I've been wondering, why whould folks avoid the usage of Hey to greet someone/team as the mail starts, did that really read grotesque? What could be the alternatives other than the conventionals?

  • I don't think many people use hey as greetings. Some do use it, but the word is also used to attract attention from somebody or to start swearing to strangers depending on your tone. Your e-mail can't deliver your tone.
    – user140086
    Mar 1, 2016 at 6:32
  • "Hey" is better for informal emails. Try "Hello" for formal ones.
    – NVZ
    Mar 1, 2016 at 6:32
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    Look at it this way - you wouldn't walk up to someone in the street and start a conversation with 'Hey', it is grossly impolite. So, why put it in an email.
    – Chenmunka
    Mar 1, 2016 at 9:03
  • "Hi" is informal but not as informal as "Hey".
    – Obay Ouano
    Mar 1, 2016 at 9:39

1 Answer 1

Dear Mr/Ms <surname>

is still the correct formal way to start an email. Stick with that. Note that you should use Ms with women even if you happen to know what their marital status is.

Save "Hey" for good friends.

This is a good guide for email etiquette, particularly when mailing companies.


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    I agree with this, except the part about "Ms". Some people strongly object to Ms. Starting an email by annoying someone is not good! In general in the UK, I'd advise starting with Dear {First name}, whether they're male or female.
    – AndyT
    Mar 1, 2016 at 10:30
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    Ah, perhaps yes. Yeah, Dear <first name> is probably safer in the UK. Mar 1, 2016 at 10:36
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    I still used Mr/Ms as a sign of respect and it usually taken as such. The only problem with the title is getting it right. I get plenty of mail from India and I'm never quite sure. Additional. I have witnessed "shock" at the use of the word "dear". The graceless think it's too familiar.
    – user116032
    Mar 1, 2016 at 17:21

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