Why do Russians say Good luck?

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Why do Russians say Good luck?


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Why do Russians say Good luck?
Why do Russians say Good luck?

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The easiest way to say good luck in Russian is Удачи! (ooDAchi). However, there are many more phrases used to wish someone good luck in different situations, some more formal and others very informal. Here are the ten most common expressions to say good luck in Russian.


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Желаю удачи!

Pronunciation: zheLAyu ooDAchi

Translation: I wish you luck

Meaning: Good luck!

This is one of the most popular ways to say good luck and has a neutral register, which makes it suitable for any type of situation, including very formal ones. You can add тебе/Вам (tyBYE/VAM)—you singular/respectful/plural—without changing the meaning or the tone of the expression, as both ways are equally acceptable in any situation or social setting.


- Желаю тебе удачи на завтра. (noo paKA, zhyLAyu tyBYE ooDAchi na ZAVtra)
- Good luck for tomorrow.


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Ни пуха ни пера!

Pronunciation: ni POOkha ni pyRAH

Translation: Neither down/fluff nor feather

Meaning: Break a leg!

A very popular expression, it is suitable for informal conversation between family and friends. The phrase originates from a traditional superstition that wishing someone good luck would produce the opposite effect and would anger the spirits. Down or fluff represents animals and feather stands for birds, so when hunters were told ни пуха ни пера, it was believed that this would trick the spirits and they would leave the hunters alone.

The appropriate answer to this expression is К чёрту (k CHYORtoo)—go to hell/to the devil—, which is designed to trick the spirits into believing the performance.


- У тебя сегодня экзамен? Ну, ни пуха, ни пера. (oo tyBYA syVODnya ehkZAmyen? Noo, ni POOha, ni pyRAH)
- Is your exam today? Break a leg.
- К чёрту. (k CHYORtoo)
- Go to hell.


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Pronunciation: shasLEEva

Translation: Happily

Meaning: Good luck/all the best

This is a popular expression suitable to all registers and used mostly when saying goodbye.


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В добрый путь

Pronunciation: v DOBriy POOT'

Translation: Have a good journey

Meaning: Safe travels, good luck

Another expression meaning safe travels as well as good luck, it has a neutral register and can be used both in informal and formal situations.


- Завтра - новый учебный год. В добрый путь! (ZAVtra - NOviy ooCHYEBniy GOT. v DOBriy POOT')
- Tomorrow is the start of the new school year. Good luck!


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Всего хорошего

Pronunciation: fsyVOH haROshyva

Translation: All the best

Meaning: All the best

Another good luck expression, you can use it as part of your goodbyes, which in Russia can be quite long and consist of several minutes of well-wishing.


of 10

С богом!

Pronunciation: s BOgam

Translation: With God

Meaning: Go with God, God be with you, good luck, safe journey, safe travels

Another popular expression, С богом! is used by many Russians to mean good luck. It is more suitable for informal settings.


- Ну давай, с Богом. Позвони, как доедешь. (noo daVAI, s BOgam. pazvaNEE, kak daYEdish)
- Okay, safe journey. Call me when you get there.


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Чтобы всё было хорошо/чтобы всё хорошо прошло

Pronunciation: SHTOby VSYO BYla haraSHOH/SHTOby VSYO haraSHOH prashLOH

Translation: So that everything is great/so that everything goes well

Meaning: I hope it all goes well, I wish you all the best

This phrase is used when discussing future plans and carries neutral tones. It is suitable for most situations and settings.


of 10

Попутного ветра и семь футов под килем

Pronunciation: paPOOTnava VYETra i SYEM' FOOtaf pat KEElem


Meaning: good luck!

Originating among sailors, this expression is often shortened to попутного ветра and can be used in any informal setting.


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В добрый час!

Pronunciation: vDOBriy CHAS

Translation: During a good hour/time

Meaning: Godspeed

Just like its equivalent in English, this way of wishing good luck sounds more old-fashioned. You are likely to come across it more often in books and films, although it is still a valid way to say good luck in real life.


- Езжайте, в добрый час. (yezZHAItye, v DOBriy CHAS)
- Go, godspeed.


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Дай бог

Pronunciation: dai BOH

Translation: God will give

Meaning: Please God

Used at any point during a conversation, it is sometimes accompanied by стучу по дереву (stooCHOO pa DYEreVOO)—knock on wood or by pretending to spit three times over the left shoulder. It is also part of a common Russian superstition about jinxing future plans.

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Nikitina, Maia. "How to Say Good Luck in Russian." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/how-to-say-good-luck-in-russian-4783141 (accessed January 6, 2023).

What is the most common Russian greeting?

Привет (privet)—“Hi” in Russian. If you ask a local: “How do you say 'Hi' in Russian?” he'll most definitely tell you this greeting. This is the most common Russian informal greeting. It's great to use in every informal situation.

What are common Russian sayings?

Start learning the most common Russian phrases.
Basic Russian phrases..
Привет! (Privet): Hi!.
Добрый вечер! (Dobryy vecher): Good evening!.
Доброй ночи! (Dobroy nochi): Good night!.
Как тебя зовут? (Kak tebya zovut): What's your name?.
Добро пожаловать! (Dobro pozhalovat): Welcome!.

How do you wish someone well in Russian?

To wish someone luck, say “Удачи” (Udachi), which simply means “Good luck.”

What does Dobra Den mean in Russian?

Добрый день (Dobry den'), or “good day,” is a stylistically neutral, polite greeting that can be used until the end of the work day.