Do you want to learn Japanese? If the answer is yes, then you’ve come to the right place! It’s best if you learn to say “how are you?” first; however, once you move on from that, you can start learning basic Japanese phrases.
Oh! In case you want to learn more, here is another post on Japanese greetings to help you expand your knowledge!
Best Ways To Say How Are You In Japanese
Here are some different ways to say how are you in Japanese, enjoy learning!
1. お元気ですか? (o genki desu ka)
Meaning: How are you?
This is the most commonly used phrase to ask how someone is in Japanese. When you look it up in a dictionary you will see that this is the literal translation of how are you. This is a rather polite and formal expression.
2. 元気? (genki)
元気 (genki) is the informal and casual form of お元気ですか. As you can see, this phrase doesn’t have the question suffix か (ka), but as long as you say it in a questioning tone, it will become a question.
3. 元気だった? (genki datta)
Meaning: How have you been?
One thing that you must keep in mind when using this phrase is that it is past tense, not present. Therefore, it doesn’t really mean how are you but instead, “how have you been?”. This is a more casual and informal phrase.
4. 最近はどうですか? (saikin wa dou desu ka)
Meaning: How have you been lately?
This is another good phrase to use with someone. Keep in mind that this phrase indicates recently, rather than at that exact moment.
5. 最近どう? (saikin dou)
The meaning of this phrase is the same as the phrase above but without the ですか (desu ka) part. Can you see the pattern yet? The formal form has desu ka and the informal form doesn’t have desu ka.
6. どうよ? (dou yo)
Meaning: How is it going?
This one is super casual and it has a similar meaning to “how’s it going?” in English. よ (yo) is generally added to express extra enthusiasm!
7. 気分はどうですか? (kibun wa dou desu ka)
Meaning: How is your mood?
気分 (kibun) means mood. So, this phrase literally translates to “how is your mood”. In this case, it’s asking more about emotional well-being rather than how things are in general.
8. 気分どう? (kibun dou)
Again, this is just the casual form of the phrase above since we omitted the ですか (desu ka) ending.
9. 調子はどうですか? (choushi wa dou desu ka)
Meaning: How is it going?
Choushi means condition. You should only ask this when there’s implied context, not when you’re first greeting someone. For example, if your friend is sick and you ask them that, you’re asking in reference to their sickness. Make sense?
10. どうしたんですか? (dou shitan desu ka)
Meaning: What is wrong?
Here is another alternative for how are you in Japanese. However, you should only use this phrase in negative situations when you feel like something isn’t right.
11. どうしたの？ (dou shita no)
This is a more casual version of the phrase above with the same meaning.
12. 何事だ？ (nanigoto da)
Meaning: What’s going on?
This is a really casual question. You can use this phrase when you want to find out what has been going on or you’re trying to catch up with the latest news.
13. 今なにしてるの？ (ima nani shiteruno)
Meaning: What are you up to right now?
This phrase is very common among friends. Although it doesn’t exactly mean how are you, it’s a good alternative to find out, for example, what has been going on in your friend group.
14. 久しぶり! (hisashiburi)
Meaning: Long time no see!
Actually, this phrase doesn’t exactly mean how are you in Japanese. However, it is often interpreted as “how have you been?” So, you can use this phrase when you haven’t seen somebody for a long time.
15. なにか面白いことあった? (nanika omoshiroi koto atta)
Meaning: What’s the good news?
This is a really casual phrase. It’s like asking “what’s the good news” or “anything good happen with you lately?”
17. 元気かい? (genki kai)
Meaning: What’s up?
“Hey, what’s up?” This might be the most casual phrase you can use to ask how are you in Japanese! Be sure to only use this phrase with friends!
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