What triggered this question is my confusion when I was about to greet someone at around 5 to 6 pm, and I wasn’t sure if I should say “Good afternoon” or “Good evening,” but for these two, at least we can use the sun as a guide – if it’s still bright then, afternoon is still acceptable. But, where do we draw the line between evening and night? What time does night start?
What Time Does Night Start?
The sun rises and sets at different times of the day, but it’s essentially like this:
Morning is from sunrise, which is usually around 6 AM, to 11:59 AM.
Noon is at 12:00 PM.
Afternoon is from 12:01 PM to around 5:00 PM.
Evening is from 5:01 PM to 8 PM, or around sunset.
Night is from sunset to sunrise, so from 8:01 PM until 5:59 AM.
So yeah, greet “Good afternoon” at 12:01 PM to 5:00 PM, “Good evening” at 5:01 PM to 8 PM, and “Good night” at 8:01 PM until 5:59 AM. No matter the brightness of the sky, these are universally accepted greetings around these times.