Introductions are an extremely important part of making conversation. You will need to be able to introduce yourself if you want to make new friends, form business contacts, or just get to know somebody while you're out in town. In the tables below we have gathered many phrases and examples that will help you begin an introduction, then continue the conversation, and ultimately end an introduction.

Beginning an Introduction

An introduction is the first step of getting to know somebody new. It's when you share basic information about each other. Below we have gathered a number of phrases that will help you introduce yourself.

Wie geht's?
How's it going?
Wie heißt du?
What's your name?
Ich heiße Jordan.
My name is Jordan.
Ich bin Sarah.
I'm Sarah.
Freut mich, Sie kennenzulernen.
Nice to meet you.
Schön Sie kennenzulernen.
Pleasure to meet you.
Es ist mir ein Vergnügen.
Freut mich auch, Sie kennenzulernen.
Nice to meet you too.
Erlauben Sie mir mich vorzustellen.
Let me introduce myself.
Ich möchte dir Sarah vorstellen.
I’d like to introduce Sarah.
Das ist meine Schwester, Emily.
This is my sister, Emily.
Sind wir uns schon einmal begegnet?
Have we met before?
A great way to start any conversation is using a greeting such as this or any of the following: Hey, Hi, or Hallöchen!. Sometimes Germans will shake hands when they meet for the first time – this is, however, most common in formal situations. Hugging or kissing each other on the cheek is also becoming more and more popular among young Germans, even if you don't know the person. It's best to follow the other persons lead though when you first meet them and see what they are most comfortable with. A great follow up question after a greeting is: Wie heißen Sie?.
Freut mich, Sie kennenzulernen
Once you learn the other person's name, it's polite to say this phrase or one of the following: Es freut mich, Sie kennenzulernen or Es ist mir ein Vergnügen. The second option – a2 – is a bit more formal than the other two. There are several ways somebody could respond to any of these phrases, such as: Freut mich auch, Sie kennenzulernen, Gleichfalls, or Ebenso.
Erlauben Sie mir mich vorzustellen
This is a very formal way to start a self-introduction. You would only ever really use it in very formal situations such as: job interviews, business meetings, fancy museums, or maybe when you meet your posh in-laws for the first time. After you say this phrase, you would then say: Mein Name ist.
Ich möchte dir Sarah vorstellen
When you want to introduce somebody else, use the sentence pattern: Ich möchte dir + NAME + vorstellen. You also use the less formal sentence patterns: Lass mich + NAME + vorstellen (???) or Das ist + NAME to do the same thing. In order to illustrate how to use these phrases, let's say that you're meeting up with some friends for dinner and have brought your brother along. You might walk up to your friends and say Ich würde euch gerne meinen Bruder Chris vorstellen in order to let them know who is with you. Your friends would probably then turn to your brother and say: Schön, dich kennenzulernen!.
Sind wir uns schon einmal begegnet?
If someone says this phrase to you, then that means they think they have seen you before. Maybe you two met through a friend or at work? There are lots of ways you could respond. You could say either Ich glaube nicht or Könnte sein. Or, if you also recognize the other person, you could respond with Ja, ich glaube, wir kennen uns.

Furthering a Conversation

Once the introductions are out of the way, it is time to start on some casual small talk! Below you'll find some example questions that you can use to keep the conversation going.

Was machen Sie beruflich?
What do you do?
Wo arbeiten Sie?
Where do you work?
Was führt Sie hierher?
What brings you here?
Woher kommen Sie?
Where are you from?
Wie alt sind Sie?
How old are you?
Was machen Sie in Ihrer Freizeit?
What do you do for fun?
Was für Hobbys haben Sie?
What kind of hobbies do you have?
Was führt Sie hierher?
You could hear this question for example at a party, a job interview, the doctor's, or even just in a store. There's lots of ways you could answer it. For example like this: Ich bin mit Joe befreundet und er hat mich eingeladen, mitzukommen. If you need to answer it while in a job interview, you could say something like: Ich hatte früher einen Job in diesem Bereich, und ich hoffe, dass ich meine Fähigkeiten verbessern kann.
Woher kommen Sie?
This question as well as questions like: Wie alt sind Sie? or Mit was verbringen Sie Ihre Freizeit? are perfect for showing interest in another person. You could use them while making friends or even flirting. They're easy to answer and might help you find similarities between you and the other person. For example, you might find out that you and the other person have the same interests by asking Mit was verbringen Sie Ihre Freizeit?. That will create even more conversational topics that you could use!

