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No Bike theft 2008/3/13 03:03
I was in Tokyo 2 weeks ago it was my first trip and i could not believe that I could not see one bycycle locked up!!!
If you did that in the (UK) your bike will be gone in less than five minutes!!!

by Johnny Hewison rate this post as useful

bikes 2008/3/13 04:23
re the thread: I have been to japan many times, especially in the Kansai,and it definitely feels much safer than many places, including my home town. Most of the crime in Japan is between people who knew one another.
re the previous post on bikes: many Japanese bikes look like they aren't locked because they don't have a chain or a big U lock securing them to a post or..but they have a built-in lock on the front wheel that look like the frame so it isn't obvious. It isn't the most sturdy lock in the world but it will prevent someone from grabbing the bike and biking away. It is also true that some people don't bother to lock their old basic bike (they cost around US $ 100 new and less if second hand) especially during the day when shopping near their home. check link below. www.japan-guide.com/e/e2210.html
by Monkey see rate this post as useful

Bike theft 2008/3/13 13:32
Johnny,

Bike theft is actually widespread in Japan, as there is a small but not insignificant percentage of the population that seems to think it is OK to "borrow" a bike if it is left unlocked or even when locked. I've had a locked bike stolen from in front of my house, and when I lived in an apartment block close to a station, it seemed to be pretty common for people's bikes to get pinched - almost on a monthly basis.
by Dave in Saitama rate this post as useful

2 exceptions 2008/3/13 16:22
Bikes and umbrellas- the big exceptions to the fabled Japanese honesty.

I have also had my bike totally dismembered by some kind person, but it was probably my fault for leaving it on a street near the station on Saturday night...
by Sira rate this post as useful

Never felt safer 2008/3/13 19:52
Walking around at night ,half cut I found even then people would politely point in the right direction .
I've been told the main job the police have is helping lost tourist's. They looked bored as hell ,with nothing to do.
The only time I felt anything romotely threatening was when a Middle Eastern man rode by , the look on his face was as if he wanted to cut my throat.
Japanese friends have told me there are place's in Tokyo where they dont like outsider's , but I think you would have to look hard before you found trouble .
It would more likely come from a foreigner .
by John2u rate this post as useful

Tokyo is unbelievably safe 2008/4/10 05:06
I actually just landed from Tokyo ( Narita ) yesterday, and I was amazed at how safe it was. I looked up it's extremely low crime stats, but it really hit home when I was there. My wife and I walked all around at all hours and never felt even a little bit threatened in any way. The biggest concern for us was those ultra creepy giant crows everywhere. Japanese society is very honorable, and I was assisted many times by citizens on the street and officials as well. We joked about the rude American flight attendants on the way home, saying, well, we're certainly not in Tokyo anymore!
by American Visitor rate this post as useful

What? 2008/4/10 16:56
Getting beat up by a bunch of guys? Unheard of. It's very rare that a gang of hoods would attack someone. There are purse snatcher incidents, bikes being 'borrowed', and houses being robbed, but never gang attacks. That's a first for me to hear. I have often taken walks late at night with no fear at all. The red light district has many people around and no one seems to be looking for trouble.
by Kiyo rate this post as useful

the statistics say otherwise 2008/4/12 07:50
Ordinary Japanese people are just as capable of committing crime as those with some sort of ''international influence'', or foreigners.

In spite of what the media here would have you think, per head of population foreigners in Japan actually commit fewer crimes than Japanese, and most of those crimes are visa-related, i.e. overstaying, and not violent crime.

Please, as foreigners in Japan, lets not spread the false idea that foreigners commit more crime than Japanese- it's detrimental to us personally and it's just not true.
by Sira rate this post as useful

the statistics say otherwise 2008/4/12 08:56
Sira, here is the statistics.
http://www.wafu.ne.jp/~gori/diary3/20060310hanzai.html

You are right that the foreigners in Japan actually commit fewer crimes than Japanese.
But unfortunately 'Zainichi'(not only Korean-Japanese) are not.
by . rate this post as useful

getting political... 2008/4/12 15:08
Zainichi are Japan-born and raised, so for almost all intents and purposes, are Japanese, often 3rd generation. I think it's very misleading and inaccurate to call them foreigners, and in many other countries in the world, they wouldn't be considered foreigners at all.
by Sira rate this post as useful

zainichi 2008/4/12 17:11
I think that the impression the Japanese get from zainichi crime is very similar to those people get of Italian mafia in non-Italian countries or the Gangsta in the U.S. that consists of ethnic community members. Most of them have probably got involved in crime due to their unfortunate upbringings as ethnic minorities.

And like many ethnic minorities all over the world, a large number of zainichi are well-mannered, contributing, decent people and a large number of them were brought up in fortunate environments.

