How to manage money may be one of the big concerns of many prospective students. Please check below for basic information on money matters in Japan.
Japanese Yen is the only acceptable currency in Japan except at places like an airport. Japanese currency comes in the following denominations: 500yen, 100yen, 50 yen, 10 yen, 5yen, 1yen coins and 10,000yen, 5,000 yen, 2,000yen and 1,000 yen banknotes.
Click here for a currency converter to find out how much this is in your local currency.
Cash is the most common form of payment in Japan. It is easy to withdraw cash from Bank ATM Machines, which are available on campus and also at many places such as banks, post offices, shopping malls, and convenience stores, with various bank cash cards. You can open a bank or postal office deposit account at APU during orientation week.
Credit cards (VISA, Mastercard, American Express, JCB) can be used at department stores and major shops, however it can be difficult in supermarkets and retailers. Cheques are not accepted, and Eftpos/Swift payments at the cash-register of shops using your bank cash-card are not available. Instead, payment with your mobile phone using the deposit money system is getting popular.
It is said that Japan is an expensive country, however located in Beppu, APU has the advantage of being situated in a more reasonably priced area. In fact, rent can be almost half as much as that in big cities like Tokyo or Osaka.
Click here for an idea of prices for accommodation, food and other living expenses while at APU.
When you first come to APU, you will need to have at least enough cash with you to survive for your first couple of months, before your bank account is set up. We suggest that you should bring about 100,000JPY to cover living costs for the first 1-2 months.
Please change your money to Japanese Yen or US Dollars in your country before you leave. If you have US dollars, please change them for Japanese Yen at the airport when you arrive. There are no money exchange services in the vicinity of APU.
You can do part time work within the hours that are set by the Japanese government. International students (holding a "College Student Visa") can work up to 28 hours per week during the semester, and to 8 hours per day during the break time that is approximately 4 months. Student need to obtain work permission before working. The APU Student Office will help you apply for it.
Wages are roughly from 700 JPY to 1,000 JPY per hour. There are jobs available on and off campus. Many students work off campus, at hotels, factories, local restaurants and shops. Since Beppu has many tourists from all over the world, there are many jobs available particularly in the hospitality industry. APU Student Office will keep updating information on job vacancies and also many students find work by word of mouth.
It is my pleasure to be a Library Assistant (LA) in APU library. LA is not only a part time job; besides the shift that we do as an assistant, the members are also divided into three different teams; the Guidance team, Manner team and Project team. Each of these teams creates different projects or ideas, in order to make a better APU library.So far, the LA group had carried out projects such as “Books Recommendation Corner”, “Database Guidance”, “Books and Magazines Recycle Festival” and so on.
Joining the LA group, I have met a group of people who love APU library a lot just like I do; who not only are doing great at academic studies but are also very active in circles or other programs. Also, the library staff are very nice and friendly; we work together and learn from each other. It is a great experience being a LA in your university life. I hope you can enjoy it as well.
I've been doing my part time work at a Japanese restaurant for about two years now. I didn't speak Japanese very well at first but the staff are always trying to chat with me and my co-workers made a big effort in showing me the ropes which was such a great help. I've really improved my Japanese, especially my formal Japanese, as well as having learned to cook Japanese food. It has also boosted my confidence as I feel like I understand the particular manners and rules of Japanese culture. Working part time is a great way to experience Japan. Why don't you give it a try?