• faq

  • Life in Japan

    Tokyo and Other Areas

    Tokyo is an exciting and dynamic city of roughly 12 million people. Tokyo has it all. French restaurants, sushi bars, professional baseball, theatre, even mountains!
    Also, don’t forget about the Olympic games! They are coming soon!
    Most people find life in Tokyo to be quite convenient. Excellent public transportation, modern utilities and plenty of the foods you’re probably accustomed to in your home country.
    If you’re not into the crowded, bustling city life then historical sites such as Nikko and Kamakura are within day trip range of Tokyo. Also the hot springs of nearby Chichibu or Tochigi can be quite relaxing. Don’t forget the excellent skiing in nearby Nagano either.
    When Berkeley House Language Center teachers are not teaching they often enjoy studying Japanese, visiting fitness centers, having a beer at the local izakaya (Japanese style pub). Or even travelling to a nearby Asian country.
    You certainly will not get bored living in Tokyo!
    Mito is the a capital city of Ibaraki prefecture. From Tokyo to Mito, it takes about 1.5 hours by express train. The other offices are in small towns and people enjoy their own pace of living with lots of nature.

    Getting Established

    Getting set up in Japan can be quite expensive. Apartment rent generally runs about US$600 per month and a total of three months rent is usually (but not always) required up front. There are “guest houses” (basically one room with shared bath and showers and kitchen) available which require only a one month deposit. Cellular phone service in Japan is quite reasonable. The phone itself may cost from US$100 to500 to purchase then another US$ 50.00 per month for service (of course, this depends on the services you choose). Apartments in Japan are usually not furnished so you will need to purchase a refrigerator, pots/pans, rice cooker etc. Buying these items from your local department store can be costly. Many teachers purchase used items from Craigslist or other such local websites. There are always a number of foreigners returning to their home countries who are trying to get rid of their old appliances, furniture, bicycles etc. If you plan to bring appliances to Japan it is recommended that you make sure that they are compatible with the Japanese electrical system.


    In Tokyo and Mito, it can be very hot and humid during summer, and it is somewhat cold and dry during the winter months. In spring and fall it is usually nice and mild. It can be very rainy from about the end of May till the beginning of July.
    In Fukushima and Nagano prefecture, it can be very cold in winter. However, if you like winter sports such as sking, these places might be even better suited to you.

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