In any case, I agree with Sira that it's important that the foreign population itself try hard to make a good impression on the society, and at the same time, I truly think it's important that locals try to see them as equals, meaning to treat them right when they act right and to tell them they're wrong when they are and to not just ignore them for the reason that they are foreign.
by Uco rate this post as useful

..... 2008/4/13 10:48
Well I think the topic is well covered, but I'll just add the only crime I have been apart out of 21 trips to Japan, which last around 3 week each.

Was once roughly around 2am in akiharbra, where a man demanded my money. I told him no with a bit of authority and he took off.
This is about the only crime that I hear that happens from time to time.
That to me is hardly a concern, as I too have walked in dark alley late at night in all parts of Japan without fear.

My only concern in Japan is when walking around a blind corner---the bikes, some of those guys fly though the alleys way too fast. However most bikers have lights and do ring their bell.
by Fooly rate this post as useful

official crime statistics 2008/5/21 16:54
found some official statistics about crime.. tokyo compared to new york

robberies 2005:
tokyo - 733
new york - 35 000

links:
new york crime stat's:
http://www.disastercenter.com/crime/nycrime.htm

tokyo/japan crime stat's:
http://www.stat.go.jp/data/nenkan/pdf/yhyou25.pdf
by tiikeri rate this post as useful

Its safe 2008/7/13 23:33
Ive been to Japan 3x in the past few years and spent plenty of time walking the streets of Tokyo and Osaka by myself. Not ONCE did I feel unsafe. Coming from NYC, Tokyo is a joke when it comes to crime (almost non existant it seemed).
by Sam rate this post as useful

Bike Theft. 2008/7/15 09:41
Yes bike theft is a problem. My host family was telling me about how their nine year old's bike had been stolen from school. Overall I felt extremely safe in Japan. In Tokyo, in Hiroshima in Kyoto, it wasn't any different in any of the big cities that I went to. That's not to say that there isn't any crime in Japan. The locals will also testify to that and a number of them told me that crime is on the rise in Japan. Like people have said, if you don't bother the Yakuza then they won't bother you. The Yakuza are a professional criminal organisation and tend not to resort to petty crime.
by Blankdisc rate this post as useful

Relatively safe, but don't be fooled 2008/7/16 12:07
Crime is lower in Japan than in most places, but a lot of the crime statistics are bogus. Two gaijin women I know (I dated one, my roommate married the other) were attacked in separate incidents in Japan. One was raped by an Arab guy, and the other was dragged off the street into a slow-moving van by a Japanese guy, but she beat him up so badly he told his driver to stop the van to let her out. In both cases, these women reported the rape (or attempted rape) to the police and the police response was, "Well, what do you expect US to do about it?" (Correct answer: question the gaijin women about whatever they might have done that they shouldn't have, like beating up guys in vans, and then release them on their own recognizance with a stern warning.) The other poster's comment that Japan is so safe that all the "bored" police do is help tourists is almost right, but the reason is because that's all they know how to do. (Actually, they don't even know how to do that, but that's a different topic....) So there are two more violent crimes in Japan that won't tarnish Japan's image because, statistically, they "didn't happen". Despite it all, Japan IS a very safe place in terms of violent crime. The scuzzy low-lifes that infest so many other countries are remarkably few and well-constrained by societal peer pressure here, and it makes even Tokyo surprisingly safe. Just don't make the mistake that feeling completely safe means being completely safe. It's not dangerous enough here to justify any fear--it really isn't, except of traffic!--but it's not safe enough that you can leave your common sense at home.
by Gaijin Guy rate this post as useful

Yakuza 2008/7/17 12:48
I'm seeing a good deal of people saying to watch out for the Yakuza, and while yes they are an organized gang for the most part you will be fine. I remember my first week in Tokyo I accidently walked inside several places I probably should not have gone (clubs owned by the gang). They were more surprised than anything, and most of the time ended up wanting to talk or have a drink. The only time you'll actually get caught up in a Yakuza incident would be when you just don't listen to them or are trying to be an ass.

As with the example above, some of those same clubs I was in by mistake, someone asked me nicely to leave saying I should not be there, and I left. No issues
by Cale rate this post as useful

Young yakuza 2008/7/17 13:13
How about the young wanna be yakuza? Are they at all dangerous? They make a lot of noise, but is that as far as they go?
by Max rate this post as useful

agree 2008/7/17 17:50
I agree, I don't think yakuza will give most foreigners a hard time (as long as you are white or black). if you are asian you may get some flak but at worst you'll be told to get out.

in fact one time i was working at a hotel and some guys i'm POSITIVE were yakuza invited me to come have a drink with them after work. we all got unbelievably drunk and went skiing the next day. these were oldish guys from kansai and just had yakuza all over them. i guess foreigners are a kind of curiosity for them.
by winterwolf rate this post as useful

Public bath 2008/7/17 18:56
I've been with Yakuza in the public baths. They walked into the sauna where I was. I just sat there and didn't look at them or talk to them. They seemed friendly with the regulars that went there though. No trouble for me at all.
by Joe rate this post as useful

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