Do you know how to say your age in Japanese? Can you tell me how old you are?
In this lesson, let’s learn how to say age in Japanese and what you need to be careful with when you say “years old.”
Learn Japanese Numbers
First, you need to know how to say Japanese numbers from 1 to 10.
As you can see below, we have two ways to say 4, 7, and 9. When it comes to age, you have to use よん (yon) for 4, なな (nana) for 7, and きゅう (kyuu) for 9.
If you don’t know Japanese numbers up to 99 yet, watch the lesson below. I will walk you through how to say Japanese numbers step by step, from 1 to 10, 11 to 19, and 20 to 90.
In case you are wondering why we have two ways to say 4, 7, and 9, I explain the reason in this lesson on YouTube.
Years Old – 歳（さい）sai
“Years old” in Japanese is 歳（さい）SAI. So, you need to add SAI to each number just like you add “years old” in English.
However, when it comes to 1 year old, 8 years old, and 10 years old, pronunciation adjustments are necessary, as below.
- 1 year old = Not “ichi sai” → いっさい i ssai
- 8 years old = Not “hachi sai” → はっさい ha ssai
- 10 years old = Not “juu sai” → じゅっさい ju ssai
And the pronunciation adjustments mentioned above are in effect even for numbers bigger than 10.
To say “38 years old,” for instance, you apply the pronunciation “ha ssai” for the “8 years old” part and say さんじゅうはっさい san juu ha ssai.
You do the same for “1 year old” いっさい i ssai and “10 years old” ju ssai as examples below.
- 11 years old = juu i ssai
- 51 years old = go juu i ssai
- 81 years old = hachi juu i ssai
- 40 years old = yon ju ssai
- 70 years old = nana ju ssai
I hope this lesson helped you to see how to say your age in Japanese!
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