Japanese announcements at the station

People who live in Japan have many chances to ride trains during their daily commutes or for some other reason. Each time you hear a lot of announcements at the station or in a train, don’t you? My students often ask me, “What are they saying?” So, I am solving this mystery today.

Well, the first word you remember and can guess its meaning on your own is “mamonaku”, isn’t it? The sentence starting with “mamonaku” is usually as follows:

1. Mamonaku san-ban-sen ni Shibuya-yuki ga mairimas.
mamonaku: soon
san-ban-sen ni: to platform number 3
Shibuya-yuki: (a train) going to Shibuya
mairimas: to come
Because it is dangerous when a train is approaching, the next announcement will be like this.
2. Hakusen/ kiiroi sen no uchigawa ni sagatte, o-machi kudasai.
hakusen: the white line
kiiroi sen: the yellow line
uchigawa ni: on the inside
sagarimas: to move back sagatte: the imperative form
kudasai: please o-machi kudasai: please wait. (“O” is an honorific prefix.)
Many warnings are starting from now.
3. Teniomtsu o door ni hasamarenai you go-chui kudasai.
tenimotsu: handbag
door ni: by the door
hasamu: to put something between hasamareru (a passive form): to be put  between, to get caught in hasamarenai (a negative passive form): not to get caught in
you: do something in a such way that… hasamarenai you go-chui kudasai.: Be careful so that you don’t get your handbags caught.
chui: care, attention go-chui kudasai: Please be careful, Please watch out, Please take caution (“go” is an honorific prefix.)
The warnings continue...
4. Door ga shimarimas. Go-chui kudasai.
shimarimas: to close
When the doors close, you should not do the following.
5. Kakekomi josha wa o-yame kudasai.
kakekomi: a dash/dart/rush
josha: boarding
yamemasu: to stop/quit
The next warning is very common at the London Tube, too. It is imprinted in my mind because I always heard it.
6. Ashimoto ni go-chui kudasai.
ashimoto: at your feet
You have to mind your step because of the following reason.
7. Densha to homu no aida ga hiroku aiteorimas.
densha: a train
homu: a platform
aida: between
hiroku: widely
aiteimas: to be open aiteorimas: a humble form
And, there is of course information about the station or train transfer.
8. Tsugi wa Shinjuku. Norikae no go-annai des.
tsugi: the next one/stop
norikae: a train transfer
annai: guidance, information (“go” is an honorific prefix.)
I hope this helps you. From tomorrow, please try listening to the announcements carefully at the station or in a train. I really think you will understand the meaning now.

Trains during rush hour in Tokyo are so packed that I can’t stand it, but Japanese trains are punctual and some have TV screens on the wall. I think there are many impressive points.
Also, there are funny trains in the countryside to attract customers. I took a shamisen train in Aomori in which you can enjoy a shamisen live performance. A kotatsu train makes you warm inside of the train during winter. An omocha (toy) train looks like a little toy museum. Sleeping trains are now very popular among girls because they have girls’ parties on them.

*Watch the video, too!

39 件のコメント:

  1. This was really helpful! I totally love your blog! Please post more often!:)) Arigato gozaimasu.

    1. Shen san, do itashimashite.
      If there are any phrases which you can not get at the station, please tell me.

  2. Excellent stuff. I was looking for this info and I landed on your blog. I traveled in Japan extensively recently and the train announcements have etched in my mind.

    1. I should add more because this post is very popular. In fact JR and metro have different announcements

  3. sensei :) how about in bus? so curious what the driver said to us ? I think He said like : hold tight the handle or something? haha just wondering..
    thanks for the explanation :)

    1. jovan san, you are right. A bus driver says that. I will carefull listen to what he says next time and explain it to you.

    2. Jovan san, In a bus I usually take I hear that "bus ga tomaru made, seki o otachi ni naranaide kudasai." which means "Please don't stand up until the bus stops." Or some drivers say, "bus ga tomatte kara, seki o otachi kudasai." This means that please stand up after the bus stops.
      "Hold tight the handle" is like "tesuri ni otsukamari kudasai."

    3. I remember hearing "hassha itashimasu". It just means something like "I will start driving". The bus driver kind of mumbles it to himself/herself!

