Have you ever thought about moving to a new place? Deciding to relocate is not that easy; it needs lots of research and evaluation. Japan is home to some of the most significant towns and cities globally; the country is peaceful, serene, and classy. Since every country has its set of pros and cons, this list can be helpful and informative to help anyone planning to pack and move to Japan.
Pros of living in Japan
1. The education system is excellent: It doesn’t matter if you attend public or private school. Japan’s education is world-class. Recently, US News and World Report ranked Japan’s school system as the best. In addition, the universities are highly equipped with all the learning materials, thus motivating students to perform excellently.
2. The shopping and convenience stores are world-famous: Japan’s shopping and convenience stores are clean, safe, and neatly arranged. Their shopping centers are pretty awesome, and you can buy almost everything there. Compared to the average American convenience store, they are day and night. Japan is majorly a home to convenient and well-serviced supermarkets and shopping centers.
3. There are many options for work visas: Applying for a visa can be tiresome and time-consuming in other countries, especially if you do not have a corporate sponsor. Japan is, however, open and supports foreign talent. Therefore, it is easy to get a lot of different kinds of work visas while in Japan.
4. The food is varied and delicious: Japanese food is much more than the typical foods in other countries. Plenty of Japanese food is replicated all over the world why—because their food is exceptionally delicious. Furthermore, their food is healthy and tastes excellent; everything from Sushi to “okonomiyaki” to fugu is much more healthy.
5. Public transport: Japanese public transport is unbelievably awesome. Everything in Japan is modern; their subways, railways, and buses are convenient and stylish. Everything is integrated; hence it is easy to move around the country.
6. Improving your Japanese: Of course, if you went to Japan today, your language skills are going to improve a great deal. In Japan, most people will be interested in practicing their English skills with you. It will, in turn, sharpen your language more than if you were in your home country.
7. Health insurance is easy to get: Japan is among the countries with universal health care; this means that your health is automatically covered. In addition, the state has invested in healthcare insurance to save lives and reduce hardships for people living in Japan.
8. Getting a job is easy: There seems to be an abundance of job opportunities in Japan, unlike at home. The job market is so hot, so you can quickly get a steady job with a good paycheck once you move there.
9. Japan is famous for its culture: Despite Japan being a busy, growing economic center, it is among the world’s best pop-culture sources. The country has plenty of vibrant arts scenes that many young people love.
10. Overall, Japan is clean and comfortable: There are plenty of Western conveniences that can be found in Japan even though it is an Asian country, i.e., Western toilets, free water, stores, supermarkets, and many more. Also, the country has lovely gardens with incredible scenery for vacations and fun.
Cons of living in Japan
1. No individualism: People are different; others prefer group mentality to individualism and vice versa. In Japan, everyone has to be involved in decision-making, and meetings can take forever before a conclusion is made. So people who enjoy a sense of community may take the group mentality in Japan as a pro. However, judging from people’s experiences, sometimes the strict group mentality can get boring.
2. The food: Since the Japanese are an island nation, be sure to find plenty of seafood and rice. Seafood is the cheapest and most available food in most fast food joints. Even though the country has a variety of restaurants all over, you will not feel like it is home. Yes, you can find any foodstuffs because Japan is a big city, but some things are pretty hard to find in Japan.
3. Prejudice against foreigners: Japanese folks in some areas are much more intolerant of foreigners. Some Japanese will click at foreigners, make fun of how they dress or look, laugh at them, or even scoff at them in public. To an extent, prejudice may lead to isolation or even add to your depression.
4. Cost of living is high: The cost of living in Japan is among the highest globally. Being a major industrial city, everything from rent, food, and social amenities is expensive in Japan. Japan is ideally not a cheap place to call home.
5. Renting can be difficult for foreigners: Many landlords in Japan do not rent their apartments to foreigners; the few willing ones may ask for gifts or rent upfronts. Moreover, most apartments in Japan are rented through brokers who do not speak English. Therefore, a foreigner will have to hire an expensive translator.
6. Less than ideal living quarters: It is easy to find decent land for housing in a rural area; however, cities like Japan are congested with more people and fewer houses. You will often be housed in a relatively more little house than what you are used to.
7. Working in Japan can suck: There are many job opportunities in Japan, but they are not always ideal. Generally, work-life in Japan is more stressful when compared with a typical Western country. People are to show up early and stay at work till late regardless of the type of job. The working hours are pretty harsh, with no time for family, no day-offs, no sick leaves, etc.
8. Basic stuff like opening a bank account can be hectic: To open a bank account in Japan, one must be a resident. You must also have proof of your residence, your passport, and your Japanese visa along with you. Everything is complicated, and getting all the required documents may take along.
9. Japan suffers from natural disasters: In Japan, there are regular occurrences of natural disasters, especially earthquakes. Earthquakes that occur within the borders may trigger tsunamis which can be devastating to the nation. Therefore, natural disasters are like a part of life in Japan.
10. Smoking is legal in public spaces: Japanese may not be for you unless you are ready to be a fan of smoking. Smoking is allowed in most bars, restaurants, and coffee shops. It is because so many people partake, and it has become part of the Japanese culture.