111 Nicknames for Grandpa

Choosing the perfect grandfather name
Verywell / Alex Dos Diaz

If you've just learned that you're going to become a grandfather, you have cause to rejoice. Modern grandfathers are often just as involved in their grandchildren's lives as the grandmothers of the past. They also may choose to be known by non-traditional grandfather names, although many find the time-honored tags perfectly serviceable.

Best Nicknames for Grandpa

  • Abuelo
  • Big Daddy
  • Grandpa
  • Grampa
  • Grandpappy
  • Gramps
  • Granddad
  • Opa
  • Papa
  • Pop-Pop

How to Choose a Grandfather Name

Deciding on a name for you baby to call their grandfather can sometimes be more complicated than you think. Sometimes, the Grandpa in question has their own name picked out, but you and your partner just aren't crazy about it. That being said, the grandparent may have their own strong feelings about what they are going to be called, and it is their name after all.

A good rule of thumb is to find a name that everyone is okay with. Parents should try to be flexible here. It's fine to veto anything that's truly off-putting, but remain open to what your child's grandpa wants. If you're the grandpa, come up with a name that is not too close to what your child will be calling their dad, and make sure you're going to be okay being called it in public.

Consider also your partner's grandparent name, and the names that any other grandparents will be using. You might not want to choose the same name as another grandparent. If you both want the same name, but you don't want to duplicate it, you can put your own names after the grandpa-name.

Traditional Grandfather Names

Those opting for the traditional still have their pick of an almost endless number of variations on the traditional Grandpa, some evidently caused by childish mispronunciation, some perhaps derived from grandfather names in other languages. Some families, especially those with multiple grandparents, choose to add the given name or the last name to the grandparent name, arriving at combinations such as Grandpa Will or Poppa Fisher.

  • Big Daddy
  • Big Paw
  • Grandfather
  • Grandpa
  • Grampa
  • Grandpappy
  • Gramps
  • Granddad
  • Granddaddy
  • Grandpop
  • Papa
  • PawPaw
  • Peepaw
  • Papadaddy
  • Pop
  • Poppa
  • Pops
  • Pop-Pop
  • Poppy
  • Bompa
  • Bumpy
  • Boppa

Modern Grandfather Nicknames

The tendency among some grandmothers to opt for younger-sounding names has its counterpart among grandfathers but is a considerably smaller contingent. Grandfathers who opt for different names often choose something that relates to a job or an interest.

The list of modern grandfather names is short but can be expected to grow as members of the baby boomer generation increasingly become grandparents. With more blended families and same sex couples, the need for more creative grandpa names will grow.

  • Ace
  • Boss
  • Bubba
  • Buck
  • Buddy
  • Buzzy
  • Captain
  • Champ
  • Chief
  • Coach
  • Duke
  • G or Gee
  • G-Dad or G-Daddy
  • G-Dawg or G-Dog
  • G-Pa
  • Grady
  • Granda or Grandy
  • Grand-dude
  • Granite
  • King
  • Papi
  • Papadaddy
  • Papster
  • Pepe, Pepo, or Peppy
  • Poppo or PoPo
  • PopZ
  • Rocky
  • Skipper

Grandfather in Other Languages

Some grandfathers choose names favored by different nationalities or cultures, and it's not necessary that it be one's own culture. For example, Opa (the German nickname for grandfather) is a popular choice among grandfathers of all stripes.

A listing of grandfather names taken from other languages is complicated by the fact that such names usually occur in several different spellings when translated into English, especially when they are taken from a language that uses a different alphabet. I've included many of these alternate forms and spellings, but there may be others. In addition, many languages have both a formal and informal term for grandfather.

The following list, therefore, is not complete and authoritative but is offered as a starting point.

  • Chinese: YéYé or YehYeh (paternal); Gōng Gong or Wàigōng (maternal)
  • Filipino: Lolo (most common), Ingkong, Lelong, Abwelo 
  • Flemish: Bompa, Bompi, Opa, Opi
  • French: Grand-père, Grand-papa, Pépère, Papy, Papi
  • French Canadian: Pépé, Pépère, Papi
  • German: Opa
  • Greek: Pappoús, Pappoo, Papu, Papou
  • Hawaiian: Tutu kane, Kuku kane
  • Hebrew: Saba, Sabba
  • Italian: Nonno, Nonnuccio, Nonnino, Nonnetto
  • Irish: Seanathair, Daideó
  • Japanese: Ojiisan, Sofu, Jiji
  • Korean: Haraboji, Harabeoji, Halaboji, Halabeoji
  • Polish: Dziadek, Dziadziu
  • Portuguese: Avô, Avozinho, Vovô, Vo
  • Russian: Dedushka, Deda, Dedulya
  • Spanish: Abuelo, Abuelito, Lito
  • Yiddish: Zayde, Zaydee, Zaydeh

Modifications by Grandchildren

Sometimes kids come up with their own names for their grandparents. This can sometimes be inspired by their first attempts at saying the name.

One disadvantage that grandfathers have is that their names are easily modified into something less than flattering. Gramps, for example, has been known to morph into Grumps, whereas Poppy and Poopy are a little too close for comfort. When spoken by an adoring grandchild, however, even such names have their charms.

Some grandfathers may not spend much time pondering their grandfather name. So, later, they may wish that they had opted for a different choice. There's nothing wrong with changing a grandfather's name in mid-stream, so to speak. But grandfathers who decide to do so should be prepared if family members have trouble making the change.

By Susan Adcox
Susan Adcox is a writer covering grandparenting and author of Stories From My Grandparent: An Heirloom Journal for Your Grandchild.