Speakin' Japanese: Taxi talk

Speakin' Japanese: Taxi talk

by Takahiro Takiguchi
Stripes Japan

Sooner or later you’re going to have a take a taxi in Japan. And, yes, they are as clean as people say. And they are safe. So flag one over and hop in.

• “Kyanpu Kinzaa made onegai shimasu.” = Could you take me to Camp Kinser, please?

“kyanpu Kinzaa” = Camp Kinser
“onegai shimasu” = Could you … please?
“made” = to
“Moyori no eki made onegai shimasu.” = Could you take me to the nearest station, please?
(“moyori” = nearest, “eki” = station)
“Roppongi 7-23-17 made onegai shimasu.” = Could you take me to the address of Roppongi 7-23-17.

• “ku-ji no densha ni maniai masu ka?” = Can I make the 9 o’clock train?
(“ku-ji” = 9 o’clock, “ichi-ji” = 1 o’clock, “ni-ji” = 2 o’clock, “san-ji” (3..), “yo-ji” (4..), “go-ji” (5..), “roku-ji” (6..), “shichi-ji” (7..), “hachi-ji” (8..), “juu-ji” (10..), “juuichi-ji” (11..), “juuni-ji” (12..), “gozen” = a.m., “gogo” = p.m.)

“Donokurai kakari masu ka?” = How long does it take?
(“donokurai” = how long/much/many) 
“Ikura desu ka?” = How much is it?
(“ikura” = how much (money))
“Nimotsu ga aru node toranku wo akete moraemasu ka?” = I have a baggage, could you open the trunk, please?
(“nimotsu” = baggage, “node” = because of, “toranku” = trunk)

• “Massugu desu.” = Go straight ahead, please.
(“Massugu” = straight)

“Hidari/migi ni magatte kudasai.” = Turn to the left/right, please.
(“hirdari” = left, “migi” = right, “magatte” = turn)
“Koko de tomete kudasai.” = Stop here, please.
(“koko” = here, “tomete” = stop)

When on Okinawa, You can also say it in “Uchinaaguchi” (island dialect) like this:
“Chaa mattoobaa susumi soorii.” = Go straight ahead, please.
“Hijai / Nijiri he magatei kuimisooree.” = Turn to the left / right, please.
(“hijai” = left, “nijiri” = right)
“Toumatei kuimisooree.” = Stop here, please.

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