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Use of domo/arigato 2013/2/12 04:26
I have been quite confused in what situation to use either domo or arigato. It often feels too light to use domo but using just arigato seems a bit too much if you see my point.
by Gifu Joe (guest)  

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/2/12 08:07
Making comparison with English equivalent (it's just my sense, others might have different opinions), "domo" is quite light, like "Ta" (in British English) or just a "um" of acknowledgement :)

"Arigato" is "Thanks," and I don't think it would be too much? :)
by AK rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/2/12 09:56
doumo
arigatou
doumo arigatou
arigatou gozaimasu
doumo arigatou gozaimasu

Of course, "doumo" is very light, just only an abbreviation of thanks, so it's greeting rather than thanks.
But I don't think arigatou is too much?

If you feel so, how about "sankusu"(thanks) or something?
It's familiar/friendly, if you feel arigatou is a bit formal.
Or clownish speaking like "angato" or "arigato-san"?

BTW, when can't you decide between doumo and arigatou?
by ajapaneseboy rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/2/12 16:07
ajapaneseboy,

I would consider "angato" or "arigato-san" to be used playfully, only among friends and/or family members. It "can" sound a bit mocking/not serious expression of gratitude.
by AK rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/2/12 16:19
I suppose say if I was receiving change from shopping and eating I would say Doumo, and if someone helped me with directions somewhere Id say Arigatou?

In the UK we would use thanks very much for stuff that actually dosent need thanking that much, and it dosent make us look daft. Im hoping its the same thing over in japan?
by MayMay (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/2/12 17:37
It can actually be considered rather rude to just say "doumo" to someone, even in the supermarket or at a restaurant. If you are using such casual language to a stranger, it gives the feeling that you put yourself way above the other person on the social scale.

You often hear older people say this, but that's because the have "earned" their social status by their long service to society. Basically, the older you are in Japan the more social status points you get.

Just "Arigatou" is a bit better, but still too casual to be considered "safe" polite behavior.

The best is really always to use "Arigatou Gozaimasu". Or even "Doumo Arigatou Gozaimasu" if you want to express your gratitude.

It's such a common mistake to make among many foreigners in Japan to start off by trying to speak casual. It's really not a good idea to be rude on top of speaking broken Japanese. Much better to just speak broken Japanese and try to be polite. You will get much more appreciation from that.
by vastlife rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/2/12 17:57
In my case, in the shpos/restaurants,
"doumo": When they do their official duty.
The waiters/staffs carry my meals or remove used dishes in front of me.
"arigatou(gozaimasu)": Thanks for their kindness even if it's official service.
When waiters offer me "Can I carry (free) hot tea?" after eating.
Then I say "arigatougozaimasu, onegaishimasu", and when they carry it "arigatougozaimasu" again.
Yes, it's not daft/servile, only to show my respect/thanks to their works.

BTW, "gochisousama-deshita": When I leave from the restaurant for cooks or I call staffs to pay a bill at the cash desk.

See also: How to talk to Japanese shop people?
http://www.japan-guide.com/forum/quereadisplay.html?0+98598

AK, thanks for your clear explanation.
I can't understand the situation that "doumo" is light and "arigatou" is too much,
so I tought maybe it's for close friends?
by ajapaneseboy rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/2/13 02:48
Lovely, great to hear all your opinions. I guess being a gaijin and all it would be safest to use arigatou and gozaimasu sometimes. I'd rather make a good appearance than being rude. Well I hope I wont hurt anyone if I are too thankful. Like using D A G when recieving change etc, though maybe I sound like a fool then :)
by Gifu Joe (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/2/13 03:52
I noticed during my stay in Japan that when being thanked in shops and such, staff mostly went straight to the abbreviated "gozaimasu"!

