Thank you in German is ‘Danke’, but it is not the only word to use in all kinds of situations. There are several different ways to say thank you in German. To make the right choice you need to know the context first. You can learn German online to improve your cultural understanding and make the right choice of words according to the situation.

We are talking about German etiquette. More specifically, how do you say thank you in German depending on the social context, level of familiarity, or topic of conversation? When the situation calls for it, we all know that a simple “thank you” in German (Danke!) can do wonders. It is more than polite to express gratitude in a foreign language; it is a sign of respect for the culture and country you are visiting.

One of the first things we learned as children was to say “thank you” to others. Learning German – or any other language – differs only slightly from learning to speak. You begin with the fundamentals, such as thank you and welcome, and progress to more advanced vocabulary, such as variations of the same expressions you already know.

Showing gratitude is such a great human trait that needs to be valued and cherished. When we thank people who do us a favor, it not only promotes good relationships but also plays a major role in the betterment of society as a whole. But, the real challenge here is to learn to say thank you in German based on the context you find yourself in. For that, you need to learn how to assess your social context and make the right choice of words.

To achieve this, you can book your lessons with the best German tutors at italki. These German tutors will guide you to improve German grammar and some of the fundamentals of the language such as counting in German, pronunciation of German words, sentence formation, and the right tone to hold conversations in German. Most language tutors are native speakers who will build your understanding with the help of practical exercises and examples so that you can relate different concepts to real-world scenarios.

Want to learn a language at italki?

Here are the best resources for you!

There are numerous ways to express gratitude in English. “Thank you,” “thank you a lot,” and “I’m eternally grateful to you” are just a few examples. The German language, of course, is no exception. Let us now look at some of the best ways to say thank you in German.

16 common ways to say thank you in German

1. Danke! – The universal “Thank you” in German

Danke means “thank you” or “thanks” in German and is probably the best and most common way to express gratitude. If you have ever encountered the German language, you have probably heard the phrase “Danke!” It is short, easy to remember, and appropriate for both formal and informal settings.

If you need to express gratitude in a more formal manner, you can use the phrase “Ich danke Ihnen!”

You can learn such phrases and also train your German dogs breed. For example, you can train German dog commands to your German shepherd.  

 2. Danke schön! — Thank you kindly!

Slightly formal than “danke!” is ‘Danke schön!’, which is just as short and sweet as “danke!” but perhaps a little more formal. Although it is commonly used in business, Danke schön! Appears to be appropriate for both formal and informal situations.

3. Danke sehr! – Thank you very much!

This is a more formal version of Danke schön, but the two expressions are interchangeable. Trust your instincts while making the choice of words. It is critical to consider your interpersonal communication style as well as your personality.                                  

4. Vielen Dank! — Many thanks!

Do you recall a time when you were extremely grateful to someone for their assistance? That’s the perfect opportunity to say “Vielen Dank!” in German.

5. Tausend Dank! — Thousand thanks!

Tausend Dank is the German equivalent of “Thanks a million!” and is typically used in informal situations such as when speaking with friends or family.

6. Danke vielmals! – Many thanks!

This is a variant of Thank you! It can also be translated as “many thanks!” While “Danke” means “thank you,” “vielmals” means “a lot.”

7. Vergelt’s Gott! – God will reward you!

As previously stated, there are numerous and varied ways to express gratitude in German. Vergelt’s Gott is a regional expression used primarily in southern Germany.

8.    (Danke!) Sehr aufmerksam. – (Thank you!) That is very kind of you).

We all have times in our lives when we need to thank the extraordinary people who came to our aid when we were in need. “Sehr aufmerksa” is for one of those occasions. It’s a heartfelt way of thanking someone who has done you a favor.

9.    Ich bin dir dankbar. – I am thankful to you.

It is useful to know, but it is rarely used. Depending on who you’re speaking with, use “dir” and “euch” for friends and colleagues, and “Ihnen” for those you don’t know well. The key is to use the appropriate pronoun.

10. Ich sage dir vielen Dank. – I say many thanks to you.

Although it is rarely used, it is still useful if you want a complete list of ways to say thank you in German.

11. Danke, gleichfalls! – thank you, the same to you!

When someone wishes you “Guten Appetit!” (“Good appetite” or “Enjoy your meal”) or something similar, you should add “Gleichfalls!” to your “Danke!”

12. Ich danke Ihnen! – I give you my thanks!

This is one of the most formal ways of thanking someone in German. This particular phrase is used in highly formal situations.

13. Ich danke dir! – I thank you!

Despite the fact that it does not appear to be the case, I thank you! is less formal, but more formal than simply Danke.

14. Ich möchte mich recht herzlich bedanken. – I would like to thank you sincerely.

This is the best “thank you” you can use in a formal context to thank someone who has been extremely helpful to you. Use it with confidence, just as you would in English.

15. Vielen Dank im Voraus! – Thank you in advance!

This phrase is used when you make a certain request. This is a handy phrase used to make an appeal to somebody.

16. Ich bin Ihnen sehr dankbar für… – I am very grateful to you for…

Last but not least, add what you are thankful for at the end of this standard expression. However, only use it with intangibles, such as “I appreciate your assistance,” and not with objects. Here’s an illustration: In German, “I’m grateful that you look after me” would be “Ich bin Ihnen sehr dankbar dafür, dass du dich um mich kümmerst.”

How to say you are welcome in German

Let us also see how you’d respond in German if someone said thank you. In general, Bitte, like Danke, is the safest and most common way to respond to someone expressing gratitude.

Some of the common words to say welcome in German are:

·         Bitte — you are welcome

·         Bitte schön / Bitte sehr — you are very welcome

·         Kein Problem — no problem

·         Nichts zu danken — nothing to thank for

·         Gern geschehen / Gerne — done gladly (more common than the English translation)

·         Jederzeit — anytime

Well, this is it. These were some of the most common yet effective ways to say thank you in German and how to come up with a perfect welcome phrase as a response. You will learn the contextual use of these phrases over time. It will require a lot of observation and practice. Observe the native speakers and see the phrases they use based on the context.

Do you want to speak German fluently fast? To develop your understanding of the German language you can get your hands in italki’s language learning programs. italki will help you speak German with the same ease you speak your native language.

You will have access to a unique, fast, and highly efficient learning method that allows you to learn German naturally with practical topics, authentic conversations, and one-on-one daily lessons.

Book your lessons with italki and speak German like you never dreamed you would!

Find Your Perfect Teacher

At italki, you can find your German tutor from all qualified and experienced teachers. Now experience the excellent language learning journey!

Book a trial lesson