Wishing others a Happy New Year in Japanese!

Happy New Year everyone! けましておめでとうございます! We hope you’ve enjoyed a great time with your loved ones during these holidays. How did you spend the New Year?

In Japanese, you can say Happy New Year with various expressions, depending on whether you’re in December or January!

Congratulating Others…?
Variations of saying “Happy New Year!”
“I look forward to working with you in the New Year!”
Indicating “This Year”

Congratulating Others…?


What a wonderful expression to get familiar with. The word けまして is based on the ideogram ““, composed of the sun (日) and the moon (月). This kanji has many meanings, among which you’ll find ‘bright’, ‘dawn’, and ‘changing’.

けましておめでとう is celebrating the dawn of a new year, or simply speaking, the new year’s opening. おめでとうございます is the phrase you’ll use for congratulations in various situations, marriages, birthdays, graduations…

These are some ways in which you can use おめでとうございます:
Congratulations for your marriage.
Congratulations for passing the exam.

Happy birthday.

Variations of saying “Happy New Year!”

You’ll also find several variations for Happy New Year.

Happiness to you on the dawn [of a New Year]

Happy New Year!

Happiness to you on the dawn of a New Year.
If you’re late to give your wishes, you’ll have to politely apologies.

It is a little late, but Happy New Year.

“I look forward to working with you in the New Year!”


When wishing a Happy New Year, you’ll also say 今年ことしもどうぞよろしくおねがいします which can be translated as “we’ll be counting on you this year as well”. Keep in mind that the expression can’t be translated easily. Depending on the context, it may have various meanings.

When following new year wishes, the phrase calls for a good relationship this year as well. For most Japanese, it’s a custom greeting mostly used when you are around your colleagues and clients.


Indicating “This Year”

‘This year’ can be express with 今年ことし, more natural and friendly or with 本年ほんねん, in a formal document and polite letter.

Happy New Year. Without change, I will be counting on you this year as well.

おくればせながら、本年ほんねんもどうぞ よろしくおねがいいたします。
It’s a little late, but I will be counting on you this year as well.

挨拶あいさつおくれましたが、けましておめでとうございます。 本年ほんねんもどうぞよろしくおねがいいたします。
I am late to present my salutations, but Happy New Year. I will be counting on you this year as well.

When giving your wishes to your boss, make sure to thank him for his guidance!

This year as well, I will be counting on your guidance.

Coto Japanese Academy is a unique Japanese Language School in Iidabashi Tokyo, we offer relaxed and fun conversational lessons for all levels of Japanese learner. Coto Japanese Academy prides itself on its community atmosphere and fun lessons that focus on creation of opportunities to speak and learn Japanese. If you are interested in studying Japanese in Tokyo – please visit our contact page here.