Consequently I followed suit and used that in return and for pretty much all situations. I didn't feel it was too much since I *was* pretty grateful for any service staff who managed to negotiate my lack of Japanese!
by ... (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/2/13 06:26
Sorry but the abbreviated "gozaimasu"? Is it just gozaimasu or something before it? Just a bit confused sorry :)
by Gifu Joe (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/2/13 08:07
Yes, just "Gozaimasu!" without the "Arigato" bit in front of it.
by ... (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/2/13 11:44
Gifu Joe and to ...(guest),

Just "gozaimasu" is not right. It must have had an "arigatou" before it, but the sounds swallowed so much that it could have sounded like "aggato ... gozaimasu!" with a big emphasis on the second part.


Gifu Joe,
Umm. In my mind, "Arigatou" is proper "Thank you," so sounds friendly, and can be used for friends or shop clerks who helped you, etc. But "doumo" is (at least to me) a light acknowledgment/gratitude, so this is more detached - for people you are not close with.
by AK rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/2/13 14:07
Just "Gozaimasu!" sound like a joke or mishearing.
I think maybe as AK said, they strongly shout at some izakayas, old Japanese-restaurants, fishmongers or greengrocers?
Yes, I often hear they vigorously shout "iRASSHA!" for "irasshaimase"(welcome).
by ajapaneseboy rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/6/2 01:16
BTW, I found very useful video teaching how to say "Thank you" in Japanese.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ELb6cXXXTGU
by jOP (Katsura Sunshine)
by ajapaneseboy rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/6/2 22:12
Joe,

Vastlife says it all.

But perhaps "your point" may be that you are looking for the term "sumimasen." Indeed, "arigatou (gozaimasu)" may not seem to be as commonly used among the locals as "sumimasen" is, so "sumimasen" may sound more natural to you, and even to a lot of locals perhaps.

But I graduated this snobby girls' school in Tokyo where they taught you not to use "sumimasen" because it's not a proper word for respected daughters to use. So I agree that "arigatougozaimasu" is the safest. I actually use it all the time (with the -gozaimasu, of course, because without it it would be rude) when I ask the way to some place to a stranger or when I drop something and a stranger picks it up and hands it to me.

It's up to you.
by Uco (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/6/2 22:44
My Japanese teacher whose more 60 over years old said that "Domou" is a very nice way of saying thanks.

The word "arigatou" itself has no meaning, unless you say "Domou arigatou gozaimasu" or "Arigatou gozaimasu". Adding "gozaimasu" behind is a polite/formal way of expressing your thanks.
by bebegurl rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/6/3 18:30
The word "arigatou" itself does have great meaning. No Japanese native would deny that. Bebegurl, you're probably lost in translation.
by Uco (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/6/3 19:57
@bebegurl
Yes, "doumo" is a very nice way of saying thanks, as a casual/friendly salutation.

But as some posters said before, "arigatou" means clearly "thank you".
If I had to say then "doumo" itself has no meaning, it's like "how", "what" or something in English.
I think you misheard your teacher's explanation.
by ajapaneseboy rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/6/10 15:24
Hey Uco / ajapaneseboy

I'm very sure they I didn't misheard cos my sensei highlighted it more than once and the whole class heard him.

Does anyone know what is the difference between urusei and urusai?

Sometimes I used certain words/phrases learnt from watching Japanese drama and my bf will say it's a different meaning. Like I used "Nanda?" and he asked you want to make a fight? But the character said it in a standard normal tone. Sometimes it drives me up the wall!
by bebegurl rate this post as useful

Re: Use of domo/arigato 2013/6/10 22:48
@bebegurl
This thread is used for saying "thank you" in English.
So, you may want to "ask a new question" for new thread.

BTW, "urusei and urusai" are like "wanna and want to" in my poor English.
And "Nanda?" is a bit rude, the speaker is irritated or looks down on the opponent.
I often watch it in manga, some cool charactors say so with a blank expression on his face, and others with disgust.
I have admiration for your close observation to study.
by ajapaneseboy rate this post as useful

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