10 Easy Ways To Say I Love You In Japanese Today

August 23, 2021

Declaring love by saying I love you in Japanese is not common among the locals even if they have been together for quite a time. In fact, they do not take the word lightly, and most people in a serious relationship mainly demonstrate their love through actions instead of verbalizing it. In this post, we will walk you through some of the most common ways to say I love you in the Japanese language, as well as the usual romantic phrases you can use with your special someone. If you are up for that, then let's start learning!

Did you know that many Japanese people do not use universal Western lines like "please marry me?" or "will you spend the rest of your life with me?" Instead of using cheesy words, you might be surprised at some of the traditional expressions like the following:

Japanese ProposalPronunciation GuideMeaning
毎日味噌汁を作ってくださいMainichi misoshiru o tsukutte kudasaiWill you make me miso soup every day?
僕の名字に変えてもらえませんか?Boku no myōji ni kaete moraemasen ka?Will you change your surname to mine?
いつ両親に挨拶する?Itsu ryōshin ni aisatsu suru?When do you wish to greet our parents? 
結婚してみる?Kekkon shite miru?Would you like to get married to me?
僕と同じ墓に入ってくださいBoku to onaji haka ni haitte kudasaiLet's lie in the same grave

As you probably can notice from the table above, the Japanese people are not direct when it comes to expressing their feelings. This is because their culture puts a premium on emotional suppression to promote better relationships with the people around them. For this reason, it is common not to see the Japanese smile ear to ear or frown may they be at school, at work, or at home.

However, just because they are not used to expressing feelings does not mean that they are not good at expressing romantic love. In fact, they have some super sweet lines that will make it feel difficult for you to control the butterflies! Check on below to find out.


10 Ways To Say I Love You In Japanese

Whether you have a special someone in Japan or are merely trying to expand your vocabulary, learning how to express love and sincere affection in the most natural ways in Japanese culture can significantly help you out. But before we give you the translations, allow us to walk you through some of the cultural norms first.

  • In Japan, "love" is a word that is only reserved for couples or for your long-time partner. It is not common to hear the locals say "I love you" to their friends, pets, or family members.
  • Due to the influence of the Westerners on Japan, the younger Japanese people are now starting to say I love you more often, but they mainly use the casual form instead of the masu (ます)form.
  • Whether you are just on a date or already a couple, a Japanese partner will always have the acts-of-service or gifting as a love language.
  • If ever you say I love you in Japanese but did not get any response, please do not be offended since it is truly not natural to them to say it back right away.
  • The word love can be translated into two words, and these are 愛 (aior 恋 (koi). Ai refers to romantic love, while Koi describes the feeling of being in love.
  • The best time for a confession or 告白 (kokuhaku) is after the third official date with your special someone.
  • When chatting online, you might see Japanese people saying ドキドキ (dokidoki), and this translates to the sound of a fast-beating heart.

Now that we know the basics let's discuss the 10 expressions you must master to say I love you like a native. For the expressions below, please note that most of these are casual, but if you want it to sound formal/polite, you can simply add the word desu or です. For instance, we can say suki desu or daisuki desu.

JapanesePronunciation GuideEnglish Translation
好き だ よSuki da yoI love you
あなたを愛し てい ますAnata o aishiteimasuI love you
愛 し て いるAi shiteru  I love you
好き や ねんSuki yanenI like you very much
好き / 好き ですSuki / suki desuI like you
大好き だ よDai suki da yoI love you so much
大好きDaisukiI really like you
恋しいですKoishii desuI yearn for you
好きだよSukidayoI love you (for boys)
私はあなたに夢中ですWatashi wa anatanimuchūdesuI am crazy for you


Expressing Love In Japanese Through Terms Of Endearment

I Love You In Japanese

Now that we know what each of those lovely phrases literally means in English, allow us to walk you through some of the common terms of endearment used by the locals to call their special person.

JapanesePronunciation GuideEnglish Translation
Name + ちゃんName + chan (ex: Annie Chan)A nickname to sound cute
おっとO ttoHusband
 あなたAnataThis literally means "you" but can be used to mean "dear"

As we reach this part of the post, we hope that you were able to learn and that you'll have the courage to say I love you in the Japanese language like a real pro. If you enjoyed this article, we highly recommend that you review our other language tips related to Japanese, like the basic greetings, the popular local foods to try out in Japanese, and three facts you do not know about the Japanese language.

But before you jump off, allow me to ask you a question... would you like to master the Japanese language and start speaking it the way locals do? Contrary to common belief, you do not have to spend on expensive books just to learn the basics because we've got a FREE language learning tool that will help you improve in Japanese and other foreign languages in no time. So read on below to find out!


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There is no denying that Japanese is indeed one of the trickiest Asian languages to learn, but it does not mean that mastering it is impossible. While you do need to set aside time and create a good learning program for yourself, having the correct tools can help you learn the intricacies in no time. Our advice? Download the Ling App today!

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So, what are you waiting for? Download this app on Google Play and AppStore and start sounding more natural in Japanese!

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