Six Good Reasons to Work in Japan

Busy Shibuya crossing in Japan, with people rushing to shopping, work, and school
Tokyo by Luca Sartoni // used under Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0)

If you’re reading this article, you’re probably thinking about working in Japan. But perhaps you are looking for some good reasons to work in Japan? If so, you’ve come to the right place!

A quick note to say “thank you” to Jobs in Japan for sponsoring this article!

On top of that, your timing is superb. As of writing, Japan has been opening up little by little after closing its borders due to COVID-19. With the opening of borders, this is your chance to snag a job in Japan!

Before starting, keep in mind that this was written from the perspective of an American. Depending on your frame of reference, your comparisons might be a little bit different. If so, let us know in the comments!

Also note that some benefits are guaranteed by law while some depend a lot on the company. Make sure to check your contract carefully and know your rights.

Now, without further delay, let’s take a look at some of the reasons to work in Japan.

1. Stable Employment

Overall, employment in Japan is relatively stable. This is thanks to the expectation of lifelong employment and laws that protect workers from wrongful dismissal. In addition, even for fixed term workers, laws also require 30 days of advance notice in the case their contract will not be renewed as long as certain requirements are met.

In the case you do find yourself unemployed, there is some good news! Many workers are eligible for unemployment benefits, including voluntary resignations as long as other requirements are met. You’ll also be happy to know that even with COVID-19 there were 1.23 jobs per job seeker in Tokyo (based on January 2022 data).

So this is a great time to be looking for a job through websites such as Jobs in Japan!

Make more money by MIKI Yoshihito // used under Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

2. Tons of Random Allowances

Many companies top off their workers’ wages with a bunch of random allowances.

For example, a large number of companies cover all commuting expenses.

It is also relatively common for companies to pay a monthly allowance for dependents in the 1000s to several 10,000s yen range.

Some companies might also provide an allowance for work-from-home expenses, a reimbursement of expenses related to continued learning, rewards for special achievements, and more.

One of the most interesting allowances from my company was a one-time payment of around 100,000 yen when I got married.

That certainly paid for a large part of the honeymoon!

3. Huge Amount of National Holidays

Sports Day, Mountain Day, the Emperor’s Birthday–these are just a few of the sixteen national holidays in Japan. Many companies schedule these as days off, which gives you a lot of long weekends.

Many companies also give extra days off around the Golden Week period in spring and New Year’s period in winter. So you can also look forward to longer holidays in addition to several smaller ones!

Baby toes by Joyell VanGelder // used under Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

4. Excellent Maternity Leave

If you’re looking to start a family, with its generous family leave, Japan might be a good choice.

Maternity leave itself is 14 weeks, with six weeks before birth and eight weeks after birth.

In addition to maternity leave, both mother and father are generally eligible for childcare leave up to the child’s first birthday. Childcare leave can be extended up to the child’s second birthday in extenuating circumstances, such as when there are no vacancies in childcare facilities.

Maternity leave and childcare leave are also generally paid. The amount will depend on your company’s health insurance and your salary before taking leave. However, the law guarantees a certain percentage based on the length of the leave.

5. No Tax Returns

This is a big one if your home country requires you to file your own tax returns. In Japan, the company will file your end-of-year tax adjustments for you!

Of course, if you have special circumstances, such as outside income, you may have to file an additional return.

Otherwise, enjoy not having a tax season!

6. Free Checkups

If you work in Japan, you may be surprised the first time your company gives you a notice about the mandatory yearly checkup.

The good news is that the company generally pays for this standard yearly checkup. In addition, many companies provide the checkups at the workplace, counting it as part of your hours.

Scheduling checkups on your own can be a hassle. So this free checkup might just save your life!

Your Reasons to Work in Japan

Are you looking for a job in Japan? Do you already work in Japan?

What are your reasons for working in Japan?

Let us know if I left anything out!

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