Subtitles section Play video Print subtitles Hey guys, how's it going? My name is Micaela, and first of all, HAPPY NEW YEAR! Happy 2016! This year is going to be great. So today I kinda wanted to make an updated 2016 list of ways that you can get to Japan if that is something that is on your mind for this year, or maybe even the next year, and you want to start planning, or you want to just know what your options are, or what my personal opinion about these options are? Then this is the right video for you! Congratulations, good clicking judgement! Since we're gearing up to the 2020 Olympics here in Japan, Japan has been really focused on becoming more international, more accepting towards foreigners, more friendly towards foreigners, and I think it makes it a lot easier for first timers to visit the country. NOW IS YOUR CHANCE Nowadays, there are tons of options for foreigners looking to visit Japan, whether it be for a short term or long term period. And really, what it comes down to, is the kind of experience that you are looking for. First of all, if you are under the age of 18, or still a highschool student, you really only have a few choices: If you are a highschool student, the most challenging but also rewarding experience would be that of an exchange student in a Japanese highschool. If you are currently enrolled in highschool in your own country, you may qualify for a pre-college student visa. This is actually one of the hardest things that I've ever done in my life, being a highschool student in Japan. Although I had the preconception that I was going to come to Japan, come to a Japanese highschool, and go back to Canada having made lots of Japanese friends, it turns out that when you can't speak Japanese, you can't really express yourself, and people don't get to know you, and that can be really frustrating at first. It takes a while to get used to reading Kanji, it takes a while for you to relate to the highschool experience here. The other big thing to consider is that Japanese highschool students spend a lot of their time either at afterschool club activities, or studying in cram schools, because getting into college is the biggest hurdle of a highschool student's life. So, they're very busy, and they don't really have a lot of time to ~hang out~, they don't really ~hang out~ like we do in Canada, so. I think it's a very challenging experience, but it's also the most rewarding because you put yourself in these positions where you're experiencing a new culture and you're kind of forcing yourself to both accept and grow at the same time. And I think that when you're young, that's something that's a lot easier to do, like, I'm really really glad that I was a highschool student, but if anyone were to ask me to do it all over again, right NOW, I'd be like, "nah!!". Another option would be to come to Japan on a tourist visa. Some Japanese language schools offer short term classes for people who are visiting Japan on a tourist visa, and if you're on a tourist visa, some schools offer 12 week courses, and some schools also offer four-week courses. As long as you can afford a place to stay while you're here, and the school fees of course, this is a good way to to kind of experience what it's like to live in Japan without the actual commitment of living in Japan forever. Especially if you're a highschool student, and you don't really want to do the whole exchange student thing, you could try to come over maybe on summer vacation and take a 4-week language school course while you know, just getting a feel for the daily life here, and then, when you graduate, if Japan is where you really want to be, you can kind of work towards coming back. The most expensive but also most convenient and least stressful way of seeing as much of Japan as possible in a short period of time would be to join an all-inclusive tour such as Contiki or Intrepid. I think Intrepid actually has a lot of Japanese tours, ranging from 4 days to two weeks. Although the prices are quite high they do include everything; accommodation, and food, and attractions! A lot of people are like, "ew, the tourist experience, gross!" but I think that if you wanna just get a really comfortable, safe introduction to Japan without having to think about too much or plan too much yourself, this is actually a great way to see all of the really important beautiful sights, eat a lot of the most important delicious food, and you know, get the experience! Because you're with someone who knows the country. If you REALLY don't want the tourist experience, finally, you could always just come on a tourist visa, pay for accommodation, and plan your own travels and do everything yourself. but, you know, that's totally up to you. A Working Holiday Visa is another great option for those of you who have completed high school and are under 30 years old. However, it's always kind of hard to talk about this because Americans do NOT have access to Working Holiday Visas. And it kinda sucks for them. But a lot of Canadians, Australians and Europeans visit Japan on Working Holiday Visas. And each country has it's own rules, so I can only talk about it kind of "generally". Working Holiday allows you to visit Japan for a longer time than tourist visa does, plus you also get permission to work. so you can kind of support yourself and pay your way along as you're travelling or living in Japan. People who come visit on Working Holiday usually end up on short-term contracts teaching English, or they work at farms, farmwork is actually a lot of fun! I recommend that. Finally, if you're looking for more long-term options, you've decided that You've decided that "absolutely!" you want to spend as much time in Japan as possible. You have three options: Come as a post-secondary student You can come as an employee of a company, Or you can get married.