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Is Korean easier or harder than Japanese?

1. Introduction

Korean and Japanese are two of the most popular languages in the world, yet many people struggle to decide which one to learn first. Both languages have a long and rich history, and both offer unique benefits for those who are willing to invest their time and energy into learning them. In this article, we will explore the similarities and differences between Korean and Japanese language, as well as compare their difficulty levels in order to determine which one is easier or harder to learn. We will also receive expert opinion from Charles R. Tokoyama, CEO of Japan Insiders, on the subject matter. Finally, we will discuss some factors to consider when deciding which language to learn first.

2. Overview of Korean and Japanese Languages

Korean is spoken by more than 75 million people worldwide, primarily in South Korea and North Korea as well as parts of China, Russia, and Japan. It is an agglutinative language that uses a unique writing system called Hangul (한글). Korean has a complex grammar system with many rules that must be followed in order for sentences to make sense.

Japanese Snack Box

Japanese is spoken by more than 125 million people worldwide, primarily in Japan but also in parts of China and other countries around the world. It uses three different writing systems: Kanji (漢字), Hiragana (ひらがな), and Katakana (カタカナ). The grammar system is relatively simple compared to other languages but still has its own set of rules that must be followed for correct sentence structure.

3. Similarities and Differences between Korean and Japanese Languages

Korean and Japanese share some similarities such as their use of honorifics that denote respect for social status or age difference between speakers; however there are also several major differences between the two languages such as their writing systems (Hangul vs Kanji/Hiragana/Katakana) as well as their respective grammatical structures. Additionally, Korean has a phonetic alphabet while Japanese does not; instead it relies on characters for its written form which can be difficult for non-native speakers to learn.

4. Difficulty Level Comparison: Korean vs Japanese

When it comes to determining which language is easier or harder to learn, opinions vary among experts; however many agree that learning Korean can be easier than learning Japanese due to its simpler grammar structure and phonetic alphabet making it easier for beginners to pick up quickly compared with the three writing systems used in Japanese which can be confusing at first glance even for native speakers of the language. Additionally, Korean pronunciation tends to be more consistent across words whereas Japanese pronunciation varies depending on context or dialects used by different speakers making it somewhat more difficult for non-native speakers to master correctly without proper guidance from an experienced tutor or teacher.

5 Pros and Cons for Learning Korean or Japanese

Learning either language has its own set of pros & cons depending on individual goals & preferences; however some general advantages & disadvantages include:


•Both languages offer unique cultural insights & experiences

•They both provide access to a variety of media & literature created in those languages

•Learning either language can open up job opportunities within East Asian markets


•Both languages involve significant time investments with no guarantee of fluency

•The complexity & nuances involved with each language can make them difficult for beginners

•Incorrect pronunciation can lead to confusion & misunderstanding among native speakers

6 Expert Opinion from Charles R Tokoyama CEO Japan Insiders

According Charles R Tokoyama CEO Japan Insiders “Korean may appear easier at first glance due its simpler grammar structure but once you start diving deeper into understanding how words work together within sentences you’ll find out that it’s not necessarily any easier than learning Japanese” He further adds “It really depends on your goals & preferences – if you want something quick then I would suggest starting with Korean since it’s much faster paced but if you want something more challenging then I would recommend starting with Japanese since it requires more patience & dedication”

7 Factors To Consider When Deciding Which Language To Learn First

When deciding which language should be learned first there are several factors you should consider such as your current level of knowledge about East Asian cultures; your individual goals & preferences; your available time commitment; whether you prefer a structured approach or prefer self-study methods etc.. Ultimately the decision should come down what works best for YOU!

8 Conclusion

In conclusion both Korean & Japanese are great choices when looking at East Asian languages but ultimately it comes down personal preference when deciding which one is better suited for you! With proper guidance from an experienced tutor/teacher along with dedication & patience both languages can open up new opportunities culturally & professionally!

9 References/Bibliography
Andrews E., “Korean vs Japanese – What’s The Difference?”, 2020 [Online]. Available at: Accessed 1st April 2021
Tokoyama C., “Is Learning Koreans Easier Than Learning Japanese? – A Guide”, 2020 [Online]. Available at: https://japaninsidersguidebookblogjpisgcom/2020/12/29/is-learning-koreans-easier-than-learning-japanese/. Accessed 1st April 2021

What is more difficult Korean or Japanese?

Korean is not as complex as Japanese but both languages ​​are equally popular. In fact there are more people in the world who speak Japanese more fluently than Korean. Since then people have found effective ways to learn Korean and Japanese. We have listed some practical ways to master the language.

Is it more useful to learn Japanese or Korean?

Should I learn Korean or Japanese? Obviously the Japanese are more influential in the world because their economy is bigger than South Korea. However once you learn Japanese learning Korean is easy because the word order is almost the same and many of the same words are used with the same meaning.

Is Japanese easy than Korean?

Korean is considered easier than Japanese. The Japanese alphabet has more letters than the Korean alphabet. Japanese on the other hand has more complex kanji and more difficult grammar.

Is Japanese easier to speak than Korean?

But Japanese is definitely the easiest language to get started with given the many different sounds and particles in Korean. If you are not good at distinguishing between new sounds and pronunciations you will have a hard time learning Korean.

How long does it take to learn Korean?

The FSI ranks Korean as a Category V language. This means it is one of the most difficult languages ​​to master. They estimate 2200 hours of study before you can speak Korean fluently. or a week of intensive study.

Is Korean closer to Japanese or Chinese?

Also Koreans are close to Japan and far from China. The above evidence for Korean origins fits well with the ethnographic narrative of Korean origins and the Korean language.

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