If you plan to travel to a Latin American country, it’s probably advisable to learn the very basics of the Spanish language. Not only will the locals greatly appreciate your efforts, but you’ll likely enjoy your experience just that bit more too!
Who knows, a few words and phrases may even get you out of a sticky situation or two to boot!
But where to start?
You’ve mastered the obligatory pleasantries and know how to greet someone and introduce yourself. The next logical step is memorizing a few short responses!
With that in mind, I’m going to run you through 8 ways to reply to the ever-popular phrase ‘mucho gusto’ or ‘nice to meet you’.
Let’s get into it!
‘Igualmente’ is by far the most common response to ‘mucho gusto’ and it’s literal translation would be ‘likewise’.
It can be used in almost any situation (breathe sigh of relief!) as its formal Spanish, so you’ve got the green light to use it when being introduced to a potential employer or someone deemed “important”.
Let’s have a look at a quick example –
Ruperto – Mucho gusto, Erika.
Erika – Igualmente.
Ruperto – Nice to meet you, Erika.
Erika – Likewise.
So, technically this isn’t a “correct” response to ‘mucho gusto’, but it IS sometimes heard in everyday colloquial conversation, at least in Mexico.
It’s basically an unofficial abbreviation of ‘igualmente’ and, as with most shortenings, it’s a little easier on the ol’ tongue
DO NOT use this one in more formal settings as it’s not strictly “correct’” Spanish; it’s mainly used by young people in VERY informal situations.
El gusto es mío
This one translates to ‘the pleasure is mine’, so it’s the perfect phrase for those on a charm offensive or when you’re genuinely really pleased to finally meet someone.
Note that we use ‘es‘ (‘ser’) and NOT ‘está‘ (‘estar‘) here as we’re talking about something more permanent (i.e., the pleasure of meeting someone)!
Here’s a quick example –
Un yerno conoce a su suegra por primera vez
Suegra – Mucho gusto, soy María.
Yerno – El gusto es mío.
A son-in-law meets his mother-in-law for the first time
Mother-in-law – Nice to meet you, I’m Maria.
Son-in-law – The pleasure is mine.
‘Encantado’ is similar to the English ‘pleased to meet you’.
It’s slightly more formal than ‘igualmente’, but it’ll sound natural in most situations.
Juan – Laura, esta es Paula.
Laura – Mucho gusto, Paula.
Paula – Encantada.*
Juan – Laura, this is Paula.
Laura – Nice to meet you, Paula.
Paula – Pleased to meet you, too.
*Erika´s note – ‘encantado’ is an adjective, so it needs to agree with the noun it’s referring to. Basically, if you’re female, you’ll need to replace the final ‘o’ with an ‘a’: ‘encantada’.
Encantado de conocerlo/la
You can whack ‘de conocerlo/la’ after ‘encantado’ for an even more formal response. It literally means ‘delighted to meet you’.
This one’s a formal phrase that can be used when meeting people of importance, etc. It probably won’t be your go-to if you’re at an informal gathering or get-together though!
Again, the final letter of the adjective varies according to whether a man or woman is speaking.
The final pronoun also changes depending on whether you’re using the informal “tú” form or the more formal “usted” form.
You’ll need to say ‘conocerte’ when using the “tú” form and ‘conocerlo/la’ when referring to someone as “usted“.
When using “usted“, you´ll also need to choose between the masculine ‘lo’ and feminine ‘la’. The indirect object pronoun ‘le’ can also be used (‘encantado de conocerle’).
Es un placer conocerte (finalmente)
This one’s the equivalent of ‘It´s a pleasure to meet you’.
As in English, it’s normally reserved for people you’ve already heard of and have been waiting to meet.
You can add ‘finalmente’ to the end if you want to emphasize the fact that you’ve been expecting to meet the person for a while.
Let’s look at an example –
Asistente – Señor presidente, el presidente de Colombia.
Presidente de México – Mucho gusto.
Presidente de Colombia – Es un placer conocerle finalmente.
Assistant – Mr. President, the President of Colombia.
President of Mexico – Nice to meet you.
President of Colombia – It’s a pleasure to finally meet you.
Es un gusto conocerte
‘Es un gusto conocerte’ is similar in meaning to ‘es un placer conocerte’, but obviously we use ‘gusto’ instead of ‘placer’.
The two phrases can be used interchangeably, but this is probably the one to plump for if you’re a bit shaky on your Spanish-learning feet and can’t recall the word ‘placer’!
Just remember to switch that pronoun up accordingly!
Mucho gusto (en conocerte)
If you can’t remember any of the phrases on this list, you can literally just respond with a ‘mucho gusto’.
Conversely, if you’re brimming with confidence, the full phrase ‘mucho gusto en conocerte’ works equally as well.
Lupe – Martín, este es José.
Martín – Hola José, mucho gusto.
José – Mucho gusto, Martín.
Lupe – Martín, this is José.
Martín – Hey José, nice to meet you.
José – Nice to meet you, Martín.
And ‘mucho gusto también’?
This is the “literal” translation of ‘nice to meet you too’, but it’s not actually “correct” Spanish and is therefore NEVER used by native speakers!
I strongly recommend that you take your pick from the above phrases instead. ‘Igualmente’ is a particularly easy one to remember and it’ll stand you in good stead in most situations.
Woah, we’ve got to the end already!
There should be something on this list for every conceivable context and situation, so you’ll now know EXACTLY what to say next time you’re faced with a ‘mucho gusto’.
Oh, and be sure to check out our list of all the different ways to respond to ‘qué tal‘ if you wanna take your Spanish conversations even further!
Now go forth and practice!