How To Say “I’m Sorry For The Late Reply” In Japanese?

I was on leave and did not access my email. When I came back to work, I saw an email from my Japanese customer dated 3 days ago. How do I say “I’m sorry for the late reply” at the start of my email?

Answer by Japanese teacher


(1) ご連絡(れんらく)が遅(おそ)くなりまして大変(たいへん)申(もう)し訳(わけ)ございません。
Gorenraku ga osokunarimashite taihen mooshiwake gozaimasen.
I’m terribly sorry for the late response.


This is one of the very useful set phrases to remember for Japanese communication, especially in writing business emails. “Mooshiwake gozaimasen” (sorry) is the humble form of “sumimasen”. When talking to a customer or superior, we usually humble ourselves so as to increase the level of respect to the latter. Keep this phrase in mind as you may use it frequently.