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I answered this question like more than a month ago in Fukuoka. I've since left Japan, but I made this video with my thoughts on this question.

Is Japan foreign friendly?


Probably not so much if you ask me, but it depends. It's going to be more friendly if you learn Japanese, but you'll still be a "foreigner".

I also asked this question to teachers in Fukuoka more than 10 years ago. You can see what they said in this interview with 3 teachers in Japan.

What is foreign friendly about Japan?

Well, I can't speak for all but as an American I can tell you it's one of the best places in East Asia in terms of visas. You can enter without a visa and stay for 90 days. You can leave once and come back and stay for a total of 180 days in a year.

Then granted you have enough time you can change that visa to a work visa or say a cultural visa and not have to leave Japan to do it. In my experience I always had to leave the country to change my visa in China, Korea and Taiwan except in Japan.

But wait...

There's one more good thing.

And I think it's not just for Americans.

I believe that if you live in Japan for 5 years you can apply for a resident visa that will allow you to stay long term.