Ending an Introduction

Ending your first conversation on the right note is essential if you want to leave a good impression. Check out the table below for example ways on how to do this!

Es war schön, Sie kennenzulernen.
It was nice meeting you.
Lassen Sie uns in Verbindung bleiben.
Let's keep in touch.
Wir sollten einmal wiedersehen.
Let's get together again some time.
Hier ist meine Nummer...
Here is my number...
Lassen Sie uns einen Kaffee trinken gehen.
Let's go for a coffee.
Wollen Sie sich irgendwann nächste Woche wieder treffen?
Do you want to meet up again some time next week?
Machen Sie es gut!
Take care!
Ich hoffe, wir sehen uns bald.
I hope to see you soon.
Hier ist meine Karte.
Here is my card.
Es war mir eine Freude, wir sehen uns.
It has been a pleasure, we'll speak again soon.
Es war schön, Sie kennenzulernen
This sentence is usually said at the end of the first conversation between two or more people that have met for the first time. It is a polite way to say that you were happy to meet the other person. A common response to this is: Es war auch schön, Sie kennenzulernen.
Lassen Sie uns in Verbindung bleiben
Use this phrase or the phrase: Lassen Sie uns in Kontakt bleiben if you like the person or people you just met and would like to talk to them again sometime later. You might want to exchange numbers afterwards. Someone could respond to this phrase with: Auf jeden Fall, ich gebe Ihnen meine Nummer geben.
Hier ist meine Nummer
Most people in German-speaking countries own a cellphone, or a Handy as they call it in German. Exchanging phone numbers can be a great way to stay in contact with somebody new, and a good time to do this is at the end of a conversation. Here's a short example of what you could say: Es hat mich sehr gefreut, Sie kennenzulernen. Wir sollten uns nächste Woche wiedersehen. Hier ist meine Nummer: 382-65482. Schicken Sie mir einfach eine SMS, wenn Sie Zeit haben. In response, someone might say something like: Vielen Dank, ich werde Sie am Wochenende anrufen.
Hier ist meine Karte
Here is a phrase that you could use during formal situations or if you are trying to impress someone. Karte in this phrase is referring to a business card, which usually includes your contact information and is like an advertisement for yourself or your business. Exchanging cards in a business situation is a good way to make contacts for the future. In response to this phrase, somebody might say something like: Danke, lassen Sie mich Ihnen auch meine geben.
Es war mir eine Freude, wir sehen uns
This phrase is very formal and might be used at the end of business phone calls or official meetings. The informal versions of it are: Es war schön, Sie kennenzulernen, wir sehen uns or Es war mir ein Vergnügen. Someone might answer these phrases with: Ich freue mich darauf, wieder mit Ihnen zu sprechen.

Answers to the Most Common Questions

What is the easiest way to introduce myself?
Introductions are a great way to begin any conversation while meeting new people, making new friends, flirting, or getting to know new business contacts. The informal way to introduce yourself in German is by simply giving your name by using the phrase . In formal situations you'd give your last name or your full name plus maybe your business, department at work, or your job title. After giving your name it would be polite to say: . Pretty easy right? With just these simple phrase you'll be able to meet people all over the German-speaking world!
What should I say after introductions?
After short introductions it's easy to jump into small talk with questions like: , , , and . These questions are super basic, but they show people that you are interested in getting to know them more, and they can all lead to deeper conversations. Being talkative to and curious about somebody you just met can leave a good impression on them and lead to a new friendship. Be sure to try some of these questions out!


Save as PDF Listen to Dialogue