Studying on an exchange program in Japan.

Takao Japan

Education under the St Petersburg University Student Exchange Program in Japan (Keio University)

Japan is everything!

Yes, the moment has come when one of my projects on the site needs to be completed. If in the previous post about Japan I talked about how my six months of life in the country went, then here I would like to draw conclusions and put an end to it. The article turned out to be quite large and the reason for this is that it contains answers to some questions. First, it's How's Japan? which I hear a lot when meeting someone. Usually I answer “Japan is wonderful”, and it takes a long time to tell more and it’s not clear how. Secondly, this is a brief description of the economy and management of Japan. Thirdly, these are tips about traveling in Japan, which I have repeatedly given to different people.

Takao Japan

I'll just cross out the title of the section, because now the design of the site is far from being in the first place for me 🙂 And when there is time and desire, I will start implementing some ideas

Almost a year has passed since the last post on this topic (yeah, I was late). Well, it's okay, let's go.


As I wrote initially, I had almost nothing to do with Japan before the trip. Now. I love this country. Sincerely and in many ways. I'm in love with Tokyo. I really like Japanese cuisine. I like Japanese cinema and anime. I am subscribed to many Japanese friends and acquaintances and I see how friendly and interesting people they are. I am amazed by Japan's nature and culture. I will definitely return to this country for at least 3-4 weeks with more money. Even in my personal notes, I already made a plan for a possible trip around the country. It seems to me that it is worth renting a car or traveling by train, staying in small towns, villages, walking around less touristy places and enjoying the atmosphere of this wonderful country.

ikebana in japan

That's how in 5 months I turned into a fan of Japan. Now I go to special screenings of Japanese directors, do not bypass Japanese music releases, visit ramen shops in Moscow, and pay attention to news about Japan. During this time, I wrote an article for the competition from tj, gave an interview to the Career Club about my trip, where I say similar things and published a film about Tokyo, which I have been working on for a long time.

TOKYO: day, year, life / 東京: 一日、一年、生活. The next post will be just about how I filmed the film.


Before moving on to advice, I would like to talk about the Japanese economic miracle and, in general, the management system of the Land of the Rising Sun. Initially, I planned to devote a separate article to this, but it did not work out.

Japan is known for its high economic and technological development. In the 80s and 90s, the Japanese economy began to grow strongly, there was a boom, thanks to which we know many of these stories about Japanese quality and technology. It was the era of the dawn of companies like Sony and many others.On one of the couples, we watched a documentary about that time, where it was said that people literally bathed in money and bought out all the real estate in the United States. This, as often happens, was followed by a crisis and the collapse of the entire system. Japan is still recovering from these problems and the mood of the people is now rather skeptical and cautious. The questions were raised about how Japan could catch up with the US and other countries and how not to lose the competition, since now is not the right time for an economic recovery.

skyscraper in central Tokyo

Japan has many features that distinguish it from other countries. These features have both pluses for the country as a whole and minuses. I would like to touch on the Japanese corporate system, which I know something about. Its essence is lifetime employment. An employee, getting into a company, gets into a family where he will not be abandoned. Various command systems of work, quality circles are used. A person is in a team in which he will work for the next 30-40 years. There is a growing up and aging of a person at work. At the same time, great attention is paid to quality and various methods of maintaining it are used. These are the canonical components of the Japanese system, which are now trying to transform to a more Western system with more freedom and flexibility. This system is one of the reasons for the appearance of difficulties in the Japanese economy. Since along with the friendliness, dedication of employees, maintaining quality, people also come tired, static, low innovation, centralization of companies, hierarchy. However, I really like that the Japanese at some point formed their own way, different from other countries.

If we talk about the everyday feeling of the development and manufacturability of the country, then I would say that such a feeling does not arise. For example, there is a card for the subway, on which you put money and pay in the subway, while you can use it in many stores and pay for almost anything (even in the university canteen). Once I was struck by the fact that you can pay for trains throughout the country with this card. I was far from Tokyo, at a small railway station, where there were almost no people. I paid at the turnstile with this card and then bought a drink of water from the machine at the station with the same card. And at that moment I had a wonderful sense of security. I am in a foreign country, far from the hostel, but nothing has changed! Everything is the same, and I can pay with the same card everywhere. Perfectly. BUT! With all this, bank cards are not common in Japan, no pipe for you. It is, but unpopular, many people use subway cards. Strange, right? Just another world that has its pros and cons.

Another thing that struck me is that the Japanese are very independent in terms of technology. I walked down the street and watched the workers make asphalt. There was a Japanese bulldozer, the Japanese had some kind of Japanese crowbar in his hands, a thick and protected Japanese mini-tablet hung around his neck. And that's how it is everywhere.That is, there is a feeling that they can do everything themselves. We obviously don't have that. And most of the equipment is foreign-made. I'm what it is. You do not need to produce everything yourself, but the fact that a nation is capable of producing a large number of complex technical devices is strong.

Probably, somehow I saw a brief description of the economy and management of Japan.

Japan Travel Tips

my travels in japan

Above you see a map with points where I was. As you can see from it, I was far from everywhere. Although the country is small, but still it is big))

If you are going to Japan for 7-10 days, then a good route for you would be:

osaka at night

    3 days in Tokyo to see many areas of this metropolis, visit traditional entertainment (sumo, kabuki theater), eat well and sleep in a capsule hotel

The most famous kabuki theater in Tokyo

View of Osaka from Japan's tallest skyscraper

And here you are again in Tokyo. Of course, the beauty of Japan is that you can go at any time of the year (but autumn or spring is best, because it rains in summer, and in winter it’s like autumn, but with sun and clear skies). You can go to Hokkaido and go skiing. In other northern regions there are lakes with monkeys. In the south, less populated regions, with jungle islands. In the very south there is Okinawa – local Hawaii with blue water and turtles. Regional festivals are often held throughout the country. Yes, and the country's tourist site is very good, on it you can find all the details about any cities, places and events.

  • In Japan it is expensive, but not so much. You can save if you want.
  • Transport is the most expensive, but it does not cost exorbitant amounts. Instead of a high-speed train, you can choose a night bus or train
  • English is bad, but if you know it, then you will understand everything by the signs. Be sure to download the map in advance + metro map + it would be nice to have an offline translator
  • There are no problems with Wi-Fi, it is even often in supermarkets, which are everywhere
  • There are many international chains like McDuck in Japan, you won't die in the morning
  • The Japanese are very friendly, even if they do not know English, they will help, you just need to ask

Things to do/try in Japan:


  • Onsen hot springs
  • Ramen – insanely delicious noodle soup, local fast food. Better try it ten times to fall in love

Tempura is another delicious dish.

Rice piss like rubber

That's it. I think that even with such a short plan of impressions it will be through the roof. Of course, it is worth additionally reading various articles, watching a video (but not Eagle and Tails) and boldly go to this beautiful country!

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