1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Norwegian (Bokmål)
  4. >
  5. Questions about: unnskyld vs …


Questions about: unnskyld vs beklager and vær så god vs bare hyggelig

God helg,

I will preface this by saying sorry if I've missed something obvious. In what situations is unnskyld used, and when is beklager used? And in what situations are vær så god used, and bare hyggelig used. Just thought it would be helpful to know the difference.

Tusen takk!

June 27, 2015



God helg til deg også! Native speaker here. I believe "unnskyld" and "beklager" is 100% interchangeable. "Beklager" has a more formal ring to it in my ears, but the difference is slim. I would believe "unnskyld" might be a bit more commonly used, but both words are acceptable. With "beklager" you can use a few fancy expressions like "beklager så mye"(I am very sorry), and "beklageligvis"(unfortunately). An "unnskyldning" or a "beklagelse" both mean an apology.

"Vær så god" and "bare hyggelig" is not always interchangeable. When you give your mother a birthday present, you would say "vær så god". You would not use "bare hyggelig" in this case. But when she thanks you with a "tusen takk", you would probably say "bare hyggelig", but "vær så god" is also acceptable.

As a conclusion: "Bare hyggelig" is used as a response to gratitude. After recieving a "takk" or a "tusen takk" I will usually respond with "bare hyggelig". "Vær så god" is used as a response to gratitude in the same way, but also as a general expression as you give someone something. Examples of exclusive "vær så god" situations: When I am giving you the remote control I say "vær så god" When you borrow 100 bucks from me, I say "vær så god" as I hand them over.

I hope that's helpful!


"Unnskyld" is used like the English "excuse me", "sorry?", or when apologizing. Example: "unnskyld?", used to get someone's attention. "Unnskyld (meg)", (excuse me). "unnskyld..", (I am sorry..).

"Beklager" is like the English "sorry (about that)", "pardon me" and "excuse me". Often used to say "beklager at jeg er sen" (sorry i'm late), "vi beklager..." (we apologize for..).

"Vær så god" is much like the English "you are welcome", "here you go", "here you are" or "there you go". Often used when someone gives/hands something to someone.

"Bare hyggelig" would be more like the English "my pleasure" or "you're welcome", "no worries". For example at a restaurant, the waiter brings your food and says "vær så god" and you say "takk/tusen takk", and the waiter replies "bare hyggelig".

It is worth to note that many will also use the English "sorry" in addition.


I need help with this as well.


I would just go like this:

Unnskyld = Excuse me, Pardon me,

Beklager = Sorry, Sorry about that,

Vær så god = Here you are, Here you go,

Bare hyggelig = You're welcome, No worries,

Learn Norwegian (Bokmål) in just 5 minutes a day. For free.