What is the difference in nuance between using でも or は in the next sentences?:



I got several and different replies about this topic, so I don't know what to think about this.

One of these replies said that in the first one, only this weekend is available to me. "(The weekend that is available tome is only this weekend, but) Is it okay for you?". In the second one, I don't say so. You're just asking if this weekend is convenient for him or her.

Is that true? How would you explain the difference? I find myself kind of confused right now.

4 Answers 4


At the risk of winding up, within a few minutes, as one of those who tried to help, I shall give it a shot. At the very least, I am a Japanese-speaker.

To me, the two sentences mean very different things from each other and they are not interchangeable. That is unless you have a particular situation in mind that is beyond my imagination.  


This question is asked when the speaker wants/needs to do something with/for the listener and wants to know if this weekend is convenient for the listener.

「いい」 here means "convenient" or "good" for doing something.


In this sentence, the meaning of 「いい」 will be quite different than in the first sentence. It means "good (without doing something)".

Suppose you bring home-grown vegetables to your friend's home on weekends on a fairly regular basis. This coming weekend, however, your friend is going on a 4-day trip and will not be able to consume the vegetables if you brough them. When you find out about your friend's trip on the phone, you might say 「じゃあ、今週末はいい?」 meaning that it would be good for both you and your friend if you did not bring vegetables this weekend.

This usage of 「いい」 (and of 「は」) is extremely common among us native speakers, but not at all among J-learners as far as I am aware. We speak like:

Mom: 「明日{あした}はお弁当{べんとう}いる?」"Do you need a bento tomorrow?"

Son: 「明日はいい。明後日{あさって}お願{ねが}い。」"No, thanks! I'm fine (without a bento) tomorrow. Please make one the day after tomorrow."

  • I think that in your explanation, the translation of いい in slang could become "all good". 明日はいい。明後日あさってお願ねがい。 → Tomorrow's all good. The next day please! Nov 29, 2016 at 13:47
  • 1
    I'm a native speaker of English who says "all good", but it doesn't make any sense to me here as a translation of いい.
    – user1478
    Nov 29, 2016 at 14:06
  • Might be helpful to also supply 今週の週末がいい . I remember vividly having それはいい (refusal of suggestion) / それがいい (acceptance of the suggestion) explained to me the first time I visited Japan. or alternately if that doesn't work at all, the supplement would be helpful for me to understand why.
    – virmaior
    Nov 29, 2016 at 14:24


In English, Even if i'll go this weekend, is it ok?
The literal translation: Even this weekend is ok?


In English, If i'll go this weekend, is it ok?
The literal translation: this weekend is ok?

Those sentences seems someone to talk to companion is promising i'll go to somewhere. So i translated that.


First, although 今週の週末 is not wrong, you might wanna consider using 今週末 instead.

As for your question, I feel like there are many possibilities. It would be very helpful to have some context or know what the previous sentences were.

Would usually mean

This weekend is ok?

Could mean

Would this weekend also be ok?


As seen in the other answers, the translations can vary quite a bit depending on the context. I perceive them like this:


How about this weekend?

(The asker is open to other dates.)


Is this weekend OK?

(The asker is specifically asking about this weekend.)

でも basically translates to "or something". "this weekend or something"

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