We often want to communicate a kind gesture after meeting someone, especially in more formal contexts and first introductions. One way to do so is to say, “It was a pleasure meeting you,” but is it correct?
It is correct to say, “It was a pleasure meeting you,” to end formal conversations and when you wish to conclude a conversation after meeting someone for the first time. The phrase communicates that you are thankful for having had the opportunity to meet and speak to the person.
Continue reading to learn more about how to use this expression correctly, as well as other similar ones you can use when meeting people for the first time.
What Does “It Was A Pleasure Meeting You” Mean?
“It was a pleasure meeting you” shows you are thankful for the opportunity to have met someone for the first time and conversed with them. Typically, you would say this at the end of a conversation in formal contexts.
When you say, “It was a pleasure meeting you,” you are communicating that you are glad to have met a person and are delighted to have had an opportunity to meet and speak to them.
The word “pleasure” means anything that gives enjoyment, happiness, or satisfaction (source). It has a more formal connotation or feeling than a simpler word like “nice” in “It was nice meeting you.” However, you can use the latter in less formal communication and contexts.
As we’ve said, you commonly use “It was a pleasure meeting you” in formal conversations, but it is not wrong to use it in any situation where you are exceedingly happy to have met someone for the first time.
Some appropriate examples include after meeting a friend or partner’s family for the first time, a prospective employer, or an esteemed faculty member at a school you attend or hope to attend.
There are similar ways you can express gratitude for having an opportunity to meet someone, which we’ll go through later in this article.
But essentially, this and other similar sentiments communicate gratitude and a sense of thankfulness that you could meet someone and engage in conversation with them.
How Do You Use “It Was a Pleasure Meeting You”?
You can use “It was a pleasure meeting you” in written and oral communication. However, note that the verb “was” is past tense; therefore, you should use this saying only at the end of a conversation or after meeting someone for the first time.
You’ll also note that there are slight variations, including each of the following:
- It is a pleasure meeting you.
- It was a pleasure to have met you.
- It was a pleasure to meet with you.
While these three sentences seem quite similar, their meanings have slight nuances.
You’ll notice that in the first sentence, instead of the verb “was,” we used the present tense form “is.”
So, unlike saying “It was a pleasure meeting you” at the end of a conversation, you could say “It is a pleasure meeting you” at the beginning or start of your conversation when you are first meeting someone (source).
The second sentence also has a slight difference in meaning. When you say, “It was a pleasure to have met you,” you are speaking (or writing) in the present perfect tense, which in English signifies that an event has happened in the past and continues or is directly related to the present moment (source).
So, if you are speaking with a person whom you’ve just met for the first time, and you are about to end your conversation or go separate ways, the better choice would be “It was a pleasure meeting you” rather than “It was a pleasure to have met you.”
The latter you can use if you speak to the person again and want to reference your initial meeting, telling them that you are grateful you were able to meet them.
Finally, in the third sentence, you’ll notice the addition of the word “with.” In this sentence, there’s no indication that you’ve met a person for the first time. Instead, you are emphasizing that it was a pleasure to meet with someone to discuss something important.
When Can You Use “It Was A Pleasure Meeting You”?
You can use “It was a pleasure meeting you” in speaking and writing each time you want to express gratitude for having an opportunity to meet someone. But, you should only use this to end a formal conversation or at the end of written correspondence, such as an email.
Remember that we noted “was” is a past tense verb above. That is why you would only use this phrase at the end of a conversation. However, if you are writing, it is a polite way to express your appreciation or gratitude and works well to end a note or email, especially in formal contexts.
The word “meet” is a verb, but in this context, with an -ing ending, it is a gerund. That means that while you traditionally use “meet” as a verb with an -ing ending, it functions as a noun in the sentence (source). The main verb here is “was,” a form of the verb “to be” in the past tense and a linking verb.
You can use this sentence in different environments and settings, but for the most part, you’ll reserve this expression for formal environments.
For example, when meeting a prospective employer during an interview or meeting your potential boss for the first time, “It was a pleasure meeting you” would be an appropriate way to end your conversation. You are showing that you are very thankful in a polite manner, reflecting your professionalism in this environment.
In What Context Can You Use “It Was A Pleasure Meeting You”?
There are various contexts where “It was a pleasure meeting you” works well, including formal professional or business situations and formal personal contexts.
We’ve already noted that saying, “It was a pleasure meeting you,” is a great way to end a conversation in business contexts. For example, perhaps you are meeting an employer, client, or new co-worker. If so, ending a discussion this way emphasizes the situation’s formality and professionalism.
