There are many international students who are finding part-time jobs in Japan. However, it is always difficult to find part time jobs that are suitable for them because of their Japanese ability. Today, I will introduce three jobs that can make the most of your linguistic ability. I will give you brief introduction of the job; it were strengths and weaknesses, requirement and required Japanese level.
1. Tutor (English)
As global human resources are more and more demanded in today’s society, more and more families in Japan are hiring international students to teach their kids English. Being a tutor is a good idea as the employers are very happy to see international students teaching English to their children. If you go to your university, you may see there are notifications that are seeking English tutors. Also, many language programs are seeking native teachers, such as Chinese, Korean, French, Spanish, German… You might find a opportunity to teach your mother tongue to your students!
Required Japanese level: ★ Basically you are going to teach English, so Japanese is often not required. Sometimes it is even better for you not to be able to speak Japanese as you can force students to speak in English!
Requirement: English skill. You do not need to be a native English speaker, as you are only teaching basic level English. Sometimes they require you to send your TOEFL score in order to see your level of English.
Strengths: High salaries compared to other work. Although it depends on the employers, there are employers who are willing to pay more than 2500 yen per hour, which is expensive compared to other part time work. It is also a good chance for you to study Japanese as you probably need to explain grammar to your students in simple Japanese.
Weaknesses: As one lesson only takes one to two hours, you will not be able to earn a lot of money in a week. If you are a tutor and need more money, I recommend you to find another part time job.
2. Service hospitality industry
One of the most popular types of part-time jobs among international students. There are many international students working as waiters in the restaurants. When you are working in the service industry, you will have many chances to talk to local Japanese people. It is a great chance for you to get used to the Japanese society; you will experience the top down the relationship between workers and the shop managers. If you are planning to work in Japan, doing part-time job in Japan is a great way to prepare yourself to enter the Japanese society! You will be talking to costumers in Keigo (honorific and humble form). Therefore it is a good opportunity for you to make use of what you have learned in your Japanese class!
Required Japanese level: ★★★ If your boss thinks your Japanese level is insufficient, they might change your position into another place, and you will not be able to practice your Japanese. Therefore, you will need to be able to speak fluent Japanese to work in the service industry.
Requirement: there are no many requirements needed, but usually they expect you to work multiple times a week. You have to be able to speak Japanese.
Strengths: Usually they demand you to work long hours. (It does not mean they force you to work long hours) Therefore, you can earn around 8000yen per day if you work 8 hours.
Weaknesses: Working in the service industry can be very tough depending on work because you need to serve a countless number of customers.
Many companies are looking for international students who can work as a translator. I have worked as a translator before, and it helped me to learn a lot of words during my work. Also, many companies are hiring translator as an internship, so if you get used to the work, they may give you further job opportunities, and you may get more job experience!
Required Japanese level: ★★ You do not need to communicate in Japanese, but you have to be able to understand Japanese in order to do translations.
Requirement: High level of English is required. Same as a tutor, the company might ask you to show your TOEFL score or any other score of English proficiency test. For those who speak Chinese, Chinese is much more demanded in today’s market, and many companies are finding Chinese speakers. However, usually simplified Chinese is more demanded than traditional Chinese, so if you are from Taiwan or Hong Kong, you should practice your simplified Chinese and get used to it.
Strengths: You can work at home. You can work with the employers through emails. This is one of the strongest strength of doing translation as it can reduce your time and cost for transportation. Also, working as a translator can improve your language skills, both English and Japanese. There are also companies that are seeking translators in different languages, so if you might also find work in your language if you are not a native English speaker!
Weaknesses: It is very time-consuming to finish one piece of translation, and the salary is not very high compared to the workload (although it depends on companies). For example, they give you 3 yen per word, so if you want to earn 3000yen, you need to write 1000words. I used to experience it, and it was very tough for me to finish the translation.
I hope my article can give you a better image of what part time job you can do in Japan to make the most of your English ability. Instead of spending your time washing dishes or doing any other labor work, I think it is a great idea to use your English ability to earn money. Also, from these part-time jobs, you can also improve both your English and Japanese skills!