ませんか vs. ましょか

Can somebody please tell me the difference between when you would use ませんか vs. ましょか? Because I’m reviewing Genki and wondering. They’re presented in lessons 3 and 5.

Thank you!

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My understanding is something like;

ませんか = Could you do something
ましょうか = Let’s do something

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ましょうか is direct, it translates as “Let’s do x”
ませんか is indirect (and therefore more polite), translates closer to “Should we…?”

Edit: bunpro has this great forum post about this:

Doesn’t mention ましょうか directly, but in general, the less direct you are, the more polite it is (which is true for english as well)

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Or “Why don’t we…?” The same construction is used in English sometimes too.

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Ah yes, those were the words I was looking for!

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Ah yes, I forgot about Bunpro thank you!

I was definitely over thinking this :joy:

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