Everyone has a birthday and for many people it's an important day of celebration! There are a lot of traditions and phrases associated with birthdays, and in this article we'll introduce you to the most important ones.

Learn phrases and questions that you can use when discussing birthdays or when celebrating with others. Take a look at the table below and get ready to party!

Essential Phrases

When is your birthday?
 
My birthday is on the 19th of October.
 
Happy Birthday!
 
Have a great one!
 
Have a good one!
 
I hope you have a wonderful birthday!
 
What are you doing on your birthday?
 
How old are you now?
 
I'm 32 years old.
 
She just turned 16 today.
 
It's his 21st birthday today.
 
I'm going to celebrate with some friends and family.
 
I'm throwing a party this weekend to celebrate my birthday.
 
Do you want to come to my birthday party?
 
What kind of cake did you get this year?
 
My mom made a huge chocolate cake for me.
 
Did you make a wish when you blew out the candles?
 
What gifts did you get this year?
 
 

Answers to the Most Common Questions

What are the most essential English phrases for talking about birthdays?
  • When is your birthday?
  • Happy Birthday!
  • How old are you now?
  • I'm 32 years old.
  • My birthday is on the 19th of October.
  • What are you doing on your birthday?
  • Do you want to come to my birthday party?
  • Did you make a wish when you blew out the candles?
What are some common birthday traditions in the English-speaking world?
In English-speaking countries there are a couple of common birthday traditions. You usually receive a birthday cake from either friends or family that you share with them. The song Happy Birthday is usually sung as the cake is brought out. The cake is decorated with candles that you have to blow out. Traditionally, the number of candles equals how old you've become on your birthday. So for example, if you turn twenty then your cake would be decorated with twenty candles. Some families follow this tradition, while others simply decorate the cake with a random number of candles. It's important to make a wish before blowing out the candles! If you can blow all the candles out in one go then your wish will come true. Besides the birthday cake, birthday candles, and singing of Happy Birthday it's also very traditional for friends and family to give you gifts on your birthday.
How do you wish somebody a happy birthday?
Three common ways to wish someone a happy birthday are:

Happy Birthday!
Happy Birthday, I hope you have a great day!
I wish you all the best for your birthday!
Are there any particularly special birthdays in the English-speaking world?
There are a few extra special birthdays celebrated in the English-speaking world. For example, in the United States the most important birthdays are when you turn 13, 16, 18, 21, and 60. These are coming-of-age milestones and can bring big changes into one's life. For example, when you turn 16 in the United States you can get your driver's license, and when you turn 21 you are legally allowed to drink alcohol.