Acronyms, contractions and abbreviations in Japanese

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Acronyms, contractions, acronyms and abbreviations are part of our lives, thinking about it, in this article we are going to talk about the acronyms used in Japan. Both acronyms using Roman letters and the abbreviations that use Japanese ideograms.

The Japanese love to abbreviate words, during a conversation it is already common to eat some parts of the sentence. There are thousands of word abbreviations. Generally names of industries, groups and terminologies are contractions or abbreviations.

Acronyms, contractions and abbreviations in Japanese

Contractions and abbreviations in the Japanese language

Words in Japanese are written with characters that represent syllables (morae), instead of phonemes as in English. Traditionally when a word or phrase is abbreviated, it usually preserves a few syllables and is easily recognizable.

In some cases, the abbreviated word uses a different reading of the ideograms that make up the word. Sometimes ideograms of the first and second words are used to form one. as in the case of Tokyo Daigaku [東京大学] turn all [東大].

If you go to and search using the tag #abbr; you will come across several words that also serve as abbreviations of phrases or other more complex and specific words. The Japanese really love to abbreviate words.

Responsive Table: Scroll the table to the side with your finger >>
ContractionKanjiWordFull KanjiMeaning/Notes
akiba秋葉akihabara秋葉原Tokyo Otaku District
bukatsu部活bukatsudo部活動after-school club (extracurricular) activity
denwa 電話keitaidenwa携帯電話cell phone
keitai携帯keitaidenwa携帯電話mobile phone
kōkō高校kōtōgakkō高等学校high school
kokuren国連Kokusai Rengō国際連合The United Nations
makkuマックmakudonarudoマクドナルドMc. Donald
mukkuムックmagazine + bookマガジン + ブックA mix of magazine and book
nikkei日経Nihon Keizai Shinbun日本経済新聞Japan Economic Times
nodai農大Tōkyō Nōgyō Daigaku東京農業大学Agricultural University of Tokyo
nyūkan入管Nyūkoku Kanrikyoku入国管理局Immigration Office
odakyū小田急Odawara Kyūkō Dentetsu小田原急行電鉄Odawara Express Electric Railway (Odakyū Electric Railway)
wave音大ongaku daigaku音楽大学music university
pokemonポケモンpoketto monsutaポケットモンスターThe well-known video game and animation franchise.
purikuraプリクラpure kurabu プリントクラブA Print Club automated camera
shāshinシャー芯shāpupen no shinシャープペンの芯lead from a pencil
tocho都庁Tokyo-to Chosha東京都庁舎Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building
Todai東大Tokyo Daigaku東京大学University of Tokyo
Acronyms, contractions and abbreviations in Japanese

Loans from other languages in Japanese

As mentioned, it is very common to abbreviate words, especially when they are borrowed from other languages. For example, the animated series Pretty Cure marketed itself under the abbreviated four-character name purikyua [プリキュア].

Responsive Table: Scroll the table to the side with your finger >>
Meaning/NotesContractionJapanesewhole wordJapanese (whole)
air conditioningeakエアコンand the kondishonaエアコンディショナー
computer pasokonパソコンpāsonaru konpyūtāパーソナルコンピューター
Remote Controlrimokonリモコンrimōto kontorōrāリモートコントローラー
digital camerasdejikameデジカメdejitaru kameraデジタルカメラ
email addressmidメアドmeeruadoresuメールアドレス
family computer (Nintendo)famikonファミコンfamirī konpyūtāファミリーコンピューター
football/socceramefuteアメフトamerikan futtoboruアメリカン・フットボール
love hotel (love hotel) rabuhoラブホrabu hoteruラブホテル
convenience store konbiniコンビニkonbiniensu sutoaコンビニエンス・ストア
Department storedepartmentデパートsutoa departmentデパートメント・ストア
professional wrestlingpuroresuプロレスpurofesshonaru resuringuプロフェッショナル・レスリング
family restaurantfamiresuファミレスfamirī resutoranファミリーレストラン
Acronyms, contractions and abbreviations in Japanese

