Telephone Spanish 1.3: How to end a call

Don't just hang up! You're better than that!

¡Hasta luego!

If you’ve been following our course on Spanish for the telephone, you should already know how to initiate a phone call (competently!) and what to say when answering the phone in Spanish.

In the second class in the course we also looked at dealing with common communication problems.

Now let’s move on and look at phrases for ending a phone conversation in both a formal and informal context.

Learning how to speak on the phone in Spanish 3

In this lesson we will study different ways to finish a call, according to its degree of formality. After finishing the lesson you will be able to do the following:

  • End both formal and informal calls in a polite way.
  • Notice when the other speaker intends to finish the call and respond accordingly.

Phone call 1: Terminando una llamada informal.

Let’s have a look at this example, which is the continuation of the informal call we studied in the previous lesson.

Ana consigue volver a hablar con su amiga Eva.

Eva. ¿Me oyes ahora?

Ana.  Sí, ahora sí. Te preguntaba que si vas a venir a la fiesta.

Eva. Claro que sí. Es el viernes, ¿no?

Ana. Sí, a partir de las nueve.

Eva. Vale, pues allí nos vemos. Oye, te tengo que colgar, que estoy llegando al trabajo.

Ana. Vale, vale. Nos vemos el viernes entonces. ¡Hasta luego!

Eva. ¡Venga, hasta el viernes! ¡Chao!

Notes

1. As you probably know, vale is a way to express agreement or acquiescence, mostly used in Spain. Other usual words or phrases with the same use are okay (especially in Latin American countries), está bien or dale (in Argentina).

2. In the dialogue, Eva needs to put an end to the call because she is about to get to work: “Oye, te tengo que colgar, que estoy llegando al trabajo”. Oye/Mira, te tengo que dejar/colgar, que + reason to end the call is a common and polite way to finish an informal call. Here you are some other examples:

  • Oye, te tengo que dejar, que llaman a la puerta.
  • Oye, tengo que colgarte, que empieza la clase.
  • Mira, te tengo que colgar, que tengo otra llamada.
  • Mira, tengo que dejarte, que se me acaba la batería.

3. Notice that, as well as using the pairs oye/mira and colgar/dejar interchangeably, the position of the object pronoun te can also shift without a change in meaning: tengo que dejarte  =  te tengo que dejar.

4. In her last sentence, Ana agrees to end the call by saying “Vale, vale”, and right after she finishes her part by stating again when they are meeting (“Nos vemos el viernes”) and finally saying “¡Hasta luego!”. In informal conversations, it is usual to end a call by saying when we are meeting the next time and adding some kind of good-bye. Eva’s good-bye is very similar to Ana’s: “¡Venga, hasta el viernes! ¡Chao!”. The following examples follow the same pattern:

  • A: Bueno, pues mañana nos vemos. ¡Chao!
  • B: ¡Venga, hasta mañana! ¡Adiós!

Another option:

  • A: Pues nada, te llamo la semana que viene y te doy una respuesta.
  • B: Venga, hasta la semana que viene. ¡Chao!
  • A: ¡Hasta luego!

The last example also shows how it is common to end an informal call by adding what we are going to do the next time we meet or talk to the other person:

  • Te doy una respuesta
    I’ll give you an answer

Phone call 2: Terminando una llamada formal.

The following example is the end of the formal conversation Ana had with her bank in the previous unit.

Ahora Ana termina la llamada a su banco.

Atención al cliente. Señora Rodríguez, gracias por la espera. Me comunican que muchos clientes están teniendo el mismo problema. Lo más sencillo es desinstalar la aplicación y volver a instalarla.

Ana. Entiendo. Bueno, pues así lo haré. Gracias por su ayuda.

At. al cliente. ¿Puedo ayudarle en algo más?

Ana. No, solo llamaba por ese problema. Muchas gracias.

At. al cliente. Gracias a usted. Que pase un buen día.

Ana. Adiós, buenos días.

Notes

1. In this formal call, once the representative has given Ana a possible solution to her problem, he/she asks her whether she needs further assistance:

  • “¿Puedo ayudarle en algo más?”

2. “No, solo llamaba por ese problema. Muchas gracias.” Ana says that she needs no more help and also that the only reason why she called was the problem she has with the bank’s application. Finally she thanks the representative for his/her help.

3. The representative thanks Ana back and wishes her a nice day: “Gracias a usted. Que pase un buen día.”. Notice the use of the  presente de subjuntivo tense to express a wish.

4. Here you are some more examples of how to terminate a formal call which follow the same steps:

  • A: ¿Puedo ayudarle en algo más, Sr. Díaz
  • B: No, muchas gracias. Eso era todo.
  • A: Gracias a usted. Que tenga un buen día.

Example 2:

  • A: ¿Le puedo ayudar en alguna cosa más, sra. García?
  • B: No, eso es todo. Gracias.
  • A: A usted. Que pase una buena tarde.

5. Adiós, buenos días, buenas tardes, buenas noches are the most common ways to say good-bye in this kind of calls. You could also say hasta luego, though it sounds less formal.

Summary

The examples we have seen in this lesson illustrate how to deal with finishing both formal and informal calls, whether we are the ones who take the initiative in finishing the call or we must respond to the other’s initiative to end the call. Have a look at our section on Telephone Spanish for more classes on using the phone in Spanish. 

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