  4. Okamoto さん、このアナウンスの動画を日本語で文にしていただけませんか。

    1. Tan san, このビデオの後半はほとんどが駅名です。この電車がとまる駅を伝えています。

      停車駅は半蔵門線内 押上までの各駅と、曳船、西新井、北千住、草加、新越谷、越谷、浅間台、春日部、東武動物公園から先、終点までの各駅です。
      ていしゃえきは はんぞうもんせんない [おしあげ]までのかくえきと [ひきふね、にしあらい、きたせんじゅ、そうか、しんこしがや、こしがや、せんげんだい、かすかべ、とうぶどうぶつこうえん]からさき、しゅうてんまでの かくえきです。

    2. Okamoto さん、ありがとごさいます。このページはとても便利です。

    3. Tan さん、やくにたって、うれしいです。にほんごの べんきょうを がんばってね。

    4. The Express bound for Kuki(TI-02) is arriving at Track 4.
      please wait behind the white line.
      We will stop are each station until Oshiage,Hikifune,kitasenjyu,Nisiarai,So-ka,Shinkosigaya,Koshigaya,Sengendai,Kasukabe,this train will stop at all station to the tobu-do-butukoen to the last stop.

  5. What is the japanese of 'please watch this video'?

  6. What is the japanese of 'please watch this video'?

  7. Thanks for your article. It's very helpfully :)

  8. I am glad that I could help you!

  9. Thank you, I was very curious about these sentences.

    1. I know! You hear these announcements constantly. You must be curious.

  10. Hello! I like your blog so much! I have one question. When you travel (e.g. plane, train) and you want to ask the person next to you to stand up for some reason how to ask polite? Tatte kudasai sounds a little bit like an order to me in this case. Thank in advance!

    1. Hi Miglena, arigato. My answer to your question; "(chotto) tatte itadakemasen ka?" is more polite than "tatte kudasai."
      If you try to pass in front of the next person to you to go to bathroom or something, the best request would be "shitsurei shimas. chotto mae o (tootte mo) ii des ka?" (しつれいします。ちょっと まえを とおっても いいですか?/ Excuse me. May I pass in front of you?)

      Were you looking for these answers?

  11. How about announcement inside the train? For example: departure, arrival at station, emergency brake activation, changing track, etc.

  12. How about announcement inside the train? For example: departure, arrival at station, emergency brake activation, changing track, etc.

  13. Konnichiwa, okay. I'll write about those. Shosho omachi kudasai !

  14. could you plaese translate the contents inside kanachu local busses.

    Thanks in advance

    1. Hi, Thank you for reading my blog. I took a kanachu bus two weeks ago! I will listen to their announcement next time.

  15. Thanks for these information. Really helpful.. 😁👍

    1. Hi Citra san, It's my pleasure! do itashimashite.

  16. this might sound silly but it souns like, chu gocha, que gocha ari gocha etc

  17. haha.. I know it's very complicated.

  18. Hi, I was wandering if you know the word "Kara" when at an airport i hear something like ANA Kara Tokyo (maybe not tokyo but i hear like ANA Kara or Vanilla Air Kara)
    I wouldn't have thought they'd say From when they want to say to. So i just need help in understanding this use thank you

    1. Thank you for your comment. I think that kara means from. Noun + kara should be from + noun.
      I'll go to Haneda airport in two weeks. I'm going to listen to the announcements and figure it out!

  19. Hello, I love your blog, thanks for your translations!
    I would like to understand this one:
    Correct me if I am wrong but I would translate it as:
    When the door closes, don't do anything and wait for the next train please. Do you agree?

    And another one: 足を組んだり、前の方に出したりしますと他のお客様のご迷惑となりますのでご注意下さい。

    I would translate as: When you put both of your legs on the front, please do not bother other customers?
    I am very not sure of this one...

    Thank you a lot!!!

    1. こんにちは。コメントありがとうございます!

      Overall, your understanding is right.

      「ドアが閉まりかけた」is not "the door closes". Technically, it's "the door is half closing". That's what かける means.
      I wrote about「無理をしないで・・・」in my different post. Please read it.

      「足を組む」is crossing your legs.
      They even instruct you how you sit!!

    2. Arigatou for my first question ^^


      So is it more an instruction? Is it literally: Cross your legs when you put them in front of you so you do not bother other customers?

    3. No. If you cross your legs or put them on the front, that may bother other passengers. So, correct sitting posture is good!