Japanese survival vocabulary

A basic phrasebook

Japanese survival vocabulary

As Japanese is a completely different language, and because the Japanese love it so when you make the smallest effort to learn their language, you might find people smiling at you and talking endlessly!

The following table is a collection of useful phrases in Japanese. Although Japanese is very complex in terms of politeness, we have decided to always use one of the formal expressions, as it is more common in Japan.

English - Nihongo (Japanese)
Welcome - Youkoso / Irrashaimase
How are you? - Genki desu ka?
I'm fine. - Hai, genki desu.
What's your name? - Onamae wa nan desu ka?
My name is ... - … desu.
Where are you from? - Doko kara kimashita ka?
I'm from ... - … kara kimashita.
Pleased to meet you - Hajimemashite
Good morning - Ohayou gozaimasu
Good afternoon - Konnichiwa
Good evening - Konbanwa
Good night - Oyasumi nasai
Goodbye - Sayonara
Good luck - Gambatte kudasai
Cheers/Good health! - Kampai!
Bon appetit - Itadakimasu
Thank you for the meal - Gochisousama deshita
I don't understand - Wakarimasen.
Could you speak more slowly? - Yukkuri de hanashite onegai shimasu.
Please say that again - Mou ikkai onegai shimasu.
Please write it down - Kakete kurete mo ii desu ka?
Do you speak Japanese? - Nihongo shaberu?
Yes, a little. - Hai, chotto.
How do you say ... in Japanese? - Nihongo de … nan desu ka?
Excuse me - Sumimasen
How much is this? - Ikura desu ka?
Sorry - Gomen nasai
Thank you - Arigatou gozaimasu
You're welcome - Dou itashimashite
Happy Birthday - Otanjoubi omedetou gozaimasu

One - ichi
Two - ni
Three - san
Four - shi (or yon)
Five - go
Six - roku
Seven - shichi (or nana)
Eight - hachi
Nine - kyuu
Ten - juu

Further reading

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