Japanese Acronyms and Abbreviations with Roman letters

The Japanese also use roman letters in everyday life. Many of the acronyms for places, informatics and organs have their acronym with roman letters. See below for a complete list of Japanese acronyms, acronyms and abbreviations with our letters:

Responsive Table: Scroll the table to the side with your finger >>
3P3 people Japanese slang for threesome
ABCAsahi Broadcasting Corporation.
ADVAdventure game (AVG) adventure game
AISTNational Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology. National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology.
AJJAnthropology of Japan in Japan. Anthropology of Japan in Japan.
A-N-AAll Nippon Airways.
APURitsumeikan Asian Pacific University. Ritsumeikan University of Asia Pacific.
AUMobile phone branch of KDDI. Mobile branch of KDDI.
AVAdult Video. adult video
AVaudio-visual audio-visual
YYAtama YowaiWeak head, ineptitude, malice and senselessness
BGMBackground Music. Background music.
kissesBasketball Japan
BLboys love
BOJBank of Japan. Bank of Japan.
BSBroadcast Satellite (Direct-broadcast satellite; also a prefix for BS stations)
CDEXCenter for Deep Earth Research. Deep Earth Research Center.
CEATECCombined Exhibition of Advanced Technologies. Combined Exhibition of Advanced Technologies.
ChudenChubu Electric Power Company. Chubu Electric Power Company.
CiRACenter for iPS Cell Research and Application, Kyoto University. iPS Cell Research and Application Center, Kyoto University.
CLCentral League (baseball). Central League (baseball).
CMCommercial Message. Commercial message.
CRIEPICentral Research Institute of the Electric Power Industry. Central Research Institute of the Electric Power Industry.
CSCommunication Satellite communication satellite
CTVChukyo Television Broadcasting. Chukyo television broadcast.
CVCharacter Voice. Character voice (voice actor).
DBJDevelopment Bank of Japan. Japan Development Bank.
DPJDemocratic Party of Japan. Japan Democratic Party.
DTdotei [童貞] Virgin
DVdomestic violence Domestic violence
EDEndingAnime or series ending
ETCElectronic Toll Collection. Electronic toll collection.
EVelevator elevator
FAITHFuji Electric.
FNNFuji News Network (TV) Fuji News Network (TV)
FSJFolklore Society of Japan. Japan Folklore Society.
GEOSGlobal Education Opportunities and Services
GFJGoods From Japan. Goods from Japan.
GSGasoline Stand. Gasoline support.
GSIGeospatial Information Authority of Japan. Japan Geospatial Information Authority.
GSJGeological Survey of Japan. Geological Survey of Japan.
GWgolden week Japanese holiday
HHentai / Ecchi It means obscene and erotic 
HAT KobeHappy Active Town Kobe.
HIJapan travel agency. Japan travel agency.
HPhome pagehome page (website)
IC cardcontactless smart card
ICOCAIC Operating Card. IC operation card.
CDIInternational Digital Communications. International Digital Communications.
IdcNInternational Design Center Nagoya (IdcN). International Design Center Nagoya (IdcN).
ALREADYJapan Agricultural Cooperatives. Acronym for Agricultural Cooperatives of Japan.
JABIJapan American Business Initiatives. American business initiatives in Japan.
JACJapan Air Commuter, a subsidiary of JAL.
JACETJapan Association of College English Teachers. Japanese Association of Teachers of English for University Students.
ALREADYJapan Adult Expo. Expo for adults in Japan.
ALREADYJapan Aviation Electronics. Japan Electronic Aviation.
JAEAJapan Atomic Energy Agency. Japan Atomic Energy Agency.
JAFJapan Automobile Federation. Japan Automobile Federation.
JAFRAJapan Association For Railway Advertising. Japan Railway Advertising Association.
JAIAJapan Automobile Importers Association. Japan Auto Importers Association.
JALJapan Airlines. Japan Airlines.
JALTJapan Association of Language Teachers. Japanese Association of Language Teachers.
JAMAJapan Automobile Manufacturers Association. Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association.
