Japan For Digital Nomads in 2021 – that will be the topic of today’s article.
Before introducing this article, if you are interested in our core services which are expat financial, insurance and mortgages, you can contact me here.
The best time to consider your financial situation is when you are moving to a new country.
As we’d discussed earlier on this platform, Japan is home to beautiful countryside, ancient temples, and home to the world’s freshest food. In fact, it’s even the fourth-largest island country in the world, surrounded by many smaller inhabited islands. Besides, it’s a unique place with lots of technology.
Tokyo, the capital city of the country, is the futuristic and energetic capital of Japan. With a growing population of about 9 million and around 90,000 restaurants, Tokyo is the place to be for the curious digital nomad. This city became the country’s capital in 1868, after being moved from the city of Kyoto.
The modern and built-up skyline of Tokyo attracts many expats from all over the world. Not only that, but it gives digital nomads an experience like no other with its fusion of old and new. Besides, the Japanese city is really fantastic for anyone looking to experience something new as there’s something intriguing in every corner of the country.
Have you been planning to diversify your portfolio and become a digital nomad? Or does it seem difficult whenever you’re making a move to the right destination? Worry less, as this is the right platform to lead you through. You don’t have to surf the internet for the right information anymore as we’ve got you covered.
In this article, we have compiled the 7 reasons why Japan is among the best countries suitable for the digital nomad in 2021. Aside from this fact, you’ll understand the best city that’s good enough for expatriates to reside in if they’re planning for a digital nomad lifestyle. Does that sound interesting? Read further!
Why Japan is Suitable for Digital Nomad
Since Japan is a wonderland and there’s nothing that this mystical archipelago doesn’t do well, living as a digital nomad seems to be your best decision ever. You can begin the day with a walk to your local Shinto shrine, head to a café, and then explore the city. Before we proceed, let’s take a look at the benefits.
Rich and Interesting Japanese Culture
For a digital nomad, we can tell you that living in Japan isn’t always easy, and it’s far from perfect. If you’re visiting the country for the first time as a digital nomad, it can be difficult at times, and you’ll need to prepare for some obstacles. However, learning the Japanese language, embracing their cultural heritage, and knowing the customs, and meeting locals will help you immerse yourself in the community.
Living a More Simplified Lifestyle
Traveling to new cities and countries means you’ll be limited in what you can bring along to your new location. Many digital nomads could find it difficult to live in other countries. But in Japan, you’ll live a more simplified lifestyle. In fact, you’ll likely feel more freedom without the weight of your everyday belongings.
Super Clean and Ultra Safe Nation
What’s noteworthy about Japan is that the country is super safe and clean. Wherever your feet guide you, don’t be surprised to be impressed with how clean and well-organized the cities are. In fact, a lot of expats said they never saw cockroaches or rats on the street.
And this is because; keeping the environment clean in Japan starts from the basics, which is sorting all trash from non-combustible and plastic materials to canned goods and household goods. Moreover, houses, and buildings, both in public and private places, are clean and well-maintained as well.
Great Educational System
While you’re working in this country as a digital nomad, you also have the opportunity to explore around the excellent educational system in the country. As of today, Japan is well known for providing a world-class education to all students, whether the locals attend free public school or a private school.
Again, Japanese students are held to high standards of excellence as they complete their education. Moreover, US News and World Report, in recent years, ranked the country’s school system among the best in the world. This means there are great opportunities for a digital nomad to learn multiple languages in Japanese schools, and the universities in the country are highly esteemed.
Healthcare System in Japan
While living in this country as a digital nomad, you don’t need to worry about your health. This is because; Japan is very affordable, with public healthcare system available for both expats and the locals. Meanwhile, everybody is protected, and the out-of-pocket expenses are capped to keep the cost of healthcare manageable in the country. Whereas, the nation is still making a concerted effort to keep healthcare costs under check, and they rarely create problems for digital nomads in the country.
Excellent Shopping Experience
While you’re enjoying your stay as an expat in this beautiful country, you can enjoy an excellent shopping experience as well. Supermarkets in Japan are world-famous for being convenient, well structured, and good. Here, you can buy almost everything you think of. Moreover, they’re always clean, safe, and well-staffed. This way, you may not even recognize a convenience store in Japan when compared to your own.
Healthy and Scrumptious Cuisine
Japanese restaurants are incredibly notable in the world. Their restaurants were given more Michelin stars than those in Paris. But as research disclosed, Japanese cuisine has more to say than sushi, and this is why they are simply termed as healthy and scrumptious cuisine. With that being said, you can even see an array of fresh seafood and world-class dishes, including melt-in-your-mouth Kobe beef and more.
Best Places to Live as a Digital Nomad
We can tell you that Japan is quite bigger than you might think! All the way from frozen Hokkaido in the north to subtropical Okinawa in the south, there are many places to reside if you’re working as a digital nomad in Japan. Without further ado, let’s quickly describe some of the best places to live in the country.
