Some things to watch out for if you plan on studying abroad in Japan.
Now, I come from a tiny town that revolves around its university, so most of these comparisons are biased towards my point of view.
- is rather difficult to navigate. If you’re not used to the train system, it takes a while to understand.
- has A LOT of paperwork. There’s so much to do once you arrive, it’s not even funny.
- doesn’t provide paper towels in public bathrooms. Toilet paper, yes, but nothing to wipe your hands on.
- has like a sink connected to the toilet. When you flush, it dispenses [clean] water to wash hands with.
- has a separate toilet and bathroom. So it’s kind of inconvenient in my opinion.
- is not survivable (in Tokyo especially) at $100 a month. Or even $100 a week.
- sells things expensive. As in groceries. Veggies, fruits, meats – everything not cheap. Surprisingly fish is expensive, too.
- portions are as tiny as you thought. Mostly. A super tiny like pill bottle size of Minute Maid was ¥130.
- is super crowded. Depending on the times you take the train, it can get bad.
- requires a lot of walking. You need strong legs. Good exercise, though.
- is expensive in general. Transportation omg. You need trains but they add up.
- has mosquitoes that bite. Not that it hurts or anything, but you can’t see these mosquitoes so suddenly you end up with a ton of itchy spots and don’t know where they came from.
- bread if expensive. 6 pieces for $0.65 at the lowest and those 6 pieces are about like, maybe less than half a loaf back home.
- People don’t wear tanks often. They are very conservative, so spaghetti straps are absolutely out. Also, shorts are not that short and sunglasses make you look like a foreigner.
- It gets dark super early – around 5 or 6 pm
Places especially crowded: Shibuya, Shinjuku, Ikebukuro (all the like iconic places are SUPER crowded and hard to navigate. Easy to get lost in, too.)
- Near closing time, grocery stores have half off of select products.
- ¥100 shops which are much better and sell more useful things than our $1 shops. Got my soy sauce and canola oil from there.
- Convenient stores has ¥100 onigiri which serves well as lunch.
- You can take a train everywhere.
- Super fashionable. They put us to shame. Even like New York and maybe on par with LA, but the styles are different.
- Good bubble tea. Pearl Lady is good.
- Amazing desserts and coffee shops.
- Eating out can be cheaper than eating out in the States.
This can be taken as a positive or negative, but Japan also sells clothes in advance of a season. So it’s tough to find summer clothes in summer, for example.
I don’t understand how girls wear high heels like all the time. Also 80s style circle skirts are ‘in’ here. High waisted pants/jeans and, surprisingly, bold print pants are, too. Chiffon blouses and plain, one color tops are also popular. Usually girls wear high heels or flat, sneaker-like canvas shoes with ankle socks (like the lace tipped ones). Definitely not soffes (which I love) or athletic/free t-shirts.
Oh, and you know that tall feeling that foreigners have when they get to Japan? It didn’t last me too long, because some of the girls here are actually pretty tall or my height (although some of it can be contributed to high heels). Sometimes I do feel tall, though. Some of the guys here are shorter than me…and some girls are like a head shorter…