What nuance exactly does bring saying 楽しみに{たのしみに}しとく instead of the more usual 楽しみにしています ? In this context, would the use of しとく(しておく) mean "I rejoice myself in advance about it" ?

Context : From a friend, referencing a diner we would have together in the evening of the same day.

3 Answers 3


The word おく in しておく works to add a nuance "for a period of time."






These five expressions all mean "I'm excited about it", "I can't wait" or something like that. These are expressing the present feeling.

The following expressions fundamentally mean the same feeling as those above, but also express the nuance "for a period of time."






These five expressions all mean "I'm excited about it, and will be excited about it for a period of time (maybe, until it happens.)" or something like that.

The more accurate nuance of this kind of おく is something like "let it be for a period of time". So, if someone says 「楽しみにしとくね。」, it means that s/he keeps the feeling 楽しみ and won't change the 楽しみ feeling for a period of time.

These expressions are sincerely used by people in many cases. But sometimes, people use one of these expressions just in order to be polite, or to put pressure on someone. I guess your friend said that sincerely.


My dictionary say "しておく" means "ある目的のためにあらかじめある行為を行なうこと(an action for a purpose in advance). For example, 今日、明日のテストのために英語の勉強をしておく( I study English today for tomorrow exam.)

I think 楽しみにしておく is a little more friendly and companionable saying than 楽しみにしている but they are almost same meaning.

  • 1
    I've seen the expression once again in the following dialog : A - いつかまた一緒に演奏したいです B - それまで自分も練習しときます I'm beginning to grasp more the idea that it's something you do now in preparation for something that will happen in future. So I understand now the first sentence more as "I already rejoice myself about it"
    – jmd
    Commented Feb 18, 2016 at 13:59

This is no easy question without knowing the exact context or situation in which to use either of the two expressions.

So, I will begin with the part of your question that I could answer with complete confidence. No, 「楽しみにしとく」 does not mean "I enjoy myself in advance about it." regardless of the context or situation.

Both 「楽しみにしている」 and 「 楽しみにしておく」 are used to talk about possible future events, period. 

Is it happening to you directly?

May the possible fun/happy event happen to you directly or to another person in your social circle? If the latter is the case, how close are you (the speaker) to that person?

「楽しみにしている」 is likely be the phrase choice for you if you are that person himself or someone very close to that person. The possible fun/happy event will influence your life more than it will others. 「しておく」 would be a highly unnatural choice in this case.

「楽しみにしておく」 might well be the phrase choice if you are not very close to that lucky-person-to-be. Of course, you might still choose to use 「している」 to show your interest more.

When might the fun/happy event occur? (How far in the future?)

Regardless of the amount of direct influence of the possible event, you might actually choose to say 「楽しみにしておきます」 if the event will not occur anytime soon in the first place.

It takes more energy to be 「楽しみにしている」 than to be 「楽しみにしておく」 because the former is something one does more actively than the latter. 「楽しみにしておくcould even mean or imply "to forget about it now and start thinking about it when the day approaches".

In conclusion, the phrase choice is influenced by multiple factors. There is no absolute rule as to which to choose when. This is why I said it was no easy question at the beginning. You do not want to sound either unusually interested or overly indifferent.

When in doubt, you will always have a safe alternative of just saying 「楽しみですね!」 with a smile.

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