Speaking Japanese: Bus Banter

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Speaking Japanese: Bus Banter

by: . | .
Stripes Japan | .
published: July 27, 2016

 Pronunciation key: “A” is short (like “ah”); “E” is short (like “get”); “I” is short (like “it”); “O” is long (like “old”); “U” is long (like “tube”); and “AI” is a long “I” (like “hike”). Most words are pronounced with equal emphasis on each syllable, but “OU” is a long “O” with emphasis on that syllable.

 

Bus banter
 
The convenience of Japan’s “densha” (trains) and “chikatetsu” (subways) are legendary. However, riding a city bus is not quite as easy for non-Japanese speakers since there are not many signs in English. Here’re some useful phrases you can use as you catch the bus. 
 
“Basu tei wa doko desuka?” = Where is the bus stop?
“… wa doko desuka?” = Where is …?
“basu tei” = bus stop
 
“Kono basu wa Shinjyuku ni ikimasuka?” = Is this bus going to Shinjyuku?
“… ni ikimasuka?” = Is it going to …?
“Hai, ikimasu” = Yes, it is going.
“Iie, ikimasen” = No, it is not going.
 
“Shinjyuku made Ikura desuka?” = How much is it to Shinjyuku?
 
“PASMO wa tsukae masuka?” = Can I use PASMO? 
“ … wa tsukae masuka?” = Can I use … ?
(PSMO and SUICA are rechargeable IC cards used to ride trains, subways and some buses.)
 
“Untenshu-san” = Mr. driver
(“San” is used show respect for the driver.)
 
“Jikokuhyou” = timetable
“Jyoushaken” = ticket
“Tsugi tomarimasu” = We will stop at the next (bus) stop.
“tsugi” = next
“tomarimasu” = stop
(You will hear the recorded announcement, “tsugi tomarimasu” when you press the button to let driver know you want to get off at next stop. )
 
“Orimasu.” = I am getting off
 
“Sumimasen, Shinjyku wa mada desuka?” = Excuse me, is this (are we in) Shinjyku yet?” 
“sumimasen” = excuse me
“…  wa mada desuka?” = Is … yet?
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