Japanese Phrases That Can Aid an English Speaker Traveling in Japan:

Everyone seemed to like the post I did about Korean phrases an English speaker can use while traveling in Korea, so I decided to take each of the languages I use in my blog and give you phrases you can use while traveling in that country. I am beginning with Japan.

When you meet someone, try bowing instead of shaking their hand. Bowing is very, very normal in Japan, and you will get in the habit of bowing. Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

こんいちは (koneecheewa) = Hello

おはいよございます (ohio-goza-eemasoo) = Good morning

こんばんは (konbanwa) = Good evening

お元気で鵜sか?(oh, genkidesuka?) = How are you?

はい、げんきです (genki desu.) = I am fine.

“saynonara” is a more permanent “goodbye.” If you are planning on seeing them again, try “mata, ne?”Photo by Wendy Wei on Pexels.com

さよなら(sayonara) = good bye

また、ね?(mata, ne?) = See you again, right?  (If you leave the “ne” off the end and leave out the question voice inflection, it simple means, “see you again.”

どこからきましたか? (doko kara kimashitaka?) = Where did you come from?

watashi wa America jin desu. = I am an American.Photo by Sawyer Sutton on Pexels.com

私はあめりかからきました。 (watashi wa amerika kara kimashita.) = I came from American. (If you are from some other country, just replace “American” with the name of your country.)

watasjo wa ogurisu jin desu. = I am an Englishman. Photo by David Jakab on Pexels.com

はい (hi) = yes

いいえ (ee-eh) = no

わたしのなまえは_______です。(watashino namae wa_____________desu.) = My name is ______________.

あなたのなまえはなんですか? (anata no namae wa nan desuka?) = What is your name?

kore wa watashi no kaban desu. = This is my bag. Photo by Daria Shevtsova on Pexels.com

これはわたしのかばんです。(kore wa watashi no kaban desu.) = This is my bag.

ホテルはどこですか?(hoteru wa doko desuka?) = Where is the hotel?

ホテルへ行きたい(hoteru eh ikitai). = I want to go to the hotel.

There are conveninecd stores everywhere in Japan. You can find good rice meals and sandwiches there. Try a triangular shaped rice ball with tuna inside and seaweed outside. マグロ –If you see this written on it, it will have tuna inside. There are also McDonalds everywhere if you want to eat cheap. Photo by Ellie Burgin on Pexels.com

おなかがすいています(onakaga su-ite imasu.) = I am hungry.

みずをのまたい (mizu wo nomatai) = I want to drink water。

トイレはどこですか。(toh-ee-ru wa doko desuka?) = Where is the toilet?

ここです。(koko desu.) = It is here.

あそこです。 (ahsoku desu.) = It is over there.

それはそこにあります(sore wa sokoni arimasu.) = There is one there.

みぎにいってください (mighi ni itte kudasai.) = Please go to the right.

ひだりにいってください。 (hidari ni itte kudasai.) = Please go to the left.

まっすぐ行ってください (massugu itte kudasai.) = Please go straight ahead.)

You can find taxis lined up in from of the train station, but they arenot cheap. You can slo ask someone at your hotel to call a taxi for you. Photo by Jeremy Semanhyia on Pexels.com

タクシーはこどですか?(takushi wa doko desuka?) = Where is the taxi?

バスはどこですか?(basu wa doko desuka?) = Where is the bus?

えきはどこですか? (ehki wa doko desuka?) = Where is the station?

私の電子やはどこですか?(watashi no denshya wa doko desuka?) = Where is my train?

There is more than one way to get a ticket in Japan. At the airport in Osaka, there is a room with lots of people behind windows selling tickets. At the train station in the bigger cities, you can usually find that. There may be someone there who speaks English helping people buy tickets. If you are inside the subway, the tickets machines are complicated. I usually find someone to ask to help me. There will be a man in a uniform nearby, and he will happily help you. Just say, “tasukete kidasai” meaning “please help me,” and take him to the ticket machine. Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

きっぷをかいたい。 (kippu wo kaitai.) = I want to buy a ticket.

どこへきっぷをかいますか?(doko eh kippu wo ka-ee-masuka?) = Where do I buy a ticket?

いくらですか (ee-kura desuka?) = How much does it cost?

助けてください。(tasukete kudasai.) = please help me.

分かりません(wakarimasen) = I don’t understand.

わかりますか? (wakarimasuka?) = Do you understand?

わかた?(wakata?) = Did you understand?

わかた。(wakata.) = I understood.

Japanese train and subway stations can be pretty complicated, so get full instructions before leaving the place you buy a ticket because you don’t want to get lost. Some of thier stations are huge! Photo by Leon Warnking on Pexels.com

日本語が出来ますか?(nihongo ga dekimasuka?) = Do you speak Japanese?

いいえ、日本語ができません。(ee-eh, nihongo ga dekimasen.) = No, I don’t speak Japanese.

えいごをできますか?(eh-ee-go wo dekimasuka?) = Do you speak English.

はいできます。(hai, dekimasu.) = Yes, I can。

大二代部ですか?(da-eejyobu desuka?) = Are you okay?, Is it okay?

はい、だいじよぶです。(ha-ee da-eejyobu desu.) = Yes, it is okay.

いいえ、だいじょぶではありません。(ee-eh, da-eejyobu de wa arimasen.)

ちょっとまてくださうぃ(chyottomatte kudasai.) = Just a minute, wait a minute.

にほんごがすこしかでできます(nihongo ga sukoshi dake dekimasu.) = I only speak a little Japanese.

Some Japanese food is really good, and some of it is strange. You won’t know what you like unless you try. They have lots of McDonalds everywhere, but don’t eat all your meals at McDonalds. If you are in Japan, you have an opportunity not many people have to explore, so explore and learn what you like. Photo by Horizon Content on Pexels.com

たべたい (tabeta-ee) = I want to eat.

のまたい (nomata-ee) = I want to drink

ごめなさい (gomenasai) = I am sorry.

すみません(sumimasen) = excuse me.

どもありがとございます(domo arimgato gozaimasu) = thank you very much.

どいたしまして (doitashimashite) = you are welcome

いただきます (ee-tadakeemasu) = I am about to eat, and I am thankful (This is a special thing all Japanese say before they eat.)

ご地租様でした (gocheesosamadesheeta) = I finished, and it was good. (This is a special thing all Japanese say after they eat.)

おいしかた (oh-eesh-kata) = It was delicious

おいしですか? (oh-eesheedesuka?) = Is it delicious?

おいしです。(oh-eesheedesu.) = It is delicious.

レストランはどこですか?(resutoran wa doko desuka?) = Where is the restaurant?

レストランへいきましょ。(resutoran he ikimashiyo.) = Let’s go to the restaurant.

好きですか?(sukee desuka?) = Do you like it?

はい、好きです。(ha-ee, sukii desu.) = Yes, I like it.

すわてください。(suwate kudasai.) = Please sit down.

Japan has a whole culture around giving gifts. When I first went, someone suggested to me that I take lots of something I can only find in America that is small and I could put in my suitcase because you will need to give gifts. I went in 1975-1976 the first time. I took bicentennial quarters to give out. Now a days, I often give out indian arrow heads, small beauty products, etc. Be prepared. Photo by Giftpundits.com on Pexels.com

Okay, I tried to think of all the things you might need, but I know I can’t think of all of them. The Japanese are very helpful, so if you have trouble, you can ask for help. Most of them have studied English in school, but that doesn’t mean they can speak it. However, if you get in trouble, you can write it in English, and they will usually understand. If they give you a gift, it means they want to be friends. If you want to be friends, it is expected that you give them a gift back.

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