Christmas and New Year Wishes Greetings
January is coming to a close and most everyone is back to work after having taken time off for the holidays here in Sweden. That won’t stop you from hearing people greeting each other using the term god fortsättning. It literally means good continuation as in a continuation of the holidays. It’s a wonderful phrase that really comes in handy during the months of December and January every year.
Swedish has a lot of phrases that get thrown around during the holiday season. There’s god jul (Merry Christmas) and gott nytt år (Happy New Year), for example. But those are generally used for very specific days. Then there is god helg, which is somewhat equivalent to happy holidays. And there’s even gott slut, which is basically a way to wish someone a happy end of the year. Although, I have to admit that I hear gott slut so rarely that I considered not even including it in this post.
When should you use all these terms? gott slut is a way to wish someone a happy end of the year and should be used, you guessed it, at the end of the year. Usually in the days leading up to New Years. God helg is a catchall that gets used a lot in the fall and winter as people celebrate all kinds of things. But the more common ways of greeting someone during this time of year is with God jul and gott nytt år, which are, of course, used at Christmas and New Years. You can combine the two and say god jul och gott nytt år in the days and weeks leading up to Christmas and New Year, especially if you don’t think you’ll see that person until after the holidays. It’s like wishing them a happy everything, but in advance. And then there’s god fortsättning.