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  • Writer's pictureBen M

Part-time job options

One thing we are always asked by new students is, "when can I get a part-time job?"

Image courtesy of Co-Media
British student working in coffee shop

This can be a difficult question to explain to students as it solely depends on the student's Japanese level.

Finding a job in Japan is not quite as straightforward as other countries. Relying on English or another foreign language is not beneficial and offers very limited options.

The level of Japanese you know and can effectively use will decide what kind of job options you have. While our staff can send you links and information to part-time work opportunities, the application and interview will need to be managed by the student directly.

An example from my experience would be based on Japanese levels and students I have managed and helped to find work.

I will use two very different students but obviously change their names.

Student 1 (Non self-studying)

Mark from the United Kingdom came to us in January 2020.

By April he was asking to help him find a part-time job. Because he was not really dedicated to studying outside of school he often spent his time just having fun and had not really progressed.

His Japanese level by July was very basic to primarily greetings and very basic short sentences.

He could not pass an interview until July and got a job making lunch boxes for ¥980 per hour in a hot factory.

By graduation in March 2021 he was working in Sukiya (a kind of sukiyaki fast food restaurant) and earning ¥1,020 per hour.

Student 2 (Self-studying)

Simon from Spain also came to us in January 2020.

Simon asked me in March to help him find a part-time job. He was studying for a couple hours every evening and after 3 months he was able to hold a conversation very well.

He just passed the end of semester test to begin studying N4 level in April.

He got a job in mid April in a burger restaurant taking orders for ¥1,100 per hour.

By graduation in March 2021 he was working in a phone shop in Shibuya earning ¥1,550 per hour selling phones and data plans.

As you can see the types of jobs, salary and career level change dramatically based on the amount of Japanese known. Students who do not study very often and cannot really communicate in Japanese take a long time to get a minimum wage job as opposed to students that dedicate themselves to their studies.

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