From Christmas greetings between friends to business Finland and exotic New Year wishes, I’ll introduce you to the festive Finnish vocabulary.
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Merry Christmas in Finnish
The Finnish greeting you’ll see and hear most often during the Christmas season is Hyvää joulua! (Good Christmas!)
Personally, I think this phrase is at its best spoken when you are out and about.
Hyvää joulua! is a courteous, warm wish to sprinkle around like Christmas candy. This saying is always appropriate and never too personal.
Never too personal? Yup. There are things that are too personal to say to a random person in Finland. Like, How are you? Read more about that here.
Ten Unique Finnish Christmas Greetings
When it comes to greeting family, messaging friends or writing a Facebook update for the holidays, I try to be more innovative.
In Finland, we have a charming selection of Christmas greetings you can use instead of Hyvää joulua!
Sidenote, I struggled to find exactly same meaning adjectives in English. That’s why I sometimes write few adjectives so that you can interpret the tone of the Finnish adjective more correctly.
#1 Rauhallista joulua = Peaceful Christmas!
#2 Iloista joulua = Happy, cheerful Christmas!
#3 Hauskaa joulua = Merry, fun Christmas!
#4 Valoisaa joulua = Bright Christmas!
#5 Leppoisaa joulua!= Jovial, cozy, relaxing Christmas!
#6 Tunnelmallista joulua! = Atmospheric Christmas! Refers to the coziness of Christmas.
#7 Jouluiloa! = Christmas joy!
#8 Joulurauhaa! = Christmas peace!
#9 Kiireetöntä joulua = Unrushed, relaxing Christmas!
#10 Ihanaa joulua = Lovely Christmas!
What was your favorite out of the ten greetings?
You can also substitute joulua (Christmas) with joulunaikaa (Christmas time).
For example, Leppoisaa joulunaikaa! or Ihanaa joulunaikaa!
By the way, did you notice that, in Finnish, Christmas is always written with small letters?
Watch the video if you want to hear how the Finnish pronunciation goes!
Greetings in Finnish Christmas Cards
Hands down, the most popular, traditional phrase on a Finnish Christmas card is Hyvää joulua ja onnellista uutta vuotta! (Good Christmas and happy New Year!)
In Finnish business life, we sometimes write Hyvää joulua ja kiitos kuluneesta vuodesta! (Good Christmas and thank you for the past year!).
This phrase is often used when Finnish companies say their holiday greetings to their customers and partners.
Season Greetings in Finnish
What if you want to say your holiday greetings but not talk about Christmas?
In Finnish, a great sentence would be Hyvää vuodenvaihdetta! (Good turn of the year!)
This phrase is versatile and also works well for New Year’s wishes. However, if you are writing a card, you could put separately:
Hyvää vuodenvaihdetta ja onnellista uutta vuotta! = Good turn of the year and happy New Year!
Five Happy New Year Wishes in Finnish
Holiday season includes both Christmas and New Year. Right after Christmas, we wish Happy New Year in Finland.
#1 Onnellista uutta vuotta! = Happy New Year!
#2 Menestyksekästä uutta vuotta = Successful New Year!
#3 Iloista uutta vuotta! = Happy, cheerful New Year!
#4 Hyvää uutta vuotta = Good New Year!
#5 Räiskyvää uutta vuotta! = Sparking New Year! Refers to the New Year fireworks all around Finland.
Grammar geeks like me notice that, in Finnish, New Year is written with small letters.
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Are you ready to spread some Finnish Christmas cheer? What other holiday words you would like to know? Let me know in the comments!
Looking for more information about Finnish Christmas or language? Check out some of my other posts: