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Can I live alone in Japan at 17 2020/1/29 23:13
I wanted to move to Japan as a student starting next school year, I will be 17 then. Would I be able to live alone, my parents could help rent out an apartment and get the visa.
by Danil (guest)  

Re: Can I live alone in Japan at 17 2020/1/30 09:35
17 will be a minor, so you might find some difficulties.
And when you say gschool,h I donft know if you mean senior high school or college; have you found one that accepts you?
by ....... (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Can I live alone in Japan at 17 2020/1/30 10:39
Your parents are not getting the visa, that is the school you are applying for.
Your parents can be a guarantee. But as mentioned since you are minor you can have some challenges on the way. Renting a apartment would almost impossible since you are minor and your parents are not in Japan, so you need to ask someone who is living in Japan. It would be better to have a school dormitory.

My question is did you do research or just think you can go.
It is a process which you need to understand well.
by justmyday rate this post as useful

Re: Can I live alone in Japan at 17 2020/1/30 10:57
Hello. Did you do any research about this? I'm not sure if you mean to apply to high school or college in Japan. Having parents who can fund you is one thing, but if you go to Japan, you can't just hop on the plane and expect Japan to just give you a visa to study. You need to go through a process to apply for the visa and to get accepted to a school.

In regards to staying in Japan, you also need to be able to rent a place to stay, so an apartment would be difficult unless you were staying with someone who already had a place or dormitory.

Try to check the guidelines of where you are applying online and see if they can give you advice.
by Motti15 rate this post as useful

Re: Can I live alone in Japan at 17 2020/1/30 11:58
My knowledge is a few years old so others will fix up my errors if I'm wrong.

If you come to Japan - you have to be here for a reason. What type of school are you going to attend? There are two main options - local and international schools. To be truthful going to a local school at 17 years old without excellent WRITTEN Japanese will not be fair on your fellow students and teachers. Studying for university entrance exams is a lot of the focus and if you can't read International schools are expensive and are there for people who most of the time will not stay in Japan long term.

Onto the visa - you will probably need a parent OR guardian to look after you at least from a legal perspective. Parents living in another country (specifically who are not Japanese) are not acceptable.

If you speak and write fluent Japanese, then potentially another forum will be better than here.

Note that I used to teach in international schools in Japan for 3 years.
by mfedley rate this post as useful

Re: Can I live alone in Japan at 17 2020/1/30 16:32
I wanted to move to Japan as a student
Let's start with the basics - WHY? What are you going to study? (high school remember)
You thought it would be "cool", fun, interesting? Have you ever lived away from home before? Ever been to Japan before? Do you know what it takes, or are you hoping somehow all that stuff will happen by magic? 17 is pretty young and most people making the move into the adult world of responsibilities quickly realise how great they had it at home - even if they are staying in their home country. (I was young for my school cohort, I left home at 17 to a university hostel, had an apartment at 18, married at 19, and finished my first degree at 20, but I was not typical of my peers.)
Or were you thinking you would stay with some host family that would do all those adult things for you.
And, even if you were not a minor, coming to Japan to live (student or otherwise), you might be able to survive only with English, but at a school that expects you to be able to speak/read/write Japanese without those skills, you are going to sink, not swim. (I manage here in Tokyo, but I employ bi-lingual people, advisors/professionals, and I have a rudimentary understanding of the procedures and requirements - I read better than I can speak.)
Or is this some kind of "gap" year that you waste in Japan and then go home and get on with your real schooling.
If this sounds harsh - wait until Japan Immigration start looking at your application to live here - they will be more brutal/clinical.

One other thing, living alone is just that. It can be quite lonely not knowing anyone or being able to talk to people. Yes there are English speaking people around (support groups), but you might not have any actual friends here. If your personality can take the isolation (surrounded by millions), then living alone might suit.
by JapanCustomTours rate this post as useful

Re: Can I live alone in Japan at 17 2020/1/31 17:57
Yes I did some research on it and I found that I would most likely have to stay at a dormitory, I was asking to see if it would be possible to stay at an apartment alone but I couldn't find any info on that on the internet so I decided to ask on here. I had a few reasons for moving to Japan.
1) I have to move out to elsewhere because my family is in a tough spot where we would need to move back to my home country but there are no international school curriculums such as IB, hence the best decision would be going to a boarding school.
2) I visited Japan and absolutely loved it, so I thought this will also be a good opportunity to learn about the country and culture.
3) Its a more affordable option than many other countries.
I realise I probably should've initially specified this but it's fine. Regardless of where I go, I will end up having to move somewhere for the start of the new school year so I thought Japan would be a good place to go, I obviously did research on other countries but they end up being too expensive or just a worse option in general (for me at least) but I do have back up plans.
by Danil (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Can I live alone in Japan at 17 2020/1/31 18:31
Can you clarify if you plan to go to a Japanese school or an international school?
If Japanese school as PPs said, your Japanese needs to be fluent written and spoken.

If international school, itfs expensive. And you are still left with the problem of the visa. What would be the compelling explanation that you need to attend alone an international school in Japan. If your parents were to come along, great. You get a visa as a dependent (eg if your parents get a job in Japan) and can attend international school of you can pay for it.

Maybe there is some school exchange program you could look into???
by LikeBike (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Can I live alone in Japan at 17 2020/2/1 22:22
There is only one international boarding school in Japan - called UWC (United World College) Japan.


It's expensive but also includes a large number of scholarships. These are mainly for people from developing countries who are highly academic but do not have the funds to attend UWC Japan.

Going back to the visa arrangement - you will need a parent of guardian. This might be what happens in the dorms, but who is going to sign as a guarantor on an apartment if your not of legal age and don't have a guardian.

I will also confirm - unless you can speak and more specifically READ Japanese (not just Hiragana), do not attend a Japanese high school where the language of instruction is Japanese. There are limited places that I've heard of that support people who are coming permanent residents of Japan, but these are government run and are not made for people who just want to live in Japan.

As a teacher who has taught students internationally for a decade (with many students who do not speak English as their first language), it takes a good 4 to 5 years to learn the academic language if you can read and write the alphabet. Japanese and Chinese take significantly longer due to the 3000+ characters you need just to read to a middle school level. This is often why Chinese/Japanese schools are seen as more rote learning that the Western educational system, if you can't read then it's a bit difficult to learn through inquiry.

This is the last post I will make on this thread.
by mfedley rate this post as useful

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