Questions tagged [greetings]

挨拶. Reciprocal verbal exchanges like "hello". Includes slang, colloquial, dialectal, and differing politeness levels.

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24
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3answers
4k views

Does 左様なら (sayōnara) have Chinese roots?

A related question: What does さようなら (左様なら) have to do with "left"? The English-language A.Word.A.Day list this week is doing a "Words borrowed from Japanese" theme; today's word was ...
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4answers
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What's the difference between ようこそ and いらっしゃいませ?

Both "ようこそ" (y­ōkoso) and "いらっしゃいませ" (irasshaimase) seem to mean "welcome" but what are the precise circumstances under which each should be used? "いらっしゃいませ" (irasshaimase) is uttered in unison by ...
21
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5answers
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Which is correct: こんばんわ or こんばんは?

I've seen both こんばんわ and こんばんは used; which is correct here? If we interpret the は as the topic particle, は would seem correct, but it seems that わ is used quite frequently anyway...
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2answers
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How should I start an email when requesting something from someone I don't know well?

In English, there is a certain etiquette to follow when writing a business letter. From what I've seen so far, the same seems to be true in Japanese as well. If I was making a business-related ...
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1answer
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What does さようなら (左様なら) have to do with “left”?

What is the relationship between 左様なら and 左? I assume there's some idiomatic meaning for "left" but how does it fit?
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4answers
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Appropriate ただいま-like greeting for a neighbor?

I frequently pass by an elderly neighbor who lives in the same apartment when coming home from a dog walk. He's kind of an in-house carpenter for the building and is frequently seen around the garage. ...
16
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2answers
1k views

Usage of 「ごめんください」

In all the anime and j-drama I have watched all these years, as far as I can remember, the only scenario where the greeting 「ごめんください」 is used is when the characters are in front of an ajar or open ...
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4answers
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Greeting for meeting a friend by chance

How can I greet a person in a manner similar to "Nice to find you in here!" (— meaning meeting a friend by chance somewhere)?
14
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2answers
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Which kanji to use for saying ありがとうございます in emails?

When sending emails, I've noticed that Japanese colleagues use all sorts of kanji/kana combinations for the simple phrases ありがとうございました and よろしくおねがいいたします. For example: ありがとうございました 有難うございました 有難う御座いました ...
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1answer
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At work, when is it not ok to finish an email with どうぞよろしくお願いします?

Whenever I communicate with my Japanese coworkers, I always finish my emails with どうぞよろしくお願いします。I guess in the context of an email in English it could be akin to saying "Cheers" "Regards", so I unless ...
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Is はじめまして only suitable for the first contact?

When I'm contacting a colleague for the first time and we're communicating online, I can use はじめまして as part of my greeting. Likewise, if I'm meeting someone for the first time and it is an in-person ...
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1answer
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Meaning of ちはース

Context: a boy shouts 「ちはース」 after seeing that a fan club for a boxer has only female members. He is happy to discover this since he is the kind of guy that always tries to flirt with pretty girls. I ...
12
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1answer
352 views

こんにちは and こんばんは only once a day per person?

I recently saw a video on greetings in Japan and the guy said something that I've never heard before: "you cannot use こんにちは more then once per day to the same person". He proceeded to explain that if ...
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2answers
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Ways to end a phone conversation

Despite its being one of the most basic element of daily-life Japanese, I often find myself looking for a proper way to end certain phone conversations. Of course, I know the standard: [それでは]失礼します, ...
10
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2answers
344 views

「ありがとうございや」 - Dialect? Train Station 言葉?

Today as I was transferring trains in Nagoya the station attendant was shouting repeatedly「ありがとうございや」. Doing a search on the internet revealed that this seems to be a shorted form of ありがとうございやした but I ...
10
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1answer
691 views

Greeting when meeting somebody a second time in the day?

Let's say I went to the doctor in the morning, greeting the venerable professional with a sincere "こんにちは", and that I left him after he healed my terrible headache. Now let's say that during the ...
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3answers
14k views

How to situationally respond to 「お元気ですか」?

