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Saying Thank You – Formal and Informal Ways to Say It

In some cultures, saying “please” and “thank you” is something that everyone does it on a daily basis. You don’t have to wait for a special occasion to express your gratitude. Moreover, being polite and letting people know that you appreciate what they do for you will improve your relationships.

Learning to say “thank you” and giving a response to “thank you” will help you to have a better interaction with your significant one, family, friends, teachers, professors, instructors, employers, colleagues, etc. Still, you should know that in some specific situations, you have to respect some rules, like keeping it formal or informal.

Thank you for helping me

This phrase can be used almost in any situation, to show your gratitude. If someone helped you with your groceries, with completing a project, or was there for you in your time of need, you could say “thank you for helping me”. No matter how big their help was, it was still important for you. Even though this sentence can be used in a few formal situations as well, it is rather informal.

Thank you for your assistance

We’re still talking about help, but this time, we use the word “assistance”. In formal situations, such as a discussion with your supervisor, you better stick with this expression.

I really appreciate your help

This way of thanking someone does not include the keyword “thank you”. However, it still shows your gratitude, and it is more personal. Generally speaking, “really” is used to emphasize something only in colloquial language, and is not recommended to use it in formal speaking or writing. Without this world, the sentence is also suitable for plenty of formal situations. In fact, it becomes more official than “thank you for helping me”.

Thank you for your cooperation

This is clearly not something you would say to your family on a daily basis, right? Still, at work or in other professional or business environments, this way of saying “thank you” is excellent. In most cases, you can say this right after you asked someone to help you and the person accepted, even though he or she will do something for you later, not now.

People also use “thanks for your cooperation”, but this is rather informal, and you should use this sentence in proper situations. If you must stick to a formal tone, always opt for “thank you” instead of “thanks”.

Thank you for your quick response

If you apply for a job, write an e-mail to the HR department, send a proposal for a research paper or any other formal situation that implies a response, and you get one quickly, you should use this sentence. Other ways of expressing your gratitude are saying “thank you for your prompt response” or “thank you for getting back to me”, but the last one is a less formal.

Thank you for your reply

When you asked for some information or wrote to a familiar person and got a response, “thank you/thanks for your reply” is something you should mention. This shows respect, and it may suit both formal and informal situations. In fact, even when you receive a negative answer, and you’re not at all happy with the content of the reply, you are advised to use this phrase for the sake of common sense.

Thanks for your attention

This way of saying thank you is also formal, and should be utilized especially after presenting a report or review at work, or a product or service to someone. If you schedule a meeting with one of your superiors, you should also say “thank you for your attention” or “thank you for your time.” It would be great if you start your speech or the discussion with the last phrase, and end it with the first one mentioned.

How to respond to thank you? 

The classic phrase “you’re (or you are – for more formal situations) welcome” remains the most accurate response you can give.  In fact, many people still consider that this is the best reply for “thank you”. But other used answers are “no problem” or “no worries”. These sound great especially in colloquial language, and they don’t transmit the idea that you’ve done a favor to someone, like “you’re welcome” does.

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