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In English, I would start a letter like this:

Greetings <person's name>,

(...)

I'm trying to replace "greetings" with a word or an expression in Spanish that could work with both men and women, just like "greetings" does.

Is there anything a bit more formal and professional than "hola" I could use?

4

There are many approaches for this that may depend on the context. Also, note that it is usual to use forms like "querido/a", etc. to make sure either men and women feel mentioned. So there is no need to look for a form for both.

If you aim for a formal greeting, you can say:

Estimado/a

Estimado/a señor/a

Or if you know the gener

Estimado señor X

Estimada señora X

X being the surname of the person receiving the letter.

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  • There actually is a need to look for a form for both, as the letter is in fact a newsletter sent automatically, with blanks to replace with data. All I have is a name, I don't know the receiver's sex. So far the app that sends the email only supported english and french, so gender wasn't an issue as both languages have generic and formal greeting formulas. That being said, I don't dislike the idea of using a "/" character and go with "Estimado/a". I think I'll do that. Thanks! – Crono Dec 8 '15 at 20:39
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    @Crono if I know I am getting an automatically generated email, I find it very normal to have "Estimado/a" as a header and, in fact, this happens very often. So I don't think it will lose "proximity" to the eyes of the person receiving the letter. – fedorqui 'SO stop harming' Dec 8 '15 at 23:02
4

There is actually a genderless way to translate Greetings that I can think of. You can use:

Saludos, (person's name):

For example:

Saludos, María:

Saludos, José:

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  • Thanks, I didn't know I could use "Saludos" like that. I thought it was more of a "goodbye" kind of word. – Crono Dec 8 '15 at 21:39
  • No problem! You will be perfectly fine using this word on your letters. This is the one that I always used for professional emails on past jobs when I needed to contact clients. – scubaFun Dec 8 '15 at 21:49
  • I think I'll still go with fedorqui's solution. The thing is that I'm already using "Saludos cordiales" at the end so it kinda looks weird having the same word at the start. Still, +1 for advice. – Crono Dec 9 '15 at 13:43
  • No problem! His solution is also a very sound one, and you will be completely fine. – scubaFun Dec 9 '15 at 14:18
  • En español, se aconseja usar dos puntos, no coma, para los saludos que encabezan las cartas. Además, no olvides la coma del vocativo: «Saludos, María:» «Saludos, José:» – TeachingTom Dec 15 '15 at 16:42
2

«A quien pueda interesar» es formal, común y carente de género específico.

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