I've usually seen in my little Mandarin learning experience, that when people express wait, they usually use . However, I just noticed the following phrase in Sina Weibo:


I know means please, and I looked up in my dictionary, that is a little and is wait. So the sentence seems to express please wait a little..., which is fine in the context (I tried reloading the data, for your information).

So what's the difference between and ?

4 Answers 4


None. They are synonyms, although they also have separate different meanings.

稍等 = 稍候 = wait a minute.

等候 = 等 = 候, although 候 is rarely used as a single character with this meaning.


There is no differences between 等 and 候. Both means "to wait". You can also put them together as a word 等候, with the same meaning - to wait.

However, 候 sounds like the usage in classical Chinese (archaic Chinese), and therefore rarely use as only one single character in modern Chinese.


For the purpose of stating "please wait", 等 and 候 both mean the "to wait".

However they each have other meanings in different context. For example, 等 also means "level" (as in 等級, 等地). 候 also means "to serve" (as in 伺候).


We say“我等你”. It means"I wait for you". But we don't say“我候你”

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