Translated by Takuya Erik Watanabe
13 Japanese Phrases You Can Use At Restaurants
In this article we introduce 13 Japanese phrases that you can use at restaurants or other food joints in Japan.
Written by Mayo Nomura
Enjoy A Meal In Japan
If you can make an order or ask for what you want smoothly at a restaurant or other food joint, you're food experience will probably be even better!
In this article, we introduce some convenient Japanese phrases that you can use at a restaurant in Japan.
*For how to read the pronunciations within the [ ], please read the following article: Japanese Basics: English In Japan And Japanese Pronunciation
Entering The Restaurant
1. Sumimasen / Excuse me
At most Japanese restaurants, a staff member will welcome you at the entrance and guide you to your table.
You can use this phrase to call for someone when there's no one at the entrance.
If the [sumimasen] pronunciation is difficult, you can also say [suimasen].
At Japanese restaurants, it's okay to call out for a waiter/waitress.
Slightly raise your hand and call out "sumimasen".
2. Futari desu / For two
You can use this phrase to let the staff know how many are in your party. You will usually say this at the entrance of the restaurant. How to say the number of people in your party is as follows:
・hitori[htori](one person), futari[ftari](two people), sannin[san nin](three people), yonin[yonin](four people)
・[hi]…Make a narrow shape with your mouth and breathe out as if rubbing your upper jaw (if you've ever studied German, it's the "ch" sound of "ich") combined with the vowel [i].
・Make sure your pronunciation for three people is [san nin], not [sanin]!