Speakin' Japanese: Bus banter

Speakin' Japanese: Bus banter

Stripes Japan

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 dokodesuka?” = 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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