12 Other Ways to Say “It’s a Pity”

Are you looking for some alternatives to “it’s a pity” to mix up your writing? It’s a decent phrase, but there are better alternatives out there.

Well, you’ve come to the right place. This article has gathered the best synonyms for “it’s a pity” that will help you.

Other Ways to Say “It’s a Pity”

  • That’s terrible news
  • What a shame
  • What a pity
  • That’s awful
  • It’s unfortunate
  • Too bad
  • That’s too bad
  • That’s such a shame
  • What a terrible thing to happen
  • Oh, dear!
  • Oh, no!
  • Alas!


  • “It’s a pity” is a formal phrase, but it’s not very common in most written contexts today.
  • “That’s terrible news” is a good choice if you want to sound more professional.
  • “What a shame” is a useful informal synonym that can mix things up.

Keep reading to learn more about the synonyms for “it’s a pity.” We’ve explained more about the best options and how to use them correctly.

You may also skip to the final section to learn whether it’s correct to say “it’s a pity.” If you’re interested in using the phrase, it’s worth knowing more about it.

That’s Terrible News (Formal)

“That’s terrible news” is an excellent formal synonym for “it’s a pity.” It shows that you are sorry to hear some bad news, especially in a business context.

You might use it when an employee has told you about a family emergency. It shows that you are a caring boss. It’s also good to follow up “that’s terrible news” with an offer to help (such as “let me know what I can do”).

It’s a great phrase to include in most professional situations. You should try to use it instead of “it’s a pity” when you want to sound respectful and polite. It’s much more effective, allowing you to use it in formal emails.

Here are a few examples to help you:

Dear Roger,

That’s terrible news. Please, keep me informed moving forward. Let me know if I can help with anything.

All the best,

Well, that’s terrible news! We’re going to have a rough start to the quarter. I don’t know if we will come back from this.

What a Shame (Informal)

“What a shame” is a great informal synonym to use instead of “it’s a pity.” You should try it when you want to sound friendly or respectful.

Generally, it works when talking to friends about minor issues. For instance, if a friend tells you that they can’t make an event you had planned, “what a shame” lets them know you will miss them.

However, you should not say “what a shame” when someone shares some really bad news. It is a bit dismissive because of the conversational nature of the phrase. So, you may offend someone if you say “what a shame” regarding a more serious situation.

“It’s a pity” and “what a shame” are both useful casually. However, there are better alternatives when you want to sound more formal. “It’s a pity” is certainly more appropriate formally, but neither of these phrases is particularly effective at sounding professional.

Here are a few examples that should help you:

Hey Timmy,

What a shame that you won’t be able to make it! Though, I appreciate you reaching out to tell me.

My best,

Oh, what a shame! I was certainly looking forward to spending the day with you. Maybe next time!

Is It Correct to Say “It’s a Pity”?

“It’s a pity” is correct to say. However, it’s not very common in modern English. “Pity” is an outdated phrase referring to feeling regret or remorse for a situation.

You can also use the following variation:

  • What a pity

“What” and “it’s” are interchangeable when they come before “a pity.” They both show that something bad has happened, and the news saddens you.

Although, “what a pity” tends to work better in spoken English. You’ll find “it’s a pity” works best in written English because it seems slightly more formal.

Feel free to bookmark this page to keep the synonyms in your mind! Then, you’ll have something to refer to when you want to replace “it’s a pity” in the future.