1. Tokyo for Digital Nomad
Since Tokyo is the iconic capital of the country, it has a lot to offer digital nomads. Tokyo is absolutely huge, and it’s even one of the biggest metropolises in the world, with a population that rockets well above 13 million people. If you want to enjoy your life as a digital nomad in the country, this is the right place to visit. In fact, Tokyo itself is made up of many different cities as there is a lot to explore.
2. Osaka for Digital Nomad
Well, if you don’t know Osaka, it’s high time you understand that it’s the food capital of Japan. This centrally located city is 500 kilometers west of Tokyo, and it is where to come if you like eating and drinking. In this city, you can get to grips with Osaka’s soul food, such as okonomiyaki and others.
In spite of that, Osaka also happens to be another sprawling city complete with malls, an endless underground shopping experience, and a buzzing nightlife. However, this place is usually considered cheaper than Tokyo, the capital city of the country.
3. Kyoto for digital Nomad
This is another place to consider as an expat. And of course, it’s the old imperial city of Japan where you can experience a quite traditional backstreet and have world heritage, UNESCO status, and centuries-old temples on your doorstep. Aside from what we’ve mentioned, there are numerous fun things to do in Kyoto that’d keep you busy and lively as a digital nomad.
And while the city sounds perfect, the downsides of Kyoto are the tourists, which are mightily plentiful during the high season. Notwithstanding, you’ll enjoy your life but know that accommodation is rather expensive in the city.
4. Kobe for Digital Nomad
Kobe is famous for beef and is known as the sixth-largest city in the country. Also, it’s one of the most multicultural cities in Japan to be opened to foreigners. As a result, there’s plenty of foreign food to enjoy in this city and plenty of communities of westerners to socialize with. Meanwhile, there’s a historical area here with many Western residences, as well as a rather large Chinatown to explore.
5. Fukuoka for Digital Nomad
This is known as Japan’s burgeoning start-up city. It’s an excellent option for digital nomads who like life by the sea. Here, you’ll find the third Japanese home island known as Kyushu. Fukuoka, since its inception, boasts sandy beaches, a vibrant tech scene, funky malls, and life here is so good.
Fukuoka has also been ranked as one of the most liveable cities in the world, helped by its mild winters and balmy summers. Meanwhile, you can also explore the neighborhood through the ferry connection available to South Korea and others.
6. Countryside for Digital Nomad
Sometimes, living in Japan as a digital nomad isn’t about moving to the cities. If you really want a taste of the authentic, everyday lives of Japanese people, the countryside is just the perfect place. Even some cities in Japan are often just made up of small towns and villages. So, try and explore the countryside.
On the flip side, life as a digital nomad in this place is ruled by nature and lack of amenities. This means you might be working and enjoying the uniqueness of nature while meeting friendly and hardworking people all around. And this is definitely a good option if you want to enjoy a simpler lifestyle.
7. Smaller Cities
Aside from the big cities, there are dozens of smaller cities scatted across the islands. Here, you can enjoy your lifestyle as a digital nomad without disturbance from third parties or any uniform officers. Some of the smaller cities range from Matsue on the Sea of Japan, Kochi on the south coast of Shikoku, and the Nagoya, which is pretty big compared to other smaller cities.
Types of Accommodations Available for Digital Nomads
If you’re planning to stay in this country for an extended period of time, you need to find a home. In Japan, there are numerous accommodation options but just keep in mind that most won’t offer ample living space. In no much talk, we have compiled the types of accommodation available for expat. Check it out now!
● Hostels for Digital Nomads
Don’t be surprised to see the hostel as number one in Japan. In fact, their hostels are amazing, and they’re well geared up for digital nomads living in the country. In addition, these hostels usually come with a strong Wi-Fi connection and tables for people to work at. That being said, living long term in such a hostel could get pricey even in a normal setting that has no amenities.
● Hotels for Digital Nomads
Well, if you’re planning to stay in this country as a digital nomad, it’s quite essential to know the price of the hotel. Of course, a good option for when you first arrive in the country is to search for the nearest hotels. However, rooms are pretty compact, and the rates get high, depending on what you want.
On the other hand, hotels are cheaper in towns that aren’t tourist hotspots but aren’t the best choice for long-term living in the country. So, if you want to stay in the hotel, we advise you to reside there for a short period of time in order not to consume your hard-earned money or go against your budget.
● Airbnb for Digital Nomads
In recent years, Airbnb used to be a godsend for a digital nomad individual living in japan. This was unregulated and cheap, with a myriad of options all over the country, even in the most off-the-beaten-track locations.
But, since the Japanese government made it more difficult for people to become Airbnb hosts in 201, there are now fewer Airbnbs to choose from in the country. Meanwhile, they’re still a solid option for digital nomads, and a bargain can be found if truly you want to live in Airbnb.
● Shared House for Digital Nomad
If you’re looking to base yourself in a city for a couple of months as a digital nomad, living in Japan can’t get much easier or cheaper than staying in a shared apartment or house. These shared houses consist of your furnished room with communal facilities. Not only that but Wi-Fi and bills are usually included in the price. Even though the location might not be in the middle of the city, the houses are usually near a train station and shops.