Other contexts may be more personal in nature. For example, if you are meeting a partner’s parents or family members for the first time, using this expression at the end of a conversation will undoubtedly provide an excellent first impression.
Another example might be meeting a faculty member, teacher, or anyone you view as your superior. Even if the conversation itself isn’t all that formal, using this expression emphasizes a level of respect or regard for the person you have spoken with.
It Was a Pleasure Meeting You Last Week
“It was a pleasure meeting you last week” is similar to simply saying, “It was a pleasure meeting you.” But, by adding “last week,” you are more explicitly emphasizing the time and context of your initial meeting.
If you add “last week” to this sentence, you generally reference the first meeting, whether in writing or spoken conversation. So, this is something you might say when meeting someone a second time, referencing your gratitude and thankfulness for the initial conversation or interaction.
It Was a Pleasure Meeting You and Your Team
“It was a pleasure meeting you and your team” is an appropriate way to end a business meeting, interview, or other formal context. It is specific to after you meet multiple people or perhaps a supervisor and others who are members of a business team or environment.
Adding “your team” emphasizes that you are not only thankful for meeting one person but rather the team at large. As we’ve said, this fits particularly well in business contexts, whether you are a potential team member or meeting a client and larger team which you may be interested in hiring.
Using “It Was A Pleasure Meeting You” in a Full Sentence
“It was a pleasure meeting you” is a complete sentence since it contains both a subject and a predicate, or a noun and a verb. Here “it” functions as the noun (though it can also be a pronoun in other contexts), and “was” is the verb.
“It was a pleasure meeting you” is a complete sentence. But, you can also add more to it to make it more complex, whether you are referencing the first meeting at a later time or wish to add more detail.
Below are examples illustrating more complex sentences using “It was a pleasure meeting you.”
- It was a pleasure meeting you this morning to discuss the job opening.
- It was a pleasure meeting you today.
- It was a pleasure meeting you and your family.
- It was a pleasure meeting you to discuss your business proposition.
- It was a pleasure meeting you, and I look forward to seeing you again soon.
Note that each sentence is in the past tense with the verb “was,” so be sure you only use this expression at the end of a conversation.
You might also use this sentence to begin an email referencing a meeting that occurred in the past.
When Not to Use “It Was A Pleasure Meeting You”
The only time you should avoid using “It was a pleasure meeting you” is if the situation is very casual. You should also avoid it at the beginning of a conversation since you only want to use this to end a conversation or interaction.
If you want to use a similar saying at the beginning of a conversation, you’ll want to remember to use the present tense verb “is” rather than “was.” Also, if the situation and context are very casual, you would probably want to choose a more relaxed way to express gratitude for meeting someone, such as a simple “It was nice to meet you.”
What Can You Use Instead of “It Was A Pleasure Meeting You”?
There are other similar sayings to “It was a pleasure meeting you” if you need something less formal or wish to express your gratitude differently.
Below you’ll find other similar sayings that are less formal than “It was a pleasure meeting you.”
- It was great connecting with you.
- It was nice to meet you.
- I enjoyed meeting you.
- It was wonderful to meet you.
- I was glad to meet you.
Gerunds and Infinitives
While verbs are action words in English, gerunds and infinitives are verb forms that do not act as verbs. An infinitive is a phrase that consists of the word “to” plus a verb, but it functions as a noun, adjective, or adverb. Similarly, a gerund is the -ing form of a verb (like “meeting”) and acts as a noun.
Infinitives are challenging because they’re easy to confuse with prepositional phrases. Prepositional phrases are different from infinitives in that they begin with “to” and are followed by nouns or pronouns. An infinitive will always be “to + verb” and act as something other than the main verb in your sentence.
- I was happy to meet you yesterday.
The infinitive is “to meet” since the main verb is “was” and “meet” is a modifier.
Gerunds are quite similar, and you may have already guessed that the verb “meet” as a gerund would be “meeting.” While infinitives can act as other parts of speech (adjectives or adverbs), gerunds only act as nouns in your sentences.
An example is the focus of this article, “It was a pleasure meeting you.” Another example is the following:
- Reading is one of the things I do in my free time.
While “read” is a verb, with the “ing” ending, it acts as the subject/noun in this sentence.
This article was written for strategiesforparents.com.
If you’d like to understand more about common sayings and expressions in English, take a look at Is It Correct to Say “I Appreciate Your Help”?
“It was a pleasure meeting you” is a common expression in formal conversations and contexts. It is one you should use any time you want to express thankfulness or gratitude for the opportunity to meet and speak with someone new.
Just remember that “was” is past tense, so you’ll only want to use this at the end of a conversation after meeting someone for the first time or when referencing an initial meeting that occurred in the past.