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Old Aug 8th 2012, 1:54 pm   #1
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Default Should I move to Japan?

Hey all,

First time poster here, sorry if this is somehow in the wrong section of the forum!

I live in Wales in the UK and I've always been fascinated with Japan and it's culture and I'm planning a two week holiday to Tokyo for July next year.

I've been wondering about what it's like to live in Japan. I've been searching online for people's views but responses vary greatly. Some people say that Japan is a great place to live while others say it's only good for a holiday. Some people say it's expensive and others say it's affordable. Some people say Japanese society is discriminatory and racist while others claim to have never experienced any bother at all.

People's experiences of living in Japan seem to vary widely based upon a number of factors such as your particular nationality i.e. Americans seem to have more problems with racism/discrimination than British and other westerners and also where you move to in Japan i.e. Some areas of Japan seem to be more tolerant of foreigners and more affordable to live in than other areas.

But I'd like to hear it from the horse's mouth and ask what should I expect if I decided to take up life in Japan? What are my job/career expectations (I'm studying for a BSc Computer Forensics degree), what is there to do for fun in Japan (I'm very open-minded so I'm up for anything the locals consider to be fun) and how easy is it to befriend locals? Will I experience discrimination and if so, will it be much of an obstacle to life in Japan? What areas of Japan would you recommend living in to a prospective ex-pat such as myself?

If I ever took up life in Japan, I would try my hardest to integrate with their society i.e. observing etiquette and customs, learning the language, experiencing the culture, etc. I don't plan on expecting Japan to cater towards my home culture and lifestyle, I'm more than happy to adapt to how things are in Japan.

Hope to hear from you soon!

Scott
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Old Aug 8th 2012, 8:51 pm   #2
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Default Re: Should I move to Japan?

27 Views and no replies?

Does anyone have some input on this?
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Old Aug 9th 2012, 2:16 am   #3
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Thumbs down Re: Should I move to Japan?

Actually, scratch this thread, Japan seems like a sh*thole. Ill be taking my holiday elsewhere.
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Old Sep 16th 2012, 4:05 pm   #4
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Default Re: Should I move to Japan?

In order to move there you'll need a bachelors degree and work lined up or a Japanese spouse.

You can visit on a student visa or as a tourist for 3 months but its expensive.
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Old Sep 24th 2012, 3:52 pm   #5
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Default Re: Should I move to Japan?

Hi, ref your posting. I arrived in Japan in 83 and lived there for 10 years or thereabouts. Whilst I found some negative things about Japan, after having lived in several other countries since then I must admit, that is was probably the most civilized and safe place I have lived in thus far. The people, whilst being naively racist, were not overtly hostile for the most part - indeed, you might want to try and live in some of the European countries for by comparison.
Luckily I did manage to learn Japanese and even got a Bachelors from a Japanese uni to prove it. The people are exceedingly encouraging and forgiving when you are trying to learn their language, which is an enormous help. Try living in France! Woah, what a nightmare that is in comparison.
There are of course obstacles over there, which you don't encounter, say for example, in Europe.
The cost of life used to be horrendous, but I found that during my last trip there in 2007, that it was actually cheaper in many respects to here in France. But then again, everything is relative.
But, and this is a big but, times may have changed things dramatically perhaps, in the intervening years since I was resident there. But on balance, I would say that I enjoyed my time in Japan more than I have enjoyed living here in France.
Someone asked me what the deciding factor was in that decision and my answer was. The people. I personally found the Japanese wonderful. But then, you get back what you put out I suppose.

Last edited by DT777; Sep 24th 2012 at 3:58 pm. Reason: Missunderstanding
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Old Oct 17th 2012, 9:06 pm   #6
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Default Re: Should I move to Japan?

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Originally Posted by DT777 View Post
Hi, ref your posting. I arrived in Japan in 83 and lived there for 10 years or thereabouts. Whilst I found some negative things about Japan, after having lived in several other countries since then I must admit, that is was probably the most civilized and safe place I have lived in thus far. The people, whilst being naively racist, were not overtly hostile for the most part - indeed, you might want to try and live in some of the European countries for by comparison.
I think it depends on how you define racism. Without doubt you are treated differently because you are a foreigner, but this is more a case of being obviously outside the comfort zone of the avaerage Japanese rather than the nastier overtones of racism that are prevalent in Europe. Despite the fact that most Japanese are very proud of their culture and traditions many Japanese also have an admiration of the west and westeners.

That said, there are scumbags in every country but the only overt racism I have experienced in Japan was from two white (American?) soldiers along the lines of, "What's wrong with you? Can't you find a white woman to ****."

