When translating 잘자요 and 굿나잇 they both come up as meaning "Good night".

Is there a contextual difference between them, if so what is this difference and when do I have to use which one?

  • 3
    In case you haven't noticed, 굿나잇 is literally "good night" written in Hangul.
    – jick
    Dec 15, 2017 at 16:38
  • @jick omg xD no didn't notice that, I feel so stupid
    – J_rite
    Dec 16, 2017 at 10:19

3 Answers 3


With my family, we typically use "잘자요" or some variation of it when we are speaking to each other before going to sleep. However, sometimes, if we are using Kakaotalk (Korean SNS/Messenger application) we may say "굿나잇" - it tends to give off a kind of cute vibe (in my personal opinion).

Source: Native English speaker, married to Korean

  • For reference, 잘 자요 directly translates to "Sleep well". 자다 is the dictionary form of the verb "to sleep" while 잘 means "good/well".
    – Hani Honey
    Dec 28, 2017 at 18:04

I would not say "good night" to someone who is not very aquatinted with unless the person I am speaking to is an English speaker. Whereas variety of phrases of "잘자요" would be fine for anyone.

  • 잘자요 is not fine for just "anyone" it is more informal and should not be used when addressing someone who you should be more respectful towards. 굿나잇 may not be useful with someone who is not as much versed in English.
    – user17915
    Dec 21, 2017 at 6:21

잘자요/잘자!/안녕히 주무세요/안녕히 주무십시오 = Sleep well! (to sleep well during the night.)

굿나잇! = Good night! (used to say goodbye when you are leaving someone or they are leaving at night, or before going to sleep)

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