WELCOME in sign language

When something is welcome, you're pleased to have it. You welcome when you greet the arrival of a person or guest with pleasure or courtesy or when one thanks you. Or, you gladly accept a new idea, you welcome it.

ASL signs for "welcome"

How to sign "welcome" in American Sign Language. And what to respond in ASL after one says "thank you".

Meaning: To greet a person, visitor, or guest in a warm and friendly manner.

Pronunciation (sign description): Dominant flat hand with palm up held in space slides toward the signer.

Learner tip: Don't confuse this similar sign with INVITE and HIRE (variation).

Used in a more formal register.

Pronunciation (sign description): Two flat hands with palms up held apart in space both slide toward the signer.

Vocabulary

In hearing American culture, when one thanks you, you say "welcome". English is a polite culture. Though, customs are culturally relative. What is polite in one culture may be not necessarily polite in other cultures.

In American Deaf culture where Deaf people are close-knit in Deaf community, other etiquette signs beyond "welcome" that Deaf signers routinely use are like THANK-YOU back when one thanks you, PSHAW (as in "no problem", "no worries" or "no big deal" with a variant of intonation), a nod of acknowledgement, "any time whenever you need", and others. Observe how Deaf people use them in contexts; for beginners, to be on the safe side, use "welcome".

Other signs of etiquette: PLEASE, SORRY.

Related signs: GREETING, HOSPITALITY

Opposite: FAREWELL.

Usage/Grammar

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ASL has its own grammar and structure in sentences that works differently from English. For plurals, verb inflections, word order, etc., learn grammar in the "ASL Learn" section. For search in the dictionary, use the present-time verbs and base words. If you look for "said", look up the word "say". Likewise, if you look for an adjective word, try the noun or vice versa. E.g. The ASL signs for French and France are the same. If you look for a plural word, use a singular word.