G’mar chatima tova is the traditional Hebrew greeting said before (and on) Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the Jewish year and the culmination of the High Holiday season.

It translates as, “a good final sealing,” in the Book of Life, in which we are inscribed on Rosh Hashanah and sealed on Yom Kippur. It is written in Hebrew as גמר חתימה טובה. 1

The catch-all greeting you can use for the entire season is “shanah tovah” (שנה טובה), which means “good year.” The word “umetuka” (ומתוקה), “and sweet,” is sometimes appended to the end.

It is also common to wish each other an easy fast. This is especially useful if you prefer to play it safe and stick to English.

(Note that it is not standard to wish someone a “happy Yom Kippur,” but it is perfectly acceptable to wish them a meaningful one.)

For more information, see What Is the Traditional Yom Kippur Greeting?