Birthdays are a great opportunity to get closer to the person of your interest or to deeply move your beloved one. In this article I will tell you some simple Japanese phrases to convey your feelings by wishing your love interest „Happy birthday!“.
The basics of saying „Happy birthday“ in Japanese
Let’s start with the universal expression you can use with everyone – family, friends, acquaintances and so on:
誕生日おめでとう！ – tanjoubi omedetou!
or if you aren’t that close yet, the more formal:
お誕生日おめでとうございます！ – otanjoubi omedetou gozaimasu!
Note: While the more formal phrase feels a bit more distant, men often consider the formal speech as more feminine. Of course it depends on personal preference, but if you want to appeal to a man, I’d go with the formal phrase!
In addition you can also use the following sentences:
よい一日を！ – yoi ichinichi wo!
いい誕生日になりますように！ – ii tanjoubi ni narimasu you ni!
楽しい時間を過ごせますように！ – tanoshii jikan wo sugosemasu you ni!
素敵な一年になりますように！ – suteki na ichinen ni narimasu you ni!
The first three sentences mean something like „Have a good one!“, „Hope it’s a good one!“ and „I hope you have a blast!“. The last example setences is to wish someone a wonderful year ahead.
Note: „ように“ at the end of a sentence can be translated as „I hope …“ so you can easily put together your own wishes. So be creative!
The problem with these expressions is that they are commonly used and also don’t let you carry on the conversation. So don’t let this chance pass and incorporate one of the following phrases into your birthday message:
How to use someone’s birthday to ask for a date
So let’s say you’ve just meet and haven’t really done much together, you can use the following more formal phrase to tell your love interest that you are looking forward to seeing him or her again:
またお会いできるのを楽しみにしています。 – mata oai dekiru no wo tanoshimi ni shite imasu.
If you prefer a more straightforward approach you could ask for a dinner together:
ご飯でもいきましょう。 – gohan de mo ikimashou.
If you and your love interest are already familiar with each other, the following expressions like „Let’s hang out again soon!“ and „Let’s celebrate next time!“ might be appropriate:
今度遊びにまた行こう（ね）。 – kondo asobi ni mata ikou (ne).
今度お祝いしよう（ね）。 – kondo oiwai shiyou (ne).
Note: If you are a guy you might want to drop the „ね“ unless you want to sound a bit feminine.
For everyone who’s a bit shy and insecure, you could say something like „I’d like to celebrate, but what should I do?“:
お祝いしたいんだけど、何がいいかな？ – oiwai shitai n’dakedo, nani ga ii ka na?
How to convey your feelings
This section is for everyone who is already in a relationship and wants to express how lucky one feels to be together. For example:
（name）と出会えてよかった。 – (name) to deatte yokatta.
which means „I’m glad I met you.“
If you want to thank him or her you can for example say: „The time I’m spending with you is very important to me. Thank you always.“
（name）と一緒にいる時間がとても大切です。いつもありがとう。 – (name) to issho ni iru jikan ga totemo taisetsu desu. itsumo arigatou.
Alternatively you could express your gratitude by saying „Thank you for staying by my side.“:
そばにいてくれてありがとう。 – soba ni ite kurete arigatou.
If you want to express your wishes for a future together:
これからもよろしくね。 – kore kara mo yoroshiku ne.
This is a typical Japanese phrase that is not solely used between lovers but also with friends, etc. There isn’t really a good English translation but what it basically means that you want to be on good terms in future, too.
The next expression is a classic in many cultures and languages:
大好き！いつまでも一緒にいようね。 – daisuki! itsu made mo issho ni iyou ne.
which means „I love you! Let’s stay together forever!“. It’s pretty bold but if your partner feels the same, she or he will surely be delighted.
If you are not living together, the following sentence is an option, too:
大好きな（name）に早く会いたいな。 – daisuki na (name) ni hayaku aitai na.
This way you can express the longing for your significant other and say: „I want to see my beloved … soon.“. The „な“ at the end adds more emotion and emphasis but is mainly used by men. If you want to say it out loud, make the „a“ long. It gives off the feeling that you start daydreaming.
Extra: belated birthday wishes
In case of his or her birthday is already over, no sweat! You should simply use another phrase:
遅れちゃったけど、お誕生日おめでとう！ – okurechatta kedo, otanjoubi omedetou!
which basically means „Happy belated birthday!“, while the following more polite or formal phrase can be translated as „I’d like to wish you a happy belated birthday.“:
遅ればせながらお誕生日おめでとうございます。 – okurebase nagara otanjoubi omedetou gozaimasu.
Maybe you could make up for your belated wishes with a song. Here’s the Japanese version of the world-famous birthday song:
The lyrics are very simple:
minna de oiwai
If you enjoyed this article, make sure to bookmark my page and keep coming back as I will add new and fresh content to help you with love life.
Moreover, if you need some phrases to compliment a Japanese girl please refer to the article below:
6 pickup lines to say to Japanese girls