JAMSTECJapan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology. Japan Agency for Land-Marine Science and Technology.
JAREJapanese Antarctic Research Expedition. Japanese Research Expedition in Antarctica.
JASCAJapanese Society of Cultural Anthropology. Japanese Society of Cultural Anthropology.
JASDFJapan Air Self-Defense Force. Japan Air Self-Defense Force.
JASSOJapan Student Services Organization. Japan Student Services Organization.
JAWSJapan Anthropology Workshop. Workshop on Anthropology of Japan.
JAXAJapan Aerospace Exploration Agency. Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency.
JAZAJapanese Association of Zoos and Aquariums. Japanese Association of Zoos and Aquariums.
JBICJapan Bank for International Cooperation. Bank of Japan for International Cooperation.
JCjoshi chūgakusei [女子中学生] high school student 
JCPJapan Communist Party. Communist Party of Japan.
JESCOJapan Environment Safety Corporation Japan Environmental Security Corporation
JETJapan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program. Japan Exchange and Education Program (JET).
JETAAJET Alumni Association. JET Alumni Association.
JETROJapan External Trade Organization. Japan Foreign Trade Organization.
JFAJapan Football Association. Japan Soccer Association.
JFCJapan Finance Corporation. Japan Finance Corporation.
GBPJapanese Government Bonds. Japanese government bonds.
JHJapan Highway Public Corporation.
JKJosei KoseiHigh school student associated with “paid dating” and child prostitution industry
JKjōshikiteki ni kangaete [常識的に考えて]Internet slang meaning “think logically”
JLCFSAJapan Long Course Ferry Service Association..
JLPTJapan Language Proficiency Test. Japan Language Proficiency Test.
JMAJapan Medical Association. Japan Medical Association.
TOGETHERJapan National Tourist Organization. Japan National Tourism Organization.
JPJapan Post. Japan Post.
JP or (JPN)JapanUniversal acronyms of the country
JPYJapanese yen to japan currency.
JRJapan Railways. Japan Railways.
JRAJapan Racing Association. Japan Racing Association.
JRCJapan Red Cross. Japan Red Cross.
JSCJapan Society for the Promotion of Science. Japanese Society for the Promotion of Science.
JSCJapan Sports Council. Japan Sports Council.
JSDFJapan Self-Defense Forces Japan Self-Defense Forces (another acronym SDF)
JTJapan Tobacco. Japanese tobacco
JTBJapan Travel Bureau. Japan travel agency.
JTUCJapanese Trade Union Confederation. Japanese Trade Union Confederation.
JUCEJapan Universities Association for Computer Education. Japan University Association for Computer Education.
JVCVictor electronics.
JYHAJapan Youth Hostel Association. Japan Youth Hostel Association.
KDDIJapanese telecommunications company. Japanese telecommunications company.
KeidanrenJapan Federation of Economic Organizations. Federation of Economic Organizations of Japan.
KEPCOKansai Electric Power Company. Kansai Electric Power Company.
KIXKansai International Airport. Kansai International Airport.
KKKabushiki Kaisha company, firm. Kabushiki Kaisha company, company.
KYkūki yomenai [空気読めない]unable to read the air; refers to someone who cannot read a social situation.
KyuudenKyushu Electric Power Company. Kyushu Electric Power Company.
LDKLiving Dining KitchenDining room; type of house where the kitchen is merged with the living room
LDPthe Liberal Democratic Party of Japan the Liberal Democratic Party of Japan
LOLast Order. Last wish.
MCMaster of Ceremonies Master of ceremonies
METIMinistry of Economy, Trade & Industry. Ministry of Economy, Commerce and Industry.
MEXTMinistry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science & Technology. Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology.
MHFGMizuho Financial Group. Mizuho Financial Group.
MICMinistry of Internal Affairs and Communications. Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications.
