Chopsticks have been around for centuries, with the first documented use in China, around 1200 B.C. Originally used to reach into boiling pots of water or oil, they weren’t used for actual eating until around 400 A.D., and they were not used outside of China until around 6-700 A.D., by which time they had spread across Asia. Japan initially used chopsticks within their Shinto rituals, for which they were made of bamboo and joined at the top. With such importance in Japanese culture, you might feel a lot of pressure to make sure you get it right, so we’re going to break down the do’s and don’ts of chopstick use, and how you should use them to eat three of Japan’s favorite meals with them.
A direct flight from the continental US to Japan can take between 10 to 15 hours. The variety is due to many factors like geography and weather. To determine the specific flight time, find your specific route on the list. Also, take the outside variables into account that may increase the time of your trip.
There are a number of different roads you can take towards working in Japan – more than ever with recent government efforts to increase the foreign workforce. It is worth taking some time to research and consider the various options available to you as a potential foreign worker in Japan – including visa options and opportunities across popular sectors.
With so many impressive options, finding the right hotel in Shinjuku means narrowing down what you want. Whether it’s luxury, a low price or traditional Japanese lodging, an incredible hospitality experience is waiting for you. These eight hotels specifically have something to offer anyone staying in the area.
For those who are used to driving a few blocks to Walmart anytime they need anything, day or night, shopping in a foreign country can be a shock. Luckily, Walmart actually exists in Japan, if by another name: Seiyu. Plus, many other chains of hypermarkets, supermarkets and department stores give you plenty of options. In the end, getting your shopping done in Japan is as easy and convenient, if not more so, than back home.
Property purchase in any country is a long and arduous process – from saving your down payment, to working out what kind of house you actually want, to the bidding wars, to the hidden legal fees, to the heartbreak of a sale falling through – it’s hard not to emerge on the other side with mild PTSD. Throw in the challenge of a new country with different laws and purchasing culture, and you’ve pretty much got a recipe for a migraine. Don’t let that put you off buying in Japan though – approach the process with logic, knowledge, and a healthy amount of emotional detachment and you will secure your happy ending.
Whether you just want to spend a year or two in the country or Japan is your dream home, there are numerous paths you can take to live there. Of course, all of these are not without their various obstacles and legal requirements. However, with enough knowledge and preparation beforehand, you can navigate these processes and make the most out of your time in Japan.
Like most aspects of life in Japan, the school system is equal parts strictly regimented and delightfully unique. It teaches students the values of Japanese society in a very practical way from a young age, preserving the core culture that makes Japan what it is in a seamless manner. That’s not to say that the Japanese school system doesn’t have its critics – many argue that it puts too much pressure on young shoulders, and the consequences of this can be serious.
While Wi-Fi is becoming increasingly popular throughout Japan, you can’t always guarantee that you’ll be able to find somewhere that has it, particularly outside of the cities. Whether you just can’t live without your social media feed, you want to give people serious FOMO about your trip, or, like me, you love google maps and the power it gives you to explore new places, then you’ll probably want to consider your internet options for your next trip to Japan. The great news is you have plenty of them.
With the birth of online shopping, you might assume that there’s nothing you can’t just order online, but Japan still has many cool things that you can’t really buy unless you go there. Gift-giving is a big deal in Japan, so they’ve got an endless number of cute things that make perfect souvenirs. Whether it’s gadgets, games, gifts, ornaments, or just a real reminder of your trip, there are plenty of unique things you can get in Japan and Japan only. The best news is we’re not talking about cheap, kitschy things like fridge magnets either, but rather well-made, beautiful items that will make great gifts for others or yourself (and some things you can only get and enjoy while you’re there).