Moving to Japan

Japan, land of the rising sun is located off the Pacific coast of East Asia. Indeed, we find that Japanese culture is very different than Western culture and attracts a lot of foreigners every year. Japan has one of the highest personal incomes of the world and still ranks first in the major financial centers of the world. This country is one of the safest and cleanest in the world. In addition, Japanese food and its lifestyle are very famous around the world. Moving is a big step in your life, let us provide you more information about the country.

Good to know

In Japan, everyone speaks Japanese. Depending on where you go, the Japanese will probably speak a local dialect. Almost part of japanese people don’t speak english verry well, especially in smaller cities and old generations. Therefore, it is better and more interesting for you than you thought to take Japanese classes before your move.

If you go to Japan from Europe or America you will have a jet lag because you have to know that the Japanese archipelago is 9 hours ahead of GMT / UTC, and has no time system for winter and summer time.

In 1912, the Tokyo Chuo line introduced wagons only  for womans to separate female students from man students during the rush hours until the Second World War broke out. Since 2005, most of the Tokyo Line companies have ladies’ wagons. Some of them allow these wagons access to boys who are in primary school. Signals on the platforms indicate which cars, days and hours they are reserved for women.

The day is punctuated by three meals (meshi), breakfast, lunch and dinner. The breakfast is a bowl of white rice and a soup  “Miso”. Lunch is a quick meal, often prepared in advance or bought in mini-markets that are often taken at work or at school. Dinner is the most traditional meal. It consists of several hot and cold dishes served at the same time. You should know that the Japanese meal has no dessert except during special days. We usually finish the meal with a seasonal fruit.

Japanese food is known as a very healthy food consisting of many vegetables, fish, soups and white rice. A number of dishes are accompanied by wasabi and soy sauce.

Such as: SUSHIS are almost more popular in Europe than in Japan, where they are consumed occasionally. These are assortments of sweetened vinegar rice and slices of raw fish (also known as sashimi), as well as vegetables. A rice ball simply covered with a sashimi will be called Nigiri, while a roll of rice and fish wrapped in Nori seaweed is a Maki. They are served with wasabi and soy sauce.

YAKITORIS These small skewers of grilled meat or fish covered with a brown and thick sauce which gives them a very particular and very appreciable flavor. Often prepared with chicken, however, there are all kinds: beef, mushrooms, peppers, salmon.

FUGU is one of the Japanese culinary specialties for a good reason: this fish, if it is poorly prepared, can keep the traces of a deadly poison for the man who eats it. Japanese cooks undergo special training to be able to safely prepare sashimi from this fish.

TAIYAKIS These are fish-shaped cupcakes made of a dough similar to waffle dough and stuffed with sweet red bean paste, cream or chocolate.

Administrative formalities

Before moving to Japan, you will first have to perform various steps to be able to settle in the country in the best conditions.

A visa is required for a stay of more than three months. If you plan to work in Japan, know that there are 27 differents residency status and you will need a work contract established by a company located in the territory. In all cases, you will need to obtain a certificate of eligibility. The process of obtaining may take up to 6 months, and some employers may apply for you. Once you have obtained the certificate, you will be able to apply for a residence permit, which will determine the activities you can perform and the authorized duration of your stay.

The only solution for a foreigner to stay in the country for a long time is to obtain a visa. The work visa is the one that offers the most chances of being able to live in Japan, but it is not the only one. There are other more specific ones such as the journalist visa, the investor visa.

For more information about the different types of existing visa I invite you to visit the following links:

Cost of living

As in France, there is a minimum wage in Japan, it is not fixed nationally but at the regional level. Each prefecture of Japan applies its own minimum wage. In Tokyo, it is 907 Yen per hour. Okinawa, Miyazaki, Oita, Kumamoto, Nagasaki, Kochi or even Tottori offer the lowest hourly rate in the country with a minimum wage of 677 Yen. The average hourly wage in the country is 780 yen per hour.

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