Japanese Greetings

Do you know how to say hello in Japanese? How about some other useful Japanese greetings? After this free audio lesson for beginners you’ll know more than just a simple konnichiwa!

Listen to the native speakers greeting each other, and then go ahead and practice saying each Japanese phrase aloud. Once you’re feeling confident with Japanese greetings you’ll learn some different ways to say goodbye in Japanese as well.

How to pronounce Japanese greetings

おはよう ございます

お早う御座います

Ohayō gozaimasu

Good morning

こんにちは

今日は

Konnichiwa

Hello / Good day

こんばんは

Konbanwa

Good evening

おやすみ なさい

Oyasumi nasai

Good night

Greetings like “good morning” or “good afternoon” are incredibly important in Japanese. As the Japanese culture is more formal, going through the ritual of greeting another person is an important way of showing respect. Japanese tend to bow while saying “Ohayō gozaimasu”, “Konnichiwa” or “Konbanwa” depending on the time of the day. Bows can be divided into informal-15 degree angle, formal-30 degree angle, and very formal, deeper angle bows. You are expected to greet every person individually, even if they’re in a group. That means that if you’re walking along the road and pass a group of five people, you’ll have to say, “Konnichiwa,” and bow five times!

Formal greetings in Japanese

Informal Japanese Greetings

Nowadays it is quite common to use short greetings, like “” and “”, however, it is more common to say nothing between close friends. They just start talking without greetings. Listen to the link below to hear some informal Japanese greetings…

 

やあ

Hi (informal)

よう

Hey / Yo (informal greeting)

さいきん どう

最近どう

Saikin dō?

What’s up?

Regional Japanese Greetings

There are some greetings that you will only hear in certain regions.

 

まいど

毎度

Maido

Hello

おはよう さま

お早う様

Ohayō sama

Good Morning

Hello in Japanese

Saying Goodbye

You have probably heard “Sayōnara” before, which is the most common form of saying “Good-bye”. You may have also heard “Shitsurei shimasu”, another formal farewell phrase which translates literally to “I’m being rude by leaving your presence”.

さようなら

Sayōnara

Goodbye

しつれい します

失礼します

Shitsurei shimasu

Goodbye (formal)

Casual Farewells

Let’s listen to some casual farewells…

 

じゃあ / じゃあ ね

Jā / Jā ne

Bye

また ね

Mata ne

See you soon

じゃあ また

Jā mata

See you again

また あした

また明日

Mata ashita

See you tomorrow

げんき で

元気で

Genki de

Be well

That’s it for today’s lesson. Using different greetings will make you sound more fluent, so try to remember as many as you can.

If you want more lessons on Japanese salutations then I recommend that you check out the following:

Jā matta!

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Sayaka Matsuura
Rocket Japanese


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