Japanese Words for Today vol.4!!!


Hello everyone!

How is your summer vacation going??


Today is…‘ Japanese Words for Today week 4’!!


Last week, we introduced differences between polite and casual Japanese.

Japanese Words for today Vol. 3 !!
In Japanese, there are so many ways to change the words into the polite form !! Today we will explain the most basic two style of polite Japanese !!

Did you find any ‘Desu’ or ‘Masu’ in movies or conversations??

It is complicated, but try to use it! So you can be a higher level of Japanese speaker!



Today, we will introduce words for greeting!

In English, there are many many ways to greet; Hello, good morning, what’s up…

There are also many ways in Japanese.


The basic ones are

  • おはよう / おはようございます (Ohayo / Ohayo-gozaimasu)
    • ‘Good morning’ in English
    • ‘Ohayou’ is casual and ‘Ohayo-gozaimasu’ is polite


  • こんにちは  (Konnichiwa)
    • ‘Good afternoon’ in English
    • Many people misunderstand it to ‘hello’, but Konnichiwa is only used in the afternoon (around 11am-5pm).
    • We use Konnichiwa in school or to friends parents, but not at work or to friends.


  • こんばんわ  (Konbanwa)
    • ‘Good evening’ in English
    • We use it to older people, but not really to friends.


You might know or have heard those words already.

They are known well in all over the world!

Those 3 words are BASICS, but Ohayo is only one commonly used.



We often use Otsukare / Otsukaresamadesu.

  • おつかれ / おつかれさまです (Otsukare (Casual) / Otsukaresamadesu (Polite))

There is no English word or expression exactly the same as Otsukare.

Otsukare is used in various situations.


①At work

When you enter the office in the morning, come back from somewhere, or leave after work,  you can use ‘Otsukaresamadesu’ to greet to your co-workers or boss.


②On the phone

You can use ‘Otsukaresamadesu’  on the phone to greet. But we usually use it only to co-workers or clients.


③After done something

“Otsukare” also mean ‘well done’ and ‘good job’. So we use it after we complete our tasks or after sports practice.


You can use Otsukare anytime regardless of time!

“Otsukare” includes many meanings such as tiredness, well done, how are you doing, and gratitude. So it is very useful in many situations. I personally use Otsukaresamadesu the most commonly.

 Otsukare” is used a lot at work, society, and sports teams, but not really among friends.



With friends,

we use ‘Yo’, ‘Yahho-‘, ‘ussu’ or ‘Ohayo’.

  • They mean ‘Hi’ or ‘what’s up!’.

When we meet with our friends or pass by, we just say those words and start talking.

There are thousands of ways to say hi to your friends. Sometimes we just make up original words among friends.

But they can be used only to friends. You can get into trouble by greeting with those words to your boss or clients. So please be aware of it!!



We introduced words for greeting today!

They are very easy to use, so please try to use them to Japanese people and make some friends!!

We would be happy to hear Japanese words from non-Japanese people!


See you next week!







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MINORI wrote this blog/

3rd-year student at Saint Mary's University

Majoring Accounting.

Public Relations of Japanese Canadian Society with Miki.

Japanese Words for Today is written by Minori! 

She came to Canada, Nova Scotia when she was a high school student.

She is a cheerleader in our society!

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