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I've started learning japanese not long ago, from what I've learned the correct way to say "see you" is じゃ【ja】、また【mata】.

But I've just seen a show and a character said じゃね【ja ne】.

So I searched a bit and found that the translation is actually またね【mata ne】.

So could anyone clear this up for me? What are the differences, what is the role of また【mata】 and じゃ【ja】?

  • I'm more intrigued that you think "see you" (which all of them learn in their textbooks) is itself correct. – virmaior Apr 7 '15 at 1:03
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    Can you explain the differences between see you, see you later, later, bye etc? – oldergod Apr 7 '15 at 1:26
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Actually じゃ、また is the abbreviated form of

では[Indicate changing the subject of conversation]、また(again)今度(next time)会いましょう(meet)

which, altogether, gives "See (you) again next time".

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So, the actual "correct" (i.e. expanded) phrase is :

じゃあ、またね! or じゃまたね!

Keep in mind that is only intended for casual conversations. Other greetings are in order in other contexts (See below). This phrase itself is actually already a shortening where 「じゃ」 replaces 「では」 wit the same meaning but more informal.

To separate it, think of "じゃ「あ」" as then, "また" is closer to see you and "ね", albeit more complicated, can be summarized as:

The ね is either implying a question where agreement is expected (...)

So as virmaior pointed out, "また" is probably the closest to see you. But you would usually use it in a casual way, thus shortening the sentence to either:

  • じゃ、また
  • じゃ、ね

That means see you around, see you soon...

If you want to be more precise, add an event or a timeframe after また:

  • また来週{らいしゅう}! (See you next week)
  • また会{あ}おうね! (See you next time we meet)
  • また来{き}ます! (I'll be back, lit. see you when I come back)

You can then play around with other durations, and add/remove parts of the original sentence as pointed out in the comments:

  • じゃあ、明日{あした}ね (Catch / See you tomorrow)
  • また今度{こんど} (Catch / See you next time)
  • また後{あと}で (Catch / See you afterwards)

Remember that, as almost always in japanese animation, these are familiar examples (Do not use them in a business context) !

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    I would add by "correct phrase" that this is larger dependant upon the person, situation, level of formalities as well as personal preference. It is not unusual to hear じゃあ、明日ね (Catch / See you tomorrow), また今度 (Catch / See you next time)、また後で (Catch / See you afterwards). Unless you are referring to 標準語 grammar correct, in which case it may be pertinent to mention so. – The Wandering Coder Apr 7 '15 at 2:50
  • More formally (In business situations) I would expect to use 明日もよろしくお願いします which implies I am wishing for that person to also help/work/make an appearance tomorrow and is akin to a business "See you tomorrow". – The Wandering Coder Apr 7 '15 at 2:56
  • Isn't the correct phrase actually 「それでは、またね」? それ would be omitted and じゃあ would be a shortening of では. – Eric Apr 7 '15 at 3:57
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    In the case of また会いましょう, the "correct phrase" would change. Further, to end on a またね, would exclude strict intention (as it would be implied that you mean to see someone later). Thus それでは、また会いましょう, would seem closer to a "correct phrase" in my opinion. It gives direct intention (lets MEET again) and covers the initializing それでは. – The Wandering Coder Apr 16 '15 at 0:07
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As others have pointed out, there are many ways that one can say farewell. However, you seem interested in the shortest, most common way to say it casually. This is the phrase that you want:

じゃね!

To clarify, the phrase 「じゃ、またね!」is used in the same way we might say "Ok, see you later!" in English. The また part carries the meaning of "later".

If you shorten that longer phrase to just 「じゃね!」 it can be used the same way that an English speaker might say, "Later!" or, "See ya!"

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