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Going to Japan
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26 / M / Close by real Clo...
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Posted 2/27/07
I hope to go to japan at some point in life hope its soon
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F / I wonder...
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Posted 2/27/07
i wanna go, but i'll need loads of money.
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28 / M / Seattle ,WA
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Posted 3/19/07
im going after the skool year is over
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27 / M / ......
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Posted 3/19/07
DO NOT DO NOT FORGOT YOUR................anti asian repellant


See they didnt and look how happy they are...no asians hehehe

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28 / M / Spencer,Iowa 51301
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Posted 3/19/07
Music such as an mp3 player or CD player, Hand held gaming system such as game boy or PSP, Clothes, Money, a national phone card incase you need to call for some reason. *nods*
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28 / F / ca
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Posted 3/19/07
so lucky ^^ I wanna go >.<

carry money, mp3,and be very openminded!! oh and don't go alone!!

good luck in your trip! -n_n-
Posted 3/19/07
me and my friend are going there when we finish school..what a coincidence, i'm going on a trip around europe with my mom in may...cheap tickets in may.
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24 / F / does it really ma...
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Posted 3/19/07
wow lucky! one year? i only went there for 2 weeks....
you might need a phone (3G) and money! cos they like using phones a lot and bring lots of money...me and my friends went and they took like 30,000yen and they nearly spent it all...but then again, they were too excited cos they were in japan and they are girls...lol xD
and take that adapter thing where you can charge stuff...take a camera, umbrella.....yea...
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34 / M / 中国
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Posted 3/19/07
I lived in japan for 3 months (glorified business trip really) and here is what I would recommend (assuming you don't understand japanese):

random advice:

most japanese speak some english (especially the young people), though they won't actually say any of it around you since they're embaressed to speak it, but if you speak clearly and slowly and use simeple words they can usually understand you. i pretty much got around with "hai, no, arigato," trying to say anything else in japanese usually just confuses or freaks them out.

there is very little difference in appearance between a 14 and 24 (sometimes even 34 for that matter) year old girl over there. be very carefull with who you hit on. they are very hard on westerners who break the law. try to stick with clubs and stuff like, don't hit on girls in shopping centers since they're more likely to have minors.

if you hear anyone say "gaijin" around you that means they're talking about you. if you hear anyone say "baka gaijin" around you, that means idiot foreigner and you're doing something really stupid. overall, you can get away with doing really stupid stuff since you can play off being a foreinger, as well as ignoring some local customs. like bowing for example - nobody is going to be offended if you don't bow since you're (i assume) obviously not from around there. just smile and be polite.

they don't tip at all - its very rude to tip since it's insulting the place they work at. you'll want to because its the best service you'll ever get. ironic isn't it?

many restaurants have illustrated menus. unless they have an english menu, stick with these restaurants. just point and not at the item you want. pointing and nodding is the international language. if they have an english menu, they'll usually bring it out to you, but if they don't just point and say "eigo" (english) in an inquisitve manner and they may bring you one if they have it.

take pictures of normal stuff... i only took pictures of touristy things and kind of regret it now.

Don't buy anime DVDs and keep the manga to a minimum. The DVDs are expensive and only work on region 2 players, and the vast majority don't have subtitles. It's ok to buy manga because it's so cheap, but buy sparingly. Artbooks and magazines are much more interesting. Magazines like Gothic Lolita and some of the bigger gaming and anime magazines are still enjoyable if you can't read them.

Anime merchandise I'd reccomend is gashapon figures since they're everywhere and very cheap. Gundam models are fun as well - cheap and plentiful. Most everything else is very expensive and can be acquired online just as easy. But since your there for a year, well, you don't have to be as picky as I was. actually if your from england, then you use region 2 and thats not a huge issue.

Spend time going to restaurants and experiencing the culture. I'd rather blow a bunch of money at a good sushi place than buy a bunch of anime in japan since I can get the anime stuff online, but only the sushi there.

ARCADES. japanese arcades are godly. go when school lets out... it does the soul well to see a myriad of japanese school girls playing DDR. They can be expensive, but not too bad.

What to bring:

power converters unless you plan on buying all new appliances or are going to be somewhere with your home power (like a military base). not just adapters (which you'll need too), but converters as well.

medicine related stuff, unless you want to decipher what they have over there. do you know the difference between aspirin and laxative in japanese?

bring lots of clothes and shoes since most of what they sell either won't fit or you won't want to wear (unless you're really small...)

keep track of your spending to a degree since they're going to ask you about it when you leave. it doesn't have to be down to the yennie (that gaijin slang for 1 yen), but have a rough idea.

condoms since they may not come in gaijin size over there (STDs exist in asia as well sadly)

if you're doing JET, then pack carefully. if it's military related (your in england so i suspect not) then you have a lot more leeway since the PX/BX will have you covered.

I may toss on some more if I think of it, hope this isn't an information overload - oh, have fun too
Posted 3/20/07
Books I've read on this very subject:
Jarrell Seiff's "A Practical Guide to Living in Japan" = Extremely helpful and detailed. Maybe too detailed, because it even includes pictures of what an ATM menu might look like. Directed towards anyone staying there for a while.

Celeste Heiter's "Ganbatte Means Go For It!" = Quick read, nice guide to evaluate if you are mentally prepared also. Directed towards english teachers

Jennifer Phillip's "In the Know in Japan" = Good for someone who isn't interested in details and just wants the direct, relavent points. Also comes with a neat lil CD of phrases. This book is designed for buisnessmen.

Interwebs:

http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e625.html = a good site with many well-hidden gems
http://www.conbinibento.com/category/japan-society/ = a shameless gaijin blog but a good one.
http://www.redbrick.dcu.ie/~melmoth/japan/ = a strange and occasionally wrong but always interesting attempt at a cultural refresher course.
http://www.csse.monash.edu.au/~jwb/japanese.html = Who is Jim Breen? A guy with a website who likes Japan, too.

Since you are leaving in May, you probably aren't going there for school. And if you aren't going for school, you are going to have to work. Try to make sure to follow your visa limits because you can get deported for the wrong kind of employment. Don't expect glamor.
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23 / F / singapore
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Posted 3/20/07
ohhmy.. you guys are lucky. can go japan. i want to go there too!!! the whole place sounds so cool ^^ i wanna go disneyland.. hot guys there yeahh xD
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36 / F / Undisclosed Location
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Posted 8/9/08
Old personal thread.

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