Japan General

Basic Information of Japan for Expats

Gathered here is a collection of basic information useful to expats who currently live in Japan, or are planning to live in Japan. 

Japan is an easier and more convenient place to live in than you might think. Once you know how things work and what to do, your life in Japan will become stress-free and enjoyable. Our guides cover such things as Money, National Holidays, the My Number System, Age Restrictions, Furniture and Appliances, English TV in Japan, and more.

The 2019 Japanese Calendar in English

For foreigners living in Japan, a calendar showing Japan’s national holidays is indispensable tool for everyday life. It is however difficult to find one in English. We here at PLAZA HOMES would like to share our original calendar that we make every year displaying all the Japanese holidays in Engli…

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Money in Japan: Banknotes and Coins

Despite growth of credit card use in Japan, you will still find yourself paying by cash in many occasions in your day to day life. It's surprising to many that there are still many restaurants and stores which will not accept credit cards as a form of payment. Japanese currency is quite easy to use…

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Public Utility Prices in Japan (Electricity, Gas, Water)

Public utilities such as electricity, gas, and water supply, are basic necessities for everyday life. Here we explain easily the rate structure, payment methods, and a rough average cost per month by the number of household, to assist in gauging your budget for life in Japan. Gas and electricity me…

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Furniture for Expats in Japan – bringing, leasing or buying

When you renting a residence in Japan, typically, rental properties with long-term contracts do not come fully furnished with furniture and appliances. Here is a short guide to inform foreign expats of the different options available in Japan in when it comes to furnishing a home. The options we wil…

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Household Electronic Appliances in Japan - For Long-term Residents

When a foreigner moves long-term to Japan such as for starting a new life as an expat, you will need to use household appliances in the residence you lease. If you bring appliances from your home country, you will face a lot of cumbersome matters. Here we show below the guidance on the voltage and e…

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Age Restrictions in Japan: Drinking, Smoking, Voting & More

Age matters a lot in Japan. From the earliest school years until a person finds a job and even into retirement, a Japanese person’s age is connected strongly with their status in society. The age of 20, when a person is said to have become an adult, is commemorated in a special celebration called "S…

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Taxes in Japan: Filing Japanese Income Tax in Tokyo

Ben Franklin aptly stated: “…in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” While tax season is dreaded no matter what country you live in, for many lucky foreign residents living in Japan it’s possible that the confusion and hours or research spent in filing Japanese taxe…

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Japanese National Holiday Calendar

Like all countries, Japan has a number of unique national holidays that range from those commemorating historically significant dates to religious festivals. We have prepared a list of all of the major ones along with relevant traditions and things to be aware of for each one.  The 2019 Japanese…

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Opening a Bank Account in Japan

Opening a bank account in Japan could be difficult if you don't speak Japanese however, in this article we introduce banks which offer English services and you can also open an account online.Most Japanese banks are open from 9:00-15:00, Monday to Friday, except for national holidays and New Year’s…

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The My Number System in Japan and what it means for non-Japanese

Starting in October of 2015, every citizen in Japan received a notification by mail (by “notification card”) regarding their 12-digit Social Security and Tax Number (also called Individual Number or “My Number”). Information about this new system has been brought up frequently across various media p…

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