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For learning: Japanese
Base language: Japanese
Category: Language



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    いらっしゃいませ and いらっしゃい is equally interpreted as "Welcome". The former is more formal tone than the latter.

    ようこそ can be also interpreted as "Welcome", but it differ from above, you welcome them in public place (ex. large exhibition) or in larger area (ex. region, town or city). You use いらっしゃい(ませ) to welcome them in the place you or your organization own, for example, in your office, your home or your house.

    IT IS NOT GENERAL USE BUT some regions in Japan (for example, Kanazawa), they use ようこそ to show their appreciation("Thank you"). You can consider it as the reduced sentence for "Thank you for coming." Just for reference - over 90% of Japanese use this word to show their welcome.

    「いらっしゃいませ」も「いらっしゃい」も同じ Welcome です。前者は後者より改まった言い方です。

    「ようこそ」も Welcome と解釈できないことはないのですが、上の2つとは違い、公共の場所(規模の大きい展示会など)や広い場所(町や都市など)に迎え入れる場合に使います。「いらっしゃい(ませ)」は自分や自分が所属している組織が所有する場所、例えば事務所や家に迎え入れる場合に使います。

    これは決して一般的な使い方ではないのですが、地域によっては(金沢など)、「ようこそ」を感謝の意味で使うこともあります。"Thank you for coming" の省略形と考えるといいでしょう。ほんの参考情報です。90%以上の日本人が、この言葉を歓迎の意味で使います。

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