MITIMinistry of International Trade & Industry (now known as METI). Ministry of International Trade and Industry (now known as MEI).
MLITMinistry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism.
MRIMitsubishi Research Institute.
MUFGMitsubishi UFJ Financial Group.
MVmusic video music video
N'EXNarita Express train. Narita express train.
N'EXNarita Express
NOJNational Astronomical Observatory of Japan.
NECNippon Electric Company.
NFAJNational Film Archive of Japan (NFAJ), which was formerly the National Film Center (NFC); Read more on NFAJ.
NGno good
NGKNagoya-based spark plug company.
NHK(Nihon Hohsoh Kyokai) Japan's state TV & radio broadcaster.
NHKNippon Hōsō Kyōkai [日本放送協会]
NIINational Institute of Informatics. National Institute of Informatics.
NikkanrenJapan Ryokan & Hotel Association.
NikkeirenJapan Federation of Employers' Associations.
NJSNihon Jitensha Shinkōkai日本自転車振興会
NKPNew Komeito Party.
NMENational Museum of Ethnology.
NNNNippon News Network.
NPANational Police Agency.
NPBNippon Professional Baseball.
NRUNational Railway Workers' Union (“Kokuro”). 
NSKNippon Seiko Kabushiki Kaisha.
NTANational Tax Agency.
NTTNippon Telegraph and Telephone Corporation.
OAoffice automation
OBold boyold man (former student), club member, teammate, employee, etc.
OGold girl old lady (former student), club member, teammate, employee, etc.
OLoffice ladyoffice lady (a worker)
OMGOh meu deus!
OPopeningAnime and drama opening
OPAMOita Prefectural Art Museum Read more on the Oita Prefectural Art Museum  
THE Voriginal sound version (video game soundtrack) video game soundtrack
OVAoriginal video animationoriginal video animation (also uses acronym OAV)
PLPacific League (baseball). Pacific League (baseball).
PL KyodanChurch of Perfect Liberty. Church of Perfect Liberty.
PSpolice station Police station
PSJPhotographic Society of Japan. Japan Photographic Society.
PSJPrimate Society of Japan Japan Primate Society
PVpromotional video promotional video (usually music)
RPGrole-playing gameRPG games
SCJScience Council of Japan. Japan Science Council.
SDsuper deformed (super deformed) super warped (super warped)
SDFSelf Defense Forces. Japan's de-facto armed forces. Self-defense forces. Japan's De facto Armed Forces.
SDPSocial Democratic Party. Social Democratic Party.
SEALDsStudents Emergency Action for Liberal Democracy. Student Emergency Action for Liberal Democracy.
SLSteam Locomotive. Steam train.
SMBCSumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation.
SMFGSumitomo Mitsui Financial Group. Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group.
SNSSocial networking service, social website Social networking service, social website
SSservice station service station
STGshooting gameshooting game
SWITZERLANDSuper Urban Intelligence Card. Super Urban Intelligence Card.
TCATTokyo City Air Terminal. Tokyo City Air Terminal.
TEPCOTokyo Electric Power Company. Tokyo Electric Power Company.
ICTTourist Information Center. Tourist Information Center.
TKSCTsukuba Space Center. Tsukuba Space Center.
TPOTime, Place, Occasion Time, Place, Occasion
TQBtei kyū bi [定休日]Regular holiday or fixed day off
TSETokyo Stock Exchange. Tokyo Stock Exchange.
TUCTokyo Union CirculationA union made up of many ex-cops involved in the pachinko industry.
TUJTemple University Japan.
TVOTV Osaka.
UCCUeshima Coffee Company. Ueshima Coffee Company.
ONEunidentified mysterious animalCoined in connection with unidentified flying object
GVvideo game
VTRvideo tele-replayDisplaying pre-recorded images
wwarau [笑う]laugh out loud
WFCWorld Friendship Center in Hiroshima. World Friendship Center in Hiroshima.
YCATYokohama City Air Terminal. Yokohama City Air Terminal.
ZennorenAll-Japan Federation of Management Organization. Japan Federation of Management Organization.

Videos about Japanese Abbreviations

To finish the article, let's leave some videos about abbreviations, acronyms and contractions in the Japanese language:

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