● Renting a House
We can confidently tell you that this is the best way to enjoy your lifestyle as a digital nomad in Japan. Renting your own apartment gives you enough time to do whatever you like in your space without disturbance from any uniform men or officers. Even in Tokyo, the rents are surprisingly affordable. On the other hand, some basic Japanese language knowledge would be helpful in this instance.
Basic Amenities Digital Nomad Enjoy in Japan
Being utterly chock-a-bloc with amenities makes a living in Japan as a digital nomad hassle-free. There are libraries everywhere, parks on every corner, a crazy amount of convenience stores, hospitals, video game arcades, doctor’s surgeries, and post offices in every town. Now, see the basic amenities below.
Japan’s railway network is world-famous, and there’s a reason for that – and this is because; it’s amazing! Here, you can get pretty much anywhere because of the train network available in the country. Also, many metros are fairly inexpensive and much cheaper than the U.S. or London.
Furthermore, long-distance buses are reasonably cheap compared to shinkansen and can really help to stick to your proposed budget. However, you’ll find taxes in cities, but not precisely expensive as you might have suggested.
Wi-Fi and Sim Cards Option
For all Japan’s technological advancement, getting online is one of the easiest things in the country. While big train stations, malls, and convenience stores have Wi-Fi, cafes don’t always have, and if they do, they might not have a power socket. So, for a digital nomad living in the country, finding the right chain café is going to be the key to getting some work done.
Must-Have Apps in Japan
Apps make a living in Japan so much easier for the digital nomad. That’s not to say that you can’t live without them, but simple things like using a washing machine can be a minefield if you can’t read Japanese. Thankfully, there’s good old Google Translate that can help you through while using some features.
Best Cafes and Coworking Spaces in Japan
Paper Back Café (Digital Nomad)
Since you’re coming to this country for digital nomad work, an ideal place to go is the paperback café. It is adorably located in a jointly shared bookshop named Books Tokyodo, and you’ll have nothing but peace and a quiet environment when working here. Free Wi-Fi is available here with multiple outlets to charge your devices and all the ingredients you need for a productive day of work as a digital nomad.
Blink Community (Digital Nomad)
Blink community is another place to take into consideration if you’re planning to work as a digital nomad in Japan. It’s a sleek, modern coworking space, which offers a variety of reasonable working environments to digital nomads. That being said, it’s a place aimed towards building a foreigner-friendly working atmosphere. Therefore, it’s a great place for any remote workers or travelers in the country.
Working Outdoors in Japan
If staying connected online is not a necessity to finishing your work, parks should be towards the top end. So, if you need to stay connected, you can find a portable Wi-Fi device that you can rent out or buy during the duration of your stay in such an area or community. Meanwhile, you’ll be blessed with sunny days or beautiful cherry blossom trees as your backdrop during the summer and spring seasons.
Interesting Things to Do As a Digital Nomad
Nowadays, more and more people are experimenting with a different rhythm of life. Thanks to the advancement of technology and the better opportunities that exist today compared to a few decades ago. More so, a digital nomad lifestyle is by no means an easy one! Take a look at the things to do.
Exploring Tokyo Streets
The capital of Japan, Tokyo, is one place to visit because of its overwhelmingly huge metropolis. Before visiting this area, it’s crucial that you turn to a handy Tokyo Guide, as this will give you a better understanding of what living in Tokyo entails. Meanwhile, you can visit an actual robot restaurant, government buildings or take a walk around the bustling streets.
Harajuku Unique Fashion
If you’re interested in a unique fashion, you must head to Harajuku to explore the fashion Jargon in Japan. Not only are there numerous boutiques and shops all over the place, but chances are you’re going to spot some interesting fashion creations if you just take a walk around and keep your eyes open.
Exploring the Snowy Mountains
Japan is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to snowy landscapes and several winter activities. So while living in this country as a digital nomad expat, you can explore some of your favorite options, including the popular Hakuba and Niseko skiing resort, or even go for a picturesque stay in Furano.
Visiting the Best Cafes
Japan is famous for always bringing the unexpected. This way, expect to see some extraordinary cafes in the country. While cats cafes are still immensely popular, there are other animal cafes such as owls and hedgehog cafes, but the list is more and doesn’t end there. So, don’t be shocked when you hear animal names as cafes in Japan.
Explore Japanese Museum
No, what country you’re visiting, one of the best ways to enjoy the cultural history and heritage is to visit the museum. Even if you’re not so big on museums, everyone can find something that will interest them. So, if you’re in Japan and you wish to know more about the history, culture, and art, you must not miss out on visiting the popular studio Ghibli Museum.
If you’re considering working remotely in Japan, then you should read the guide above carefully. Japan is a tech-savvy nation, and it will help you make the most of your nomadic life abroad. So, what are you waiting for? Go get your ticket, and prepare ahead to enjoy a fantastic relocation experience in Japan.