How to What to Text Instead of Whats Up

Are you looking for an original, clever way to ask someone, "what's up?" Whether you're chatting with a friend, crush, family member, or partner, switching up your language is an easy way to keep your text exchanges engaging and memorable. Keep reading for a comprehensive list of things to say in place of "what's up," and learn how to level up your texting skills!

This article is based on an interview with our dating and relationship coach, Suzanna Mathews, founder of The Date Maven.


[Edit]"What's shakin', bacon?"

  1. Use a funny or cheeky version of the usual "what's up?" Shake it up if you just want to check in with your texting partner (but you're tired of the same old conversation starter). There are plenty of phrases along the lines of "what's up" that are still more entertaining. Have fun with it, and try a goofy question like:
    What to Text Instead of Whats Up Step 1.jpg
    • "Hey! What's cooking?"
    • "Hey, Einstein! Still cracking the old theory?"
    • "How's life been sailing lately? ⛡️"
    • "What's the word, hummingbird?! 😊"

[Edit]"Thought this might make you laugh!"

  1. Send them a funny meme or video to grab their attention.[1] You can instantly brighten anyone's day (and get an exchange going) by texting them something funny. Find a meme, video, or funny social media post you think your texting partner would like. If you don't know their sense of humor well yet, send them something that made you laugh.
    What to Text Instead of Whats Up Step 2.jpg
    • "I can't stop laughing at this puppy video! πŸ˜‚πŸΆ What do you think?"
    • "You like Lord of the Rings, right? These Tumblr memes are killing me!"

[Edit]"Look at my view today!"

  1. Snap an intriguing picture and send it to them.[2] Give your texting partner little snapshots into your daily life. Whether you take a photo of the view outside your window or your pet being particularly cute, you can wordlessly show the other person what you're up to and prompt them to talk about their day.
    What to Text Instead of Whats Up Step 3.jpg
    • "Check out this insane coffee art! β˜•οΈ Where's your fave place to get coffee??"
    • "Found the coolest little park on my run! Have you ever been here?"
    • "OMG, my cat is being too cute this morning. I hope your morning has been just as delightful! 😊"

[Edit]"Check out this awesome song!"

  1. Share little things that show the other person who you are.[3] Songs and music are a great way to help someone get to know you, but you could also mention a tv show, book, or another fun activity. Ask them what they think of each cool song or movie you text them about, and for a recommendation in return. Over time, you'll learn more about one another's tastes.
    What to Text Instead of Whats Up Step 4.jpg
    • "I heard this on the radio, and I thought you might like it. Thoughts?"
    • "WHOA. The new BTS music video is πŸ”₯, check it out!!"
    • "Just finished watching The Batman, and I feel like it's your kind of movie. Have you checked it out yet?"

[Edit]"Tell me about your day using only emojis. 🀯"

  1. Emojis can perk up a boring text message and make it visually interesting. They can also add extra emotion and depth to your message; "What's up? 😊" feels much more inviting than "What's up?" with the only difference being one simple emoji.[4] Add emojis to your opening text, or take it a step further and send a text with only emojisβ€”giving the other person a fun message to decipher.
    What to Text Instead of Whats Up Step 5.jpg
    • "You'll NEVER guess what happened today! 🍿🀏😯"
    • "Good morning, β˜€οΈ! What do you have planned today? πŸ˜‰πŸ§‘"
    • "❓⬆️" and "β“πŸ‘†" can both mean "what's up?" in emoji-speak.

[Edit]"Check out this GIF! πŸ˜‚"

  1. Use a GIF to say hello and entertain your texting buddy. Like emojis, GIFs add color and whimsy to an otherwise plain text message. Rather than texting "what's up," text the other person a GIF to get their attention. Select a GIF you think they'd laugh at or a GIF relating to one of your mutual interests (a TV show or movie, for example.)
    What to Text Instead of Whats Up Step 6.jpg
    • Alternatively, there are tons of GIFs with "what's up" text pasted over a goofy video clip. Pick one of those and send it to someone so they know you want to chat!
    • If you want to be a little flirty and funny, send the classic Friends GIF of Joey saying, "How you doin'?"

[Edit]"What's your opinion on cats versus dogs?"

  1. Engage your texting partner by asking for their opinion. Getting their opinion is a great way to show someone that you're interested in what they have to say and value their thoughts. If you're still building a friendship, it helps you get to know them better. Start off a text exchange with a quick question about their preferences, which can get them talking even easier than "what's up?" [5]
    What to Text Instead of Whats Up Step 7.jpg
    • "I can't decide what to have for dinner! Should I make pasta or tacos?"
    • "Important question! Pineapple on pizza: yes or no?"
    • "Idk what to wear for this work event! Can I get your opinion?"

[Edit]"What was the highlight of your day?"

