If you’re considering moving to Japan to teach English, you’re about to embark on a huge adventure. You’ll experience a culture that’s unlike anything you’ve ever experienced and also make good money in the process. It may be a little scary because you don’t know what to expect, but this is a path that’s been trodden by many before you, so don’t worry. There are just a few things to keep in mind.
No Experience Necessary!
What do you need to get a job teaching English in Japan? The ads always tell you that you don’t need any experience whatsoever; they’ll hire anyone. Although it’s not always the case 100% of the time, you generally need a college degree. It doesn’t matter what your major is, but you need a degree in something.
If you don’t have a college degree, you’ll find it tough to get visa sponsorship. Employers view high school graduates as inexperienced and likely to flake and leave. Legally, you need a college degree in order to get a proper work visa. If you don’t have one, shady employers may take advantage of you.
Heading off to Job Hunt
If you don’t get a job before you go over, should you just head there looking? Of course, it’s much easier to land a job when you’re physically in Japan. he tricky part is getting your visa sorted. With a standard tourist visa, you can stay in the country for 90 days but you can’t work. In order to work, you need to find a company that will sponsor your work visa. his means that you need to bring enough cash to live as long as it takes you to get sponsorship.
While going there yourself offers many more possibilities, it’s also risky. You may find yourself using your return ticket home and being thousands of dollars poorer.
What English Schools Are Looking For
If it doesn’t matter what you studied and you don’t need any teaching experience, what are English schools looking for? They’re obviously not looking for teaching skill. What they’re looking for is enthusiasm and a willingness to learn. English schools look for people who are sociable and friendly. They’ll hire you not based on your past experience or present skills, but on your future potential. Luckily, the demand for English teachers is so high that it’s not hard at all to land a teaching job as long as you’ve got the right attitude.
Adjusting to Life in Japan
The toughest part won’t be getting a job; it’ll be getting adjusted to life in Japan. It’s good to surround yourself with Western friends who are easy to relate to, but you should also participate in Japanese life as much as possible. Enjoy your hobbies with the natives and make an effort to learn the language. Whether you stay for one year or a lifetime, getting involved in life in Japan will make a huge difference.
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