2022 New Year in Japan: How to Say “Happy New Year” in Japanese

Last Updated on 06.01.2022 by Coto Academy

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. In Japanese, you can say the phrase “Happy New Year” with various expressions. It partly depends on whether you’re in December or January, but ultimately it comes down to personal preference, too.

How to “Congragulate” Something in Japanese

けましておめでとうございます。
Akemashite omedetou gozaimasu.

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 and graduations.

These are some ways in which you can use おめでとうございます:

結婚けっこんおめでとうございます。
Gokekkon omedetou gozaimasu.
Congratulations on your marriage.

合格ごうかくおめでとうございます。
Goukaku omedetou gozaimasu.
Congratulations on passing the exam.

誕生日たんじょうびおめでとうございます。
Otanjoubi omedetou gozaimasu.
Happy birthday.
 

Check out our other blog posts on Japanese New Year:

Different Ways to Say “Happy New Year!”

You’ll also find several variations for saying the expression. The most basic one would be akemashite omedetou, but you can change them if you want to spruce something more interesting.

けましておめでとうございます。
Akemashite omedetou gozaimasu.
Happiness to you on the dawn [of a New Year]

新年しんねんおめでとうございます。
Shinnen omedetou gozaimasu.
Happy New Year!

新年、けましておめでとうございます。
Shinnen, akemashite omedetou gozaimasu.
Happiness to you on the dawn of a New Year.

If you’re late to give your wishes, you’ll have to politely apologize.

おくればせながら、けましておめでとうございます。
Okurebasenagara, akemashite omedetou gozaimasu.
It is a little late, but Happy New Year.

どうぞよろしくおねがいいたします。
Douzo yoroshiku onegai itashimasu.
I look forward to being with you.

When wishing a happy new year in Japanese, 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 expressed 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.

けましておめでとうございます。本年ほんねんわりませず、よろしくおねがいもうしあげます。
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!

今年ことしもよろしくご指導しどうくださいますよう、おもうしあげます。
This year as well, I will be counting on your guidance.