How to Make Japanese Friends in Japan

A lot of expats want Japanese friends. Even if you are a fluent Japanese speaker, the easiest way to make Japanese friends is by joining expat groups and attending expat events. The simple fact of the matter is that Japanese people join these groups and attend these events in hopes of meeting people from other countries. At most expat events in Japan, you can meet Japanese people – some speak fluent English, some speak none, and many are somewhere in between. For a rich and balanced social life, join several interest based groups and you’re sure to meet people that you can connect with. (read more…)

Adjusting To Raising a Family in Japan

Hands down, the biggest concern for families moving to Japan is education and childcare. If your family is bilingual, the Japanese school system is amazing and will be a good fit. For families without a member who is fluent in Japanese, there is a surprising number of options in a variety of price ranges. There are a lot of English language preschools, elementary schools, junior high schools, and high schools. In the Aichi region, there are schools that teach from a variety of educational paradigms. Some schools draw from a specific country or program of certification, and some draw from specific religious curriculums. (read more…)

Adjusting to the Transient Nature of Expatriate Friendships

Expatriates tend to have one thing in common, and that’s a bit of wanderlust. Expatriates typically like to travel and don’t mind moving. Some are searching for adventure; others are looking for their place in the world. Those who are looking for adventure tend to find the transient nature of all things exhilarating. Those who are looking for their place in the world tend to be looking for permanence. These two extreme views on life and the expat experience impact friendships because, interestingly enough, both types tend to move around a bit before settling in one place for an extensive amount of time. This can make building friendships hard. (read more…)

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