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Difficulty of Japanese language is based on the fact that there are several ways to talk with different kinds of people. Being respectful about hierarchy, social status and paying respect to people who deserve it by their merits.

To say “Hello” in Japanese, we can find a few synonymous and manners to initiate a conversation with anybody, but with Japanese we have at least 4 usual ways to express this same simple idea.

  • The common way: We’ve all heard in movies or maybe cartoons the word “Konnichiwa”, that is used as the most common greeting towards somebody no matter the social condition.
  • When you are at the phone in Japan most of people will answer with “moshi moshi”, that’s only used when somebody picks up the phone. Other differences between English and Japanese languages are that you can find words with a gender specific usage.
  • “Ossu” is a common way between male friends to salute each other in a pretty informal manner, maybe similar to “what’s up?” but for men use only. Another way to say “Hi” may be different between Japanese regions or cities, just as Osaka City’s particular way to salute a friend with “yahoo”.
  • Also, we can find “super informal” ways, as “saikin do?” that is the most accurate equivalent to “sup”, even over “ossu” but this is not gender specific.

 

Of course we could go deeper in this subject, as there are other ways that change depending on the hour of the day; “ohayō gozaimasu” before breakfast, "konbanwa" for evenings and after dinner, and "oyasumi nasai" to say “hello” late night or wish somebody a good night and goodbye at the same time.

 

 

To say “I love you” in Japanese we have:

  • The formal way: “Aishite imasu
  • The informal way: “Aishiteru”;
  • to tell somebody we are in love with them:
    • The formal way would be “Koishite imasu
    • The informal way is “Koishiteru

Beside this we have other similar ways to say you like somebody, “aishimasu”, “suki”, “daisuki”, but this have different meanings as well, as they can talk about things, pets or activities.

 

To express our emotions in English, we can say “I love you”, “I like you” or “I’m in love with you”, every native English speaker can understand perfectly these three simple sentences and everything they imply, but with Japanese language things may be a little more complicated and the manners differ a lot.

If we had to translate these three sentences in Japanese, the equivalent would have two different variations: the formal and the informal way. In English language the word “you” is enough to refer and speak with anybody, works perfectly in a conversation with a handyman or the president as well, but being the Japanese people very respectful and with an awareness of hierarchy, they use different words to refer people they are close to them like friends and family members or important/respected people.

 

In this article we will learn how do you say thank you in Japanese.

To say thank you in japanese we can use some different words:

  • The simplest one is arigatou ありがとう that means thank you.
  • Doumo arigatou とう that means many thanks or thanks a lot
  • Arigatou gozaimasu ありがとうございます is a way more polite
  • Doumo arigatou gozaimasu どうもありがとうございますthat means something like thank you very much.

 

Related: How do you say thank you in chinese, How do you say thank you in greek, How do you say thank you in german, How do you say thank you in spanish