I'm curious about how native speakers actually respond to the simple question of 「お元気ですか。」 I'm currently going into my third year of studying Japanese. My first-year Japanese professor impressed upon ...
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2answers
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Saying goodbye to a store clerk

Many times I find myself saying thanks to a store clerk, flowed by their saying thank you very much. I am used to walking away saying bye or have a nice day, but am not sure what the equivalent is. ...
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2answers
7k views

When is it appropriate to use ごくろうさま?

I've seen お疲れさま and ご[苦労]{くろう}さま used to say "Thank you" after some had done work of some type. After reading the お疲れさま thread, I realize that the two are not interchangeable. So when do you use ご[苦労]{...
8
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2answers
408 views

Is おはようです just weird

I'm watching the anime ひぐらしのなく頃に. There's a character in it who greets people with おはようです. At first I thought it was just a cute affectation, but then I wondered, if おはようございます is okay then why not ...
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1answer
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Is いらっしゃいませ only used by staff?

Is いらっしゃいませ only used by staff, or is it used in other circumstances? When I was at a dinner at a restaurant being held after a programmers' meetup, I thought that I heard it being used by one of the ...
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3answers
392 views

“fancy meeting you here”

Is there a phrase that Japanese people use to express amusement when seeing each other unexpectedly? For example, if you just said goodbye and then ran into each other somewhere else?
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1answer
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How to reply to 「いま、すごく幸せです?」

I have a colleague who is blessed with a girl child and I posted a greeting saying おめでとうございます In reply to this, he said  ありがとう。いま、すごく幸せです? I guess he is asking me about my well being. How ...
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2answers
277 views

“お休みなさい” not appropriate between male neighbours?

In a japanese マンション I noticed that after sharing the common elevator when going back home at night, most of the female residents would greet by "お休みなさい" before leaving, while it seemed that male ...
7
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1answer
514 views

Which form is はじめまして?

So I've learned that はじめまして is used in first meetings and that it stems from the verb はじめる (to start; to begin). But what form is it? It's apparently not the polite past form, which has a -た at the ...
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2answers
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Respect for the Aged Greeting

Sorry if this is off topic, but today is respect for the aged day in Japan, and I'm unsure how to greet elderly individuals, if at all. What would be the proper greeting? Would one greet individuals ...
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3answers
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Email greeting for a teacher I've never met

I've only studied Japanese for two semesters, 10 years ago, so this is a really basic question... If I'm emailing a teacher at an American university (let's call him 塚中) that I've never met before to ...
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1answer
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Regarding どういたしまして usage

Japanese textbooks teach us to reply どういたしまして。 when people say ありがとうございます。So generally it means "You're welcome~" But I read that a lot of people saying that when we say どういたしまして。 it somewhat looks "...
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1answer
228 views

ご無沙汰いたしました — OK for electronic communications?

In a recent comment exchange on ELU.SE, a Japanese man (my senior in years, and a "guest" in the forum whose questions I had answered regularly for some time, but not much lately as I have been ...
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5answers
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おはようございます when it's not morning?

In a comment to this answer it was mentioned that おはようございます can be used in a variety of situations other than in the morning. To me it only makes sense to say "good morning" when it is actually ...
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2answers
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What are valid responses to the expressions 「はじめまして」 and 「よろしくおねがいします」 used in introductions?

I came across a learn-Japanese book from the 1980s and wanted to know what you guys think. The book gave a general formula for introduction and here is how it goes: Someone says their name with any ...
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2answers
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How do I say “I understand much better than before.”?

Or "I understand much better now." If someone helped me with a translation and I responded with: どうもありがとうございます。前より上手に分かっています。 Would that be the correct way to express that in Japanese?
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2answers
268 views

Is saying 行ってきます and ただいま appropriate for guests?

We are asked to stay at a family friend's house for a couple of days. I was wondering, given that we're guests, what are the appropriate greetings to say when you're leaving and coming back to the ...
6
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1answer
399 views

What is the recommended timing for あけおめ ことよろ?

