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.

Japanese Addresses: How to Read, Write, Say & Understand Them

Japan’s numbering system can be quite difficult for those from Western countries, where streets are clearly labeled with names or numbers. While Japan does have names for streets, they are never used in addresses (except for some occasions in Kyoto). Keep reading to learn everything you need to kno…

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Consumption Tax Reward Point Program for Cashless Payments

What is the Japanese government’s Reward Point Program for Cashless Payments? This promotion started on the 1st of October 2019 and will continue until the 30th of July 2020. If you make purchases using a cashless payment method, such as electronic money or credit cards, you will receive 2% or 5…

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E-Money: Prepaid Cards, Debit Cards, and Mobile Payment Methods in Japan

While Japan is still considered a cash-based country, the Japanese government has set a goal of increasing its cashless payment usage rate to 40% by the year 2025. According to the report from Nomura Research Institute, the cashless payment usage rate was 20% in 2016 in Japan (for example, UK was 6…

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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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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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Japan’s Residency Management System for Foreign Nationals

If you're moving to Japan, one thing you definitely need to be aware of is what's called the "Residency Management System". This is what the Immigration Bureau of Japan calls their system for tracking the residency of foreigners in Japan. This system started on July 9th of 2012 and introduced some c…

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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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Japan's National Pension System

What Is the Japan National Pension System and How Does It Work? While Japan offers many protections for working residents, often times the rules are confusing and circular; and with much of the paperwork in complex Japanese, it can be difficult for expats to understand. Whether deducted from you…

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Japanese Streaming, Cable and More: Get English TV in Japan

Whether you’re craving nostalgic British dramas, your favorite American talk shows, or Japanese programming in English, look no further than these 9 ways to access English TV in Japan through Japanese streaming, satellite, and cable services. TV Streaming Services in Japan In the last few years,…

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