Living in Japan is great, and I believe that if you’re unhappy with your current living situation, think about relocating to Japan.
Myth and stereotype:
Japan is a high-tech wonderland- FALSE, some cities are more “advanced” than cities in the United State. But, you could still find swatting toilets and non-flushing toilets in Japan. Not everywhere are big cities, there are many small suburbs in Japan. Japan is still a cash-based society, so don’t be shocked if they a place does not have a credit card machine. Credit card is only popular in the United State and the rest of the world still rely on cash.
Sushi: No, people don’t always eat sushi, but sushi is cheap here. You could spend 15-20 dollars on sushi in Japan and pay 60-80 dollars in America for the same type of sushi. American’ sushi and Japanese’s food doesn’t do justice to Japanese’s food.
People still use flip phones here!
Cost of Living:
It’s cheaper than you think!
I like to do this conversion: 1 US Dollar = 100 Yen. They’re not even, but I find it easier that way.
You could get a studio or a 1-bedroom apartment for about 300-500 dollars outside of huge cities such as Tokyo and Kyoto. They’ll be small, like the one you see in movies, tv shows, anime, and YouTube, but you’ll have a roof over your head. Therefore, making 20k-30k a year, you could live a comfortable life since rent will only cost you $6,000 annually if your rent is $500 monthly. You could request to include your utilities into your rent. You could pay all of your bills at the convenience store. I’m fortunate to be able to afford a place with space.
You’ll shop weekly due to Japanese refrigerator are tiny and people tend to like to eat fresh food. I spend about 500-1,000 yen (5 to 10 dollars) weekly on grocery.
If you don’t want to cook, you could stop by your local convenience stores such as 7/11, FamilyMart, or Lawson and pick up meals that are already cooked for under 500 yen ($5).
Vending machines are everywhere! Drinks range from 100 yen to 150 yen and the option include teas (actual tea), coffee (hot and cold), Japanese soft drinks, and maybe coke or energy drink. Yes, this is all in the same machine.
If you have a degree, work is easy to find! Many entries level job will only require an Associate degree. With an Associate, your wage will be about 15-20 dollars an hour, depending on what you’re doing. Most common work for expatriate (Expat) is to teach English or Spanish. To take personal time off is easy, you’ll just take the time off. But beware that if when you come back, your hour will be cut. The employer still has a business to run and will have to hire new people to cover you. Therefore, you’ll be sharing your work out with that new person.
With a Bachelor and Masters, you’ll be making in the upper 80k to 150k range. You’ll get the upper range if you speak, read, and write Japanese. Most of these jobs that pay that much are in the business area that does business with foreign countries.
I’m leaving out a lot because I don’t want to blow up the forum, if you have any questions, let me know.