11

I went to Japan and want to ask the food vendors whether I can eat in front of his shop.
Basically, I want to say "Can I eat here? or Is it ok to eat here?"
I know that

ここ = Here
食べる = Eat
大丈夫 = All Right / Okay

, but I am not sure how to put them together?

Thank you so much :)

20

It can be also

ここで食べてもいいですか? or more casually ここで食べてもいい?

:)

  • Are there more words that commonly follow the ても in this construction? – chinpunkanpun Jan 18 '17 at 15:42
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    @user18296 "〜てもいいですか" is a common て-form construction for asking permission; see tanos.co.uk/jlpt/skills/grammar/sentences/?grammarid=549 for more examples :) – acidnbass Jan 19 '17 at 1:07
  • Thanks, I know that. :-) Maybe I should phrase my question more clearly: Both いい and 大丈夫 can be used after ても to ask for permission. Are there any other adjectives that can follow ても to ask for permission? – chinpunkanpun Jan 19 '17 at 7:33
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    @user18296 More politely you could use よろしい. If you want to be really casual, you can use オッケー. – Aeon Akechi Jan 19 '17 at 9:51
  • @user18296 When giving permission, you can use words like 構わない or 結構, but these are not used when asking permission. – Bruce Jan 23 '17 at 2:48
15

You are almost there. Using your words, you could connect them as such.

ここ食べても大丈夫ですか

Using も after after the -te form of a verb is useful for asking questions and has a meaning similar to "even if".

6

Using all: ここで食べても大丈夫でしょうか? ここで食事しても大丈夫ですか?

  • 食べて - te-form.
  • te-form and も - Even if ... , ...
  • I used ここ, because there is no an adverb that means "here".
  • Its translation: Is it ok to eat here? (Is it ok even if I eat here?)

In the following, I don't use them together.

  • ここで食べてもよろしいですか?
  • ここで食べてもいいでしょうか?
  • ここで食べていい? (Friendly)
4

I'll add this as another answer. So far, all the other answers are addressing how to ask "Is it OK to eat here?" However, as you know, Japanese people are often indirect, so you might in fact say/hear this from the negative point of view.

ここで食べてはだめ/いけないんですか? → Is it "bad" to eat here? (Should I not eat here?)

Taking it one step further, you might even assume it's not OK to eat here, and state that fact as a semi-suggestive question to confirm your assumption.

ここで食べてはだめ/いけないんです? → I shouldn't eat here, right? (It's "bad" to eat here, right?)


If you take the direct route by asking "is it OK?", you may come across as pushy or confrontational if they don't want you eating there. Even if it is OK to eat there, you may still leave a bit of a bad taste in their mouth by asking directly.

On the other hand, asking indirectly gives the impression that you'll politely and willingly comply with their request if they don't want you eating there.

  • You: ここで食べてはだめですね? → I shouldn't eat here, right?
  • 店長: あぁ、はい。すみませんが。。。 → Um, yes. I'm sorry... (please don't eat there).

And if it is OK to eat there, asking this way will make you seem more humble, and they will likely gladly tell you to go ahead.

  • You: ここで食べてはだめですね?
  • 店長: いえいえいえ、全然大丈夫です。どうぞ!
  • 1
    I'm not a japanese speaker but I find this fascinating - I didn't know that even asking "is this ok?", which would be perfectly acceptable, if not polite, in the english speaking world, would be considered bad in Japanese. – user14298 Jan 19 '17 at 7:59
  • @stanri: Not necessarily bad, but like I said, depending on the person and situation, it might be taken as inconsiderate or "rattling the cage" as it were... – istrasci Jan 19 '17 at 16:15
2

With respect to the context of your question, if you would like to attach importance to where you are eating - in front of the shop / or in the vicinity, you might want to modify your question to emphasize that it is the position (この場所, kono basho) you are querying about (and not necessarily the act of eating, which you implicitly assume to be acceptable).

この場所で食べても大丈夫ですか?

Otherwise, if you're worried about eating any of the other answers are acceptable.

I would say:

ここで食べていい?

as you're eating at a food stall and it's an informal setting.

Nothing stopping you from being polite if you wish to be so.

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