A friend of mine told me that you can say "good morning" to a person at any time, if you are seeing him/her for the first time on that day. Is this true?

  • 2
    You can say good morning any time you want, but people will think you're being silly, or they'll point out it's not actually morning. That's fine with me, so I personally say good morning any time I feel like it :-)
    – user230
    Mar 1, 2013 at 17:02
  • 5
    There's room for a little leeway here. If someone wished me a "Good morning" on our first meeting of the day, and it was still before 1 o'clock, I wouldn't think much of it, and I'd probably just figure that they weren't completely aware of the time. Hearing it at 5:30 PM might get more of an odd look, though (unless maybe we were both just starting a shift at work).
    – J.R.
    Mar 1, 2013 at 18:42
  • AH., it's not common and is likely to cause others to point out it's not actually morning, as snailplane mentioned.
    – Tristan
    Jan 23, 2014 at 13:44
  • When we have Good afternoon, good evening and hi, hello kind of greetings then why say Good morning even if we see the person first time in the day. Its okay for fun to tease a friend but I dont think otherwise in social and official circumstances
    – user8894
    Jul 17, 2014 at 8:33
  • 1
    In Australia you'd only say "good morning" (a) if it actually is morning, (b) if you've not yet realised it's actually afternoon, or (c) ironically, if someone was expected in the morning but arrived after noon.
    – nnnnnn
    Dec 19, 2014 at 11:46

2 Answers 2


Perhaps that is a regional thing; where I am from in Canada, we laugh at each other good-naturedly if we say "good morning" after 12:00 noon, as if we slept in late.

If it is approaching 12:00 noon, we will look at our watches first to make sure we shouldn't say "good afternoon" instead.

Likewise, we will say "good evening" as a greeting after around 6:00 p.m., and "good night" when parting.

  • 1
    In the UK, Good Afternoon is possible between noon and 6:00 p.m., but a simple Hello is more usual. Good day is not so very common here, and in the past was dismissive, as in Then I wish you good day, sir. Mar 1, 2013 at 16:19
  • I agree; it is more common for me to say "hello" or "hi" to people more than anything else, and "good day" is a little archaic, unless spoken as slang such as "g'day". Mar 1, 2013 at 16:21
  • 2
    The US has the same "you're not a morning person, are you?" reaction to "good morning" said after 12:00 pm.
    – Martha
    Mar 1, 2013 at 16:51
  • @TrishRempel: Can I say "Good Day" at night?
    – kmdhrm
    Jan 23, 2014 at 13:05
  • It is better to write 12 p.m. in lower case. Or better 12 noon, which is less ambiguous.
    – QuentinUK
    Feb 20, 2014 at 4:22

Agree with most of the part of Trish's answer. A little yet good information.

Greet anyone Good Morning when you seem them first time for that day! This could be little beyond noon as well!

Nevertheless, avoid this when it is obvious to say Good evening.

  • 1
    What is your source for that quote? Because that assertion is precisely what the OP is asking about, and what most of us are disagreeing with. (To be explicit, no, you can't say "Good Morning" just because it's the first time you're seeing someone that day. Your quoted assertion is not true.)
    – Martha
    Jan 23, 2014 at 15:08
  • @Martha Well, there is no concrete evidence for everything especially for the language we use day-to-day. On this question only, J.R. stated in his comment and has got 4 votes up! As I said, this could be little beyond noon (Afternoon). But then one should understand and avoid it if it's not obvious morning (as 1700 hr). Maybe, this is common as we greet mainly during pre-lunch (1 pm?) office hours. Similarly, we greet with Good evening even though meeting someone at 2000 hr. Right?
    – Maulik V
    Jan 24, 2014 at 4:44
  • 3
    Maulik, that's all well and nice, but you used blockquote formatting for the statement. That implies that it's a, well, quote, as in someone else said it. If that is the case, you need to provide the source for the quote, otherwise we can't evaluate its validity. (And if it's not a quote, for heaven's sake, don't format it like one!)
    – Martha
    Jan 24, 2014 at 14:48
  • Sometimes you might hear it used late in the day (with good-natured jocularity), if, say, the two people are coworkers who happen to work a night shift together.
    – J.R.
    Jul 5, 2018 at 10:13

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