Domo Arigato vs. Arigato Gozaimasu (Gozaimashita)

Domo (どうも) is a convenient Japanese phrase with various meanings, commonly used when greeting, appreciating, or apologizing.

You can hear the word in everyday life in Japan, both by itself and with others, such as Arigato (Gozaimasu or Gozaimashita) or Sumimasen (Suimasen).

Domo is a casual phrase in the former case used alone, meaning hi, thanks, or sorry, depending on the context and the situation, 

while, in the latter, used with others, it means very and adds a profound sense to the following word.

Domo Arigato vs. Arigato Gozaimasu (Gozaimashita)

Domo Arigato vs Arigato Gozaimasu or Gozaimashita

Here, let’s look at the example with Arigato (ありがとう), also spelled Arigatou, meaning thank you.

Domo can mean thanks on its own, while Domo Arigato is the word for thank you so much in English. 

Although the latter phrase is similar to Arigato Gozaimasu, meaning thank you very much, they are different in usage or the target. 

As in Arigato vs. Arigato Gozaimasu, Domo Arigato is typically used with people like friends and those younger than you.

Meanwhile, Arigato Gozaimasu is for strangers and superiors.

Domo Arigato Gozaimasu (Gozaimashita)

You can also add Domo to Arigato Gozaimasu and Arigato Gozaimashita.

Domo Arigato Gozaimasu is a present tense with Masu/ます at the end, used right after something you will appreciate has been done.

With the ending Mashita/ました, Domo Arigato Gozaimashita is the perfect tense of Domo Arigato Gozaimasu, used when or after the event involving what you are thanking for has ended.

Incidentally, we often use the latter phrase Domo Arigato Gozaimashita after company dinners or business meetings.

But since Domo Arigato Gozaimasu (Gozaimashita) has almost the same nuance as Arigato Gozaimasu (Gozaimashita), you can actually use them interchangeably.

The same goes for Domo Arigato and Arigato.


Hi, I'm Tomo, a Japanese blogger living in Niigata Prefecture, Japan. For the purpose of enriching your life, I would like to introduce things about Japan on this blog, especially unique Japanese products, cooking recipes, cultures, and facts and trivia.

5 Responses

  1. Ken Le says:

    Thank you Tomo, I love your blogs, keep on the good work! I was in Niigata 7 years ago on my way to Sado island to paddle the Taraibune; the technique and the paddle are identical to the basket boat of Vietnam.

    • Tomo says:

      Thank you for your comment, Ken!
      I’m on the mainland and have not been to Sado for years, but as you know, the island is full of attractions!
      Now, independent travel to Japan is possible, and whenever you want to come back, we Niigatarian always welcome you!

  2. Lucas says:

    Arigato Gozaimasu, Tomo 🙂

  1. September 8, 2022

    […] Domo Arigato vs. Arigato Gozaimasu (Gozaimashita) […]

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