Hey Jimmy… Mash-tay!
And now you know how to say nice to meet you in Japanese. Well, not exactly “hey Jimmy mashtay” but “hajimemashite.” But it sounds like that, Jimmy.
Okay, I’ll stop calling you Jimmy.
This guide will teach you all the best ways to say nice to meet you in Japanese… formally and casually… plus how you should act.
So, read on!
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Formal “Nice to Meet You” Phrases
- Goaisatsu sasete itadakimasu.
- I’d like to extend an introduction to you.
This is a super formal way to say nice to meet you in Japanese.
Use this formal phrase when addressing a large group of people for the first time. It could work perfectly if you are giving a speech in a business setting and want to say “Nice to meet you” to the whole audience.
- Nice to meet you.
Since Japanese people will be polite when meeting someone for the first time, this simple phrase for saying “Nice to meet you” is also formal. You should follow this phrase by mentioning your name to complete the introduction.
This is the most common way to say nice to meet you in Japanese.
- Yoroshiku onegai shimasu.
- Please take care of me.
“Yoroshiku onegaishimasu” is a phrase deeply ingrained in Japanese culture, this phrase means that you wish for good relations in the future. Japanese people use it when meeting people for the first time.
Yoroshiku onegaishimasu is one of the must-know Japanese set phrases and deserves an essay to explain all it can mean… but let’s keep it simple in this context.
- O me ni kakarete kouei desu.
- I am honored to meet you.
If you have been waiting a long time to meet someone of high importance, you could use this phrase to show how honored you feel. It can give the impression that you look up to and respect them.
- Oai dekite ureshii desu
- I’m happy to meet you.
This is a formal but friendly way to express how happy you feel to have met this person. It is considered formal but can be used in lighter settings as well.
Casual “Nice to Meet You” Phrases
- Nice to meet you
Hajimemashite can also be considered a casual phrase. It is a versatile phrase used in both formal and casual settings. Feel free to use this phrase by default whenever meeting someone new.
- Yoroshiku ne
- Please take care of me
When meeting someone for the first time, Japanese people ask the other person to “take care of them” or “look out for them”. This is the shortened and more casual version of this phrase.
Now that you know how to say nice meet you in Japanese…
How do you reply to it?
Take a look.
How to Reply to “Nice to Meet You”
- Kochirakoso, hajimemashite.
- Nice to meet you too.
This is a formal but slightly casual way to reply to someone who says “Nice to meet you”. You simply reciprocate their introduction back to them.
- Kochira koso yoroshiku onegaishimasu.
- Nice to meet you too.
If you reply with this phrase, you’re also hoping that they will help you out or that you have good relations with them in the future.
- Kochira koso, douzo yoroshiku onegaishimasu.
- Nice to meet you too.
This is similar to the previous phrase but it is slightly more formal. The addition of “Douzo” makes this more formal. You could use it with those who are older or of higher social status than you.
Yoroshiku Onegaishimasu in Japanese
“Yoroshiku onegaishimasu” is a complicated word in Japanese because it is hard to get an exact English translation… without writing a whole essay. It represents a deep part of Japanese culture where you are always making sure to appreciate what those do for you.
You COULD translate it to some variation to: “Please treat me well,”
This phrase implies that you hope the other person will be cooperative and you’ll have good relations. It also means that you hope the other person won’t be bothered if you happen to burden them in the future. By saying “yoroshiku onegaishimasu”, you can show your gratitude in advance for anything someone may do for you.
You can use this when asking for favors or meeting someone for the first time. It is used in every situation from business to friends!
Body Language & How to Act
In Japan, body language can also be a big part of how you say “Nice to meet you.”
Here are some things to keep in mind when using body language for introductions.
This is a unique and traditional custom used in Japan as a greeting. You will see it happen in many different situations from casual greetings among friends to business meetings. How deep you bow can show how formal and serious an occasion is.
When being extremely polite or showing extreme remorse, you must bow very deeply. You’ll notice that people in the service industry tend to bow deeper than a bow between friends.
If you’re meeting someone new, a 15-degree bow could be sufficient. When you’re unsure about how deep to bow, the best thing to do is observe others and mimic what you see.
The Japanese people tend to prefer bowing as a greeting, but handshakes can also occur in business situations. In Japanese culture, it is customary to keep a distance from each other especially when meeting for the first time.
A bow could be more comfortable so that you don’t have to physically touch the other person. Many Japanese know that handshakes are a Western tradition so they would also reciprocate if offered a handshake.
3) Mirrored Body Language
If you’re ever unsure of what kind of body language to use, you should copy the other person. In most cases, mirroring would be appropriate whether it’s the spoken language or the body language.
However, keep in mind that in some situations the person you are introducing yourself could be of higher or lower social status than you. The social hierarchy is traditionally determined by age and your position of authority. Depending on the person, there could be a difference in how you are supposed to act. One person could act more casually but the other person is expected to show a higher level of politeness.
Don’t Read This Last Part
Well now you know how to say “nice to meet you” in Japanese.
Formally, casually, plus how to act.
If you go away remembering only one phrase, it should be “Hajimemashite.”
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