While the JET Programme does cover a lot, if not most, of the costs in regards to moving and settling in Japan there are some things you will have to be responsible for. Keep in mind this post is for Hyogo JETs so if you are assigned to another prefecture it might be a little different for you.
The costs that you will be responsible for are:
- accommodation – your stay at Keio Hotel
- transport – Shinkansen from Tokyo to Shin Osaka // + in rare cases : transport from Yashiro to your school or new home
- luggage – the luggage you shipped from the Airport/Hotel to your school or house
Transportation & Accommodation Costs
You will need to cover the cost of these but most of it will then be reimbursed by your Contracting Organisation.
Don’t stress about it too much, as the bill will probably land on your desk 1 to 5 months after you arrive. Some COs might even bump up your salary in advance to help you cover the costs.
So just enjoy your time in the swanky Keio Plaza and zip your way past Mt Fuji to your new home in Hyogo!
The total cost of Tokyo Orientation comes to around 65000 Yen.
Depending on your location, you may also have additional costs such to do with buses which may be used to help get you to your accommodation .
In addition to Transportation and Accommodation costs you will have to pay the fee for sending your luggage from Tokyo airport/Hotel to your school or house (the luggage you send when you reach Tokyo). The luggage cost will depend on how many pieces you send. We would recommend to not be especially frugal about these costs. You will be sharing a hotel room with 2 or 3 other JETs and there is not a whole lot room for your luggage. There might be an option on the 2nd night in Keio Hotel where you can send more luggage to your school or home, keep in mind that you may receive it a few days after you actually reach your home.
Overall it can be approximated that you would need around 65000 Yen – 75000 Yen to cover all costs (hotel, transport, luggage). It seems like a lot of money but don’t worry your 1st pay day (on the 16th of August) is relatively close to when you first arrive which should assist you in covering such costs. Remember that you may not even get the bill for Tokyo Orientation until much later (a few months after you arrive), it certainly won’t appear on your desk the first week you arrive so don’t stress it!
It is relatively easy to go on a spending spree the first few weeks as a JET in a new environment but it is important to ask yourself when purchasing things “do i really need this now or can I buy this a few months later?”.
Whilst the topic about Tokyo Orientation costs comes up quite a bit during the first month of being on the JET program, many people tend to forget about it and end up spending their savings, only to get shocked and confused when they receive the bill later and realizing they probably should’ve managed their money a bit better. Don’t fall into this trap! It’s okay to be a bit frugal during the first few months, that way you’ll have more savings and less financial surprises!