  1. Ask subtle questions that let you learn as much information as possible. For example, when you ask about the highlights of their day, you're also quietly asking the other person about the things they're most passionate about.[6] Rather than a simple "what's up," ask them more specific questions about their daily life to prompt a more detailed response.
    What to Text Instead of Whats Up Step 8.jpg
    • "Working on anything exciting at the moment?"
    • "Hey there! Any juice news you wanna talk about? πŸ˜‰"
    • "How did work go today? Did you get that presentation done?"

[Edit]"Where would you go if you could travel anywhere?"

  1. Pose a creative, open-ended question to keep the conversation flowing. Open-ended questions are any query that requires a longer answer than "yes" or "no." Once you get the other person talking, it's easy to have a lengthy and entertaining exchange.[7]
    What to Text Instead of Whats Up Step 9.jpg
    • "If you could have dinner with anyone, dead or alive, who would it be and why?"
    • "What are you interested in that most people aren't?"
    • "If you could have a superpower, which one would you choose and why?"

[Edit]"Our favorite YouTuber just dropped a new video!"

  1. Bring up a shared interest between the two of you. When you discuss a common interest, it's easier for the other person to text you backβ€”and because they're passionate about it, they'll probably text you back as soon as possible. You're also showing them that you remember the things you've learned about them, which would make anyone feel good about themselves.
    What to Text Instead of Whats Up Step 10.jpg
    • "Hey! Are you watching the Packers game this weekend?"
    • "Did you see the news? There's gonna be another season of Criminal Minds! We've got to watch it together πŸ˜†"
    • "We should hit up an amusement park soon! You're the only person I know as passionate about roller coasters as I am. 😍"

[Edit]"I have a random question! Ready?"

  1. Text them to share all your spontaneous thoughts. You could send an obscure fact you learned or ask them an unconventional yet entertaining question to make them smile. So long as you begin your text with "random idea" or "random fun fact," your texting partner won't be taken aback by the sudden shift in subject.[8]
    What to Text Instead of Whats Up Step 11.jpg
    • "Random question! Aliens: are they real or not?? πŸ‘½"
    • "Fun fact! I was today years old when I found out that a group of porcupines is called a prickle. πŸ₯Ί"
    • "Did you know that the entire world's population could fit inside Los Angeles? πŸ˜΅β€ Wild!"

[Edit]"Riddle me this! πŸ˜‰"

  1. Send a puzzle or riddle to get your texting partner's mind racing. If the person you're texting is a fan of brain-teasers, capture their interest with a thought-provoking text. It's more engaging than a simple "what's up," and it's also a fun distraction for your texting partner to think over as they go about their day.
    What to Text Instead of Whats Up Step 12.jpg
    • "What word is spelled incorrectly in every single dictionary?" (The answer is "incorrectly.”)
    • "What kind of coat is always wet when you put it on?" (The answer is "a coat of paint.”)
    • "Today's Wordle has me STUMPED. Any suggestions?"

[Edit]"Want to grab lunch this week?"

  1. If your goal is to hang out in person, ask them to do something with you. This should be easy enough for friends and familyβ€”just make a lighthearted suggestion. If you're texting a crush, keep your request simple and see if they're interested in engaging with you.[9] Politely and sincerely propose a date idea you think might be fun!
    What to Text Instead of Whats Up Step 13.jpg
    • "I can't believe we haven't hung out in 2 weeks! Let's hit up the arcade tomorrow. 😊"
    • "I miss you! Wanna grab a coffee this week and catch up?"
    • "I've been really looking forward to meeting in person. Can I take you to a movie on Friday?"

[Edit]"What's your favorite pick-up line?"

  1. If you're texting a crush, ask them flirty questions. Share a few cheesy pick-up lines of your own, too! At the very least, you can make your crush smile and kick off the texting exchange on a much more interesting note. And if you play your cards right, you might even score a date out of the deal.
    What to Text Instead of Whats Up Step 14.jpg
    • "I've never minded a little cheese myself. On an unrelated note, do you ever feel tired after running through my thoughts all day?"
    • "Do you like cheesy pick-up lines? Because if you were words on a page, you'd be fine print!"

[Edit]"Hey, how are you today?"

  1. Keep it simple and show them you're available for an in-depth chat.[10] Try using a thoughtful and sincere alternative to "what's up" that shows your texting partner you're genuinely curious about how they're doing at the moment. Ask them about their day, how they're feeling, or even ask them if they have time for a longer chat on the phone.
    What to Text Instead of Whats Up Step 15.jpg
    • "Got time to talk? Let's catch up!"
    • "How are you holding up?"
    • "What have you been doing since we last talked?"
    • "How's every little thing in your life? 😊"


  1. ↑ [v161914_b01]. 18 August 2021.
  2. ↑ [v161147_b01]. 25 May 2021.
  3. ↑ [v161914_b01]. 18 August 2021.
  4. ↑
  5. ↑
  6. ↑ [v161232_b01]. 5 November 2019.
  7. ↑
  8. ↑ [v161914_b01]. 18 August 2021.
  9. ↑ [v161147_b01]. 25 May 2021.
  10. ↑ [v160997_b02]. 15 April 2019.