If 来る is so inherently related to the direction towards the speaker so that you cannot use 来る for actions of going towards the person you are speaking to, as was explained by examples here, then why is 迎えに来ます used to mean "I'll come to pick you up" correct?

An illogical set phrase? An exception? The only one? How did it come to existence?

1 Answer 1


I don't think you can say 迎えに来る to mean "I'll come pick you up."


Person A arrives at the airport, and calls person B: 迎えに来ますか? (Will you come pick me up?)

Person B responds: はい、迎えに行きます (Yes, I'll come pick you up)

  • Check this
    – macraf
    Oct 23, 2015 at 6:55
  • 1
    I find nothing wrong with this answer. @macraf You're referring to this example?: "三時までに迎えに来る = I shall come for you by three" Then I have to say this example is incorrect. I don't know why it's not "3時までに迎えに行く", which is what everyone says.
    – naruto
    Oct 23, 2015 at 10:28
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    @macraf Ah, I found another example, "私は絶対にあなたを迎えに来るからね". Well, this still sounds to me like 私 and あなた are at the same place, just before saying goodbye, and 私 is saying "I'll come here to meet you (again)." If 私 were in Japan and あなた were in the US, 私 would normally say 絶対に迎えに行くからね.
    – naruto
    Oct 23, 2015 at 11:09
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    わたし may say あなたを迎えに来るからね if they've just parted and わたし's mind is kind of still there with あなた. "私はあなたを迎えに来るのでそこで待っていて" sounds unnatural to me, at least as a conversation between mature adults.
    – naruto
    Oct 23, 2015 at 11:40
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    As an exception, when an adult talks to a young kid, word choice tends to be based on the standpoint of the kid. A mother may say to her child, "ママが来るまで、幼稚園で待っててね" rather than "私が行くまで".
    – naruto
    Oct 23, 2015 at 12:05

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