Quote:
Luckily I did manage to learn Japanese and even got a Bachelors from a Japanese uni to prove it. The people are exceedingly encouraging and forgiving when you are trying to learn their language, which is an enormous help. Try living in France! Woah, what a nightmare that is in comparison.
There are of course obstacles over there, which you don't encounter, say for example, in Europe.
The cost of life used to be horrendous, but I found that during my last trip there in 2007, that it was actually cheaper in many respects to here in France. But then again, everything is relative.
But, and this is a big but, times may have changed things dramatically perhaps, in the intervening years since I was resident there. But on balance, I would say that I enjoyed my time in Japan more than I have enjoyed living here in France.
Someone asked me what the deciding factor was in that decision and my answer was. The people. I personally found the Japanese wonderful.
I think there are three keys to enjoying being in Japan.

i) You will never integrate. Learn to live with this from the start.
ii) Learn a code of manners (what form of greetings to use to various people, who to bow to and how low) that will allow you to interact with people without causing offence.
iii) Learn the language as fast as possible.

Quote:
But then, you get back what you put out I suppose.
Not too optimistic for the OP on this one.
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Any reference to tax above is for general interest only and is not intended as professional advice.
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Old Feb 4th 2013, 10:30 am   #7
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Default Re: Should I move to Japan?

requirements for Tokyo relocation
Hi im planning on moving to Japan preferably Tokyo in the not to distant future and ive heard all sorts of things regarding what is required to do so. A spouse is out of the question because im in a long term relationship. Basically education and job opportunities is the main point of understanding in this thread. I am an Enviromental Conservationist by trade this is basically a park ranger. I have achieved up to a level 3 national diploma within this sector. Is this of any use over there? Ive been considering going to uni with these qualifications and do a Bachelors degree in Enviromental science. Is this of any use. Thanks. P.S im not mr scott who is in the post a few before this lol
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Old Feb 4th 2013, 11:09 am   #8
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Default Re: Should I move to Japan?

What are you going to do in Japan ? Do you speak Japanese ? Can you learn ?
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Old Mar 3rd 2013, 12:58 am   #9
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Default Re: Should I move to Japan?

I have lived in Japan for some years. Like many places it has its good points and bad points, especially for a foreign resident. But I think the good points outweigh the bad points. On the good side: where I live the people are extremely friendly and helpful. The transportation system is excellent in most major cities, towns. I particularly like the diet. It's healthy and tasty. Of course there are fast food joints to tempt you. Public safety is very good. No hoodies or muggers. Well, I've never come across them. There are four seasons. Summer is somewhat humid, though. This winter has been extra cold and snowy. If you are a ski enthusiast, then there are quite a number of ski areas. Sport is pretty popular here. The baseball season starts soon and soccer is also pretty popular now. Gyms are available in most cities, large towns. I haven't used the medical system much, but when I have I have found it efficient. I pay national health insurance and generally one has to pay thirty percent for medical costs and prescriptions. Haven't found it too expensive. VAT is 5 percent, including food. I could go on, I guess. At the moment I can't really think of too many bad points. Although, I don't like parts of the environment. Cities are very built up and overhead cables and poles are all over the place, making things look pretty untidy and an eyesore. Housing isn't as solid as back in the U.K. Houses are mainly made of wood and can be somewhat chilly. Of course there are numerous unsightly apartment blocks in some areas. The language is a challenge, of course. But, in major cities some people speak and understand English. There are quite a number of language schools where Japanese learn English. All in all, Japan is a good place to spend some time. An interesting experience.
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Old Mar 3rd 2013, 2:05 am   #10
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Default Re: Should I move to Japan?

May I ask which part of Japan you are living in, Barry? It sounds like you've found a good spot. How about earthquakes? Are they a problem where you are?
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Old Mar 3rd 2013, 2:24 am   #11
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May I ask which part of Japan you are living in, Barry? It sounds like you've found a good spot. How about earthquakes? Are they a problem where you are?
I'd rather, for privacy reasons, keep where I am living confidential. But, it is a rural town on the main island of Honshu, not so far from a major city. Yes, it's a pretty good spot. Earthquakes are not a problem where I live. Though occasionally there are tremors, shakes.
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Old Mar 3rd 2013, 8:45 am   #12
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Default Re: Should I move to Japan?

Yes, very wise.

A friend has just moved (retired) to Penang from Yokohama. I think she got a fair few earthquakes there.
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Old Mar 4th 2013, 12:38 am   #13
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Yes, very wise.

A friend has just moved (retired) to Penang from Yokohama. I think she got a fair few earthquakes there.
There is no history of serious earthquakes where I live. I am not anxious or worried about them. But, I can understand why someone living in an area which has had earthquakes would worry. There is a an underground map, information showing where the main earthquake Fault Lines are.
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Old Mar 4th 2013, 7:47 am   #14
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Default Re: Should I move to Japan?

There was very heavy snow in Hokkaido, northern Japan, over the weekend. Eight people including a woman and her three children died from carbon monoxide poisoning after their car’s exhaust pipe and windows were buried under the snow. This year has seen more snow and colder weather than usual. Actually, it's been the coldest winter I've experienced since I came here.
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Old Mar 4th 2013, 8:23 am   #15
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Default Re: Should I move to Japan?

So much for global warming then
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