Quiz: How do you say "Goodbye! / See you!" in Japanese?

edited March 2013 in Japanese
Show off your knowledge here! Which Japanese expressions correspond to "Goodbye!", "See you!", or even "Later!"? There are many!!


  • Sayonara or Ja matta!
  • Sorede wa mata? / Sore ja mata? 

    Maybe more 'see you later' or 'see you then'?
  • edited March 2013
    That was very quick! Good job! Thank you Jplanlver san and Alan san!

    Okay, so far we have:

    • さようなら。Sayoonara. "Goodbye."  (formal - neutral)
    • それでは、また。Soredewa mata. "See you." (neutral - informal)
    • それじゃ、また。Soreja mata. "See you." (informal)
    • じゃあ、また。 Jaa mata. "See you." (informal)

    Note that Soredewa mata, Soreja mata, Jaa mata are variations of the same expression. Soredewa mata is the full form, whereas the ja in soreja is the contracted form of dewa in soredewa. Going even further, jaa in Jaa mata is a short version of soreja

    There are more expressions that mean "Goodbye" or "See you". Please share it when you think of one!
  • しばらく、して、から、わに。Shibaraku shite kara wani.
  • edited April 2013
    Thank you, Phillippe san!

    しばらくしてから shibarakushite kara means "after a while". It can be used in sentences such as, しばらくしてから兄が帰ってきました。Shibarakushite kara ani ga kaette kimashita. "My brother came home after a while", and しばらくしてから雨がやみました。Shibarakushite kara ame ga yamimashita. "After a while, it stopped raining". This is a very useful expression to remember! Great that you brought it up. Unfortunately however, you cannot use it as a greeting...

    The equivalent of "Later" in Japanese is 後で Ato de. You can use it as a greeting, but you can also use in sentences such as 後で電話してください Ato de denwashite kudasai. "Please call me later", and 宿題は後でします Shukudai wa ato de shimasu. "I'll do my homework later".

    People often add something extra to the expression 後で Ato de when they use it for a greeting. Here are some variation examples!
    • じゃ、後で。Ja, ato de.
    • それじゃ、後で。Soreja, ato de.
    • また後で。 Mata ato de.
    • じゃ、また後で。 Ja, mata ato de.
    • それじゃ、また後で。Soreja, mata ato de.
    • 後でね。 Ato de ne.
    • じゃ、後でね。 Ja, ato de ne.
    • それじゃ、後でね。Soreja, ato de ne.
    • また後でね。 Mata ato de ne.
    • それじゃ、また後でね。 Soreja, mata ato de ne.
    The above greetings are all pretty casual.

    There are more expressions you can use to mean "Goodbye" in Japanese! Let me know if anybody has a guess!!
  • I'm so bummed that "after a while crocodile" doesn't translate over and work. hahaha :)
  • Yeah, 後でね、ワニ Atode ne wani (attempted meaning: See you later alligator) doesn't work either. Sorry! :( 
  • edited April 2013
    Believe it or not, people often even omit the very word that means "Later" or "Goodbye"! What's left then?!

    じゃあね。Jaa ne.

    The above expressions all mean something like, "Okay, then!". You can use each of them as a parting phrase.


    The versatile expression どうも Doomo is also often used as a casual parting phrase. (Check out this thread if you like to learn more about どうも Doomo.)


    If you like to be very polite, here's a good expression to remember:
    失礼いたします Shitsureeitashimasu.
    (You can also use 失礼します Shitsureeshimasu)

    This expression is commonly used as a polite parting phrase at the end of a phone conversation. So if you call a restaurant to make a reservation, for example, you should say 失礼いたします Shitsureeitashimasu when you hang up the phone.

    You can of course say 失礼いたします Shitsureeitashimasu to someone in person, but only when you want to be very polite. You're not expected to say this when you leave a store or a restaurant as a customer. You should rather say, どうも Doomo (casual "Thanks") or ご馳走様でした Gochisoosamadeshita ("Thank you for the meal").

    There is one more thing you should know about 失礼いたします Shitsureeitashimasu. That is, you can also use this phrase when you enter someone's house. It's a very polite expression, and your host will be impressed and happy to hear it!

    So... if you are invited to someone's house, you can say 失礼いたします Shitsureeitashimasu both when you enter the house and when you leave the house. It's kind of like the Italian "Ciao!" isn't it? (Remember though, that "Ciao" is a casual expression, while 失礼いたします Shitsureeitashimasu is a very polite expression.)
  • また今度ね= see you next time :D
  • That's a good one! 
  • Hi :) my friend told me 'matta ne'  works too.
  • Yes, it does! 

    Mata ne!  (Note that there is only one "t".)
  • I am watching anime and I allways hear them saying (ja na) when they want to say goodbye or later or ok then is that true??
  • That's a very casual expression, but indeed it's a completely legit Japanese expression! It actually sounds a bit rough, and the usage is pretty much restricted to male speakers. In fact, as a woman, I have never used that expression in my life!
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