Japanese Phrases to Know When Traveling

Japanese Phrases to Know When Traveling: Your Essential Guide

When traveling to Japan, it is always helpful to have a basic understanding of the local language. While English is widely spoken in major cities and tourist areas, knowing a few Japanese phrases can enhance your travel experience, make interactions smoother, and show respect to the local culture. In this article, we will explore some essential Japanese phrases that you should know when traveling to the Land of the Rising Sun.

Greetings and Basic Phrases:
1. Konnichiwa (KOH-nee-chee-wah) – Hello
2. Arigatou gozaimasu (ah-ree-gah-toh goh-zah-ee-mahs) – Thank you
3. Sumimasen (soo-mee-mah-sen) – Excuse me/I’m sorry
4. O-genki desu ka? (oh-gen-kee dess kah) – How are you?
5. Hai (high) – Yes
6. Iie (ee-eh) – No
7. Dozo (doh-zoh) – Please
8. Wakarimasen (wah-kah-ree-mah-sen) – I don’t understand
9. Eigo dekimasu ka? (ay-go deh-kee-mas kah) – Do you speak English?
10. Gomen nasai (go-men nah-sigh) – I’m sorry

Navigating Directions:
11. Eki wa doko desu ka? (eh-kee wah doh-koh dess kah) – Where is the train station?
12. Toire wa doko desu ka? (toy-reh wah doh-koh dess kah) – Where is the restroom?
13. Sumimasen, chizu ga arimasu ka? (soo-mee-mah-sen, chee-zoo gah ah-ree-mahs kah) – Excuse me, do you have a map?

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Now, let’s move on to some common questions and answers you may encounter during your journey in Japan:

1. Q: Nihongo ga hanasemasu ka? (nee-hohn-goh gah hah-nah-seh-mahs kah) – Can you speak Japanese?
A: Hai, sukoshi hanasemasu. (high, soo-koh-shee hah-nah-seh-mas) – Yes, I can speak a little Japanese.

2. Q: Eki made ikura desu ka? (eh-kee mah-deh ee-koo-rah dess kah) – How much to the train station?
A: 500 yen desu. (go-hyaku-en dess) – It’s 500 yen.

3. Q: Sumimasen, koko wa nan desu ka? (soo-mee-mah-sen, koh-koh wah nahn dess kah) – Excuse me, what is this?
A: Kore wa sushi desu. (koh-reh wah soo-shee dess) – This is sushi.

4. Q: Kono resutoran wa osusume desu ka? (koh-noh reh-soo-toh-rahn wah oh-soo-soo-meh dess kah) – Do you recommend this restaurant?
A: Hai, oishii desu yo. (high, oh-ee-shee dess yoh) – Yes, it’s delicious.

5. Q: Koko de wi-fi ga tsukaemasu ka? (koh-koh deh wee-fee gah tsu-kah-eh-mas kah) – Can I use Wi-Fi here?
A: Iie, wi-fi wa tsukaemasen. (ee-eh, wee-fee wah tsu-kah-eh-mah-sen) – No, you can’t use Wi-Fi here.

6. Q: Anata no namae wa nan desu ka? (ah-nah-tah noh nah-mah-eh wah nahn dess kah) – What is your name?
A: Watashi no namae wa [your name] desu. (wah-tah-shee noh nah-mah-eh wah [your name] dess) – My name is [your name].

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7. Q: Koko kara eki made ikura kakarimasu ka? (koh-koh kah-rah eh-kee mah-deh ee-koo-rah kah-kah-ree-mahs kah) – How long does it take to get from here to the train station?
A: Jyu-pun gurai kakarimasu. (jyoo-poon gah-rye kah-kah-ree-mas) – It takes about 10 minutes.

8. Q: Kono hotel wa doo iku to ii desu ka? (koh-noh hoh-tehl wah doh e-koo toh ee dess kah) – How do I get to this hotel?
A: Go-ban no basu ni notte itte kudasai. (goh-bahn noh bah-soo nee noh-teh ee-teh koo-dah-sigh) – Take bus number 5.

9. Q: Koko wa doko desu ka? (koh-koh wah doh-koh dess kah) – Where is this place?
A: Kono bashi no tonari desu. (koh-noh bah-shee noh toh-nah-ree dess) – It is next to this bridge.

10. Q: Sumimasen, denwa o tsukaimasen ka? (soo-mee-mah-sen, dehn-wah oh tsu-kah-ee-mah-sen kah) – Excuse me, can I use the phone?
A: Hai, denwa wa asoko desu. (high, dehn-wah wah ah-soh-koh dess) – Yes, the phone is over there.

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11. Q: Kono kudamono wa ikura desu ka? (koh-noh koo-dah-moh-noh wah ee-koo-rah dess kah) – How much is this fruit?
A: Kono ringo wa hyaku-en desu. (koh-noh reen-goh wah hyah-koo-en dess) – This apple is 100 yen.

12. Q: Sumimasen, ashi ga itakunai desu ka? (soo-mee-mah-sen, ah-shee gah ee-tah-koo-nai dess kah) – Excuse me, do you have any pain in your leg?
A: Iie, itakunai desu. (ee-eh, ee-tah-koo-nai dess) – No, I don’t have any pain.

13. Q: Kono kippu wa doko de kau koto ga dekimasu ka? (koh-noh kee-poo wah doh-koh deh kah-oo koh-toh gah deh-kee-mas kah) – Where can I buy this ticket?
A: Kippu wa eki no mae de kaimasu. (kee-poo wah eh-kee noh mah-eh deh kah-ee-mas) – You can buy the ticket in front of the station.

By familiarizing yourself with these essential phrases, you will be better equipped to navigate Japan with ease. Remember, even attempting a few Japanese words and phrases will be greatly appreciated by the locals, who will be more than happy to assist you on your journey. So pack your bags, learn these phrases, and embark on an unforgettable adventure in the Land of the Rising Sun!