Contrarily to the abbreviated informal (if not rude) version I used in the title, the usual greeting for the New Year is quite long: 明けましておめでとうございます。今年もよろしくお願いします。 Those are two sentences, and it ...
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1answer
505 views

Hearing いらっしゃいませ when leaving the building. Why?

Whenever I leave my office building for lunch a guard in charge greets me (everyone) with a: お疲れさまです。いらっしゃいませ。 Edit: This is a recording of what I heard. Based on comments I received under this ...
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1answer
323 views

Is またね OK even if I don't literally expect to see them again?

After a casual conversation with strangers, is it ok to use またね, even though I don't literally expect to see them again? バイバイ and さよなら feel too Englishy to me, and I assume "see you" is still English, ...
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1answer
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Appropriate “wishes” for pregnancy

What is the appropriate way to express your best wishes to a woman who is having a baby? (This is for a colleague, if there are different ways depending on different contexts please explain those, ...
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Is こんばんは too formal for everyday conversation?

When giving a talk on Japanese, How to talk like a ge1sha, I made a terrible mistake: I invited someone who knew something about the language along. The only times he heckled me was when he reckoned ...
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3answers
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What is the correct way of saying “see you”?

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 ...
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2answers
999 views

A self-introduction for academic purposes

I somehow managed to get a MEXT scholarship. Now I've got to make a self-presentation, but I've been struggling with it since I'm more used to reading than writing (which is one reason I could get ...
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2answers
172 views

Arimasu as a parting phrase

Hope this is an appropriate question! I visited Tokyo back in September and got by on some very basic Japanese (though more often with the help of their good grasp on English). Anyway, there was a ...
4
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2answers
566 views

Congratulating someone on the new Era/Emperor

As Japan moves into the Reiwa (令和) era, I was wondering if any traditional greetings exist to congratulate someone on the new Era, Emperor or Year of the Japanese calendar?
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2answers
551 views

Other than はじめまして, what can we say in our introduction?

Other than はじめまして, what else can we say at the beginning of our introduction when meeting someone for the first time? Also, what else do we need to say when introducing ourselves other than our name ...
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2answers
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Which is a Better Introduction?

If I were to introduce myself, which would be better? はじめまして、あかみです。どうぞよろしく。 はじめまして、あかみです。よろしくお願いします。 How would you introduce yourself? Any better recommendations instead of 1 & 2 ?! Thanks :D
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1answer
293 views

Is 「お元気ですか」 an acceptable/common greeting?

English (and other languages) speakers often use "How are you?", "What's up?", "How's it going?" and similar phrases as greetings. Other language speakers and cultures will refrain from asking such a ...
4
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2answers
215 views

When did 「ヤッホー」 become a popular greeting?

The etymology of the very casual greeting 「ヤッホー」 appears disputed and undecided. Various theories and hypotheses have been suggested. This site lists German, Hebrew, and 山伏 as possible sources. A lot ...
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2answers
350 views

Ways to greet someone irrespective of time and situation?

Are there some Japanese greetings like the English "hello"? Most greetings seems to be tied up temporally or by another specific situation ([もしもし] for phones, [こんにちは] during day time). If I left a ...
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1answer
317 views

What is the full expression of hajimemashite / 始めまして?

I've read that はじめました or 〜まして is a shortened form of an expression originally meaning “I meet you for the first time”. If that's true, then what is the full expression?
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1answer
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Can “mata itsuka” be used in casual conversation?

Recently I came across this exchange: Person A: Ja ne. Person B: Mata aou. Person C: Ja ne. Mata itsuka. Real casual till that last line. I've been told that "itsuka" is a way to express uncertainty....
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1answer
116 views

Is it appropriate (and friendly) to say こんにちは to random people?

For example, if I pass a random person on the sidewalk in Japan, would it be appropriate to say こんにちは? I've had people do that to me. Is it considered friendly? Polite? Rude? Does it depend on ...