Do I have opportunities to meet Japanese people except NILS teachers?

Yes, we conduct regular field trips to museums, shrines, etc. for you to use Japanese outside our classrooms. Our school also has established a partnership with the Ogori International Exchange Association, and we participate in a variety of cultural events as part of the regular activities. They include summer festivals, rice-cake making, friendship parties, etc. In addition, we host a joint Christmas party with our group high school, Hitotsuba High School. We believe NILS provides a lot more opportunities to meet outside Japanese residents than average Japanese language schools.

I am worried about living abroad.

At NILS, we make sure each and every one of you has a successful experience both personally and academically. Our guidance covers wide areas of potential concerns for you. For example, we invite a police offer to talk about basic laws and regulations in Japan. We also go to a bank and the municipal hall with you to complete necessary procedures. Additionally, we conduct student orientations during the initial 3 months in order to make sure you are satisfied with your routine.

What is the weather in Japan?

We have distinct seasons in Japan, and as such, the temperatures and precipitation vary greatly depending on the season. We have a rainy season during the months of June and July. In Fukuoka, the summer temperature can reach between 30 degrees and 35 degrees (Celsius). In winter, the low temperature can dip to 0 degrees and 5 degrees (Celsius).

Can I withdraw cash from my bank account that I opened in my home country?

If you have a credit card (VISA, MasterCard, American Express, or JCB) or a debit card with these affiliations, you can withdraw cash from an ATM in Seven Eleven stores. You can also use ATMs at Postal Bank branches. Please check with your bank in advance.

Am I allowed to do a part time job?

If you have a pre-college visa, after receiving “Permission to Engage in Activities Outside the Scope of the Visa” from the Immigration Authority, then you will be eligible to work for up to 4 hours per day. It is not possible to receive this permission soon after entering school. Following entry on a student visa, you may apply for this permission and a test, if you pass the test given by school one month later.

Can I work part time while attending NILS programs?

[Full-time Intensive program]
Yes, you are permitted to work part time after you obtain a work permit issued by the Immigration Bureau of Japan. You can apply for the permit at the time of entry into Japan. With a student visa, you are permitted to work for a period not exceeding 28 hours a week during a semester, and for a period not exceeding 8 hours a day while you are on a long-term vacation.
[Short-Term Program]
No, you are prohibited from working in Japan on a short-stay visa.

How much do I need for living expenses?

You will need US$600-700 for living expenses such as meals, utilities (water, gas, electricity, cell phone), and miscellaneous.

Compare the cost of living in Japan:

Average Tokyo Area Osaka Area Fukuoka Area
$745
(89,000 yen)
$850
(102,000 yen)
$710
(85,000 yen)
$600
(72,000 yen)

The above fee includes monthly rent, meals, utilities, medical and other personal expenses.

Can I easily find part-time employment? What types of jobs are available?

It depends on how well you can speak Japanese. If you don’t speak Japanese at all, it is not easy to find work. We collect help-wanted information in our areas and help our students find work. Currently, our students work in distributions centers, bento (lunchbox) assembly plants, meat packing plants, convenience stores, restaurants, and English language schools.

Are dormitories available?

Yes. Dormitories are located near the Ogori campus with 2 to 3 bedrooms, a dining/kitchen area and a bathroom.
Each bedroom is well-furnished with desk, chair, bed, bed linens, small shelf, and air conditioner. There is no internet connection provided in the dormitory, but students can set one up by making a contract with one of the private internet service providers (for intensive program students only).

Please describe all the NILS’s student housing options and amenities.

[NILS Student Dormitory]Room features:

  • Bed
  • Blankets
  • Desk
  • 3-shelf bookcase
  • Air-conditioning
  • You need to share the kitchen and the bathroom with other students.
  • The shared space has a refrigerator, a washing machine, a microwave oven, and a large hot water thermos. Please use your own cookware and dishes, etc. For Internet service, you need to have your own contract with a provider.

[Leo Palace]Room features:

  • Bed
  • Futon
  • Table
  • Chair(s)
  • Closet
  • Air-conditioning system
  • TV
  • Washing machine
  • Refrigerator
  • Microwave oven
  • Internet ready
  • Please your own cookware and dishes, etc.

[Shared housing]Room features:

  • Bed
  • Futon
  • Desk
  • Chair(s)
  • Closet
  • Air-conditioning system
  • Refrigerator
  • Bathroom
  • Internet ready
  • Shared Kitchen
  • You can use the cookware provided
  • You can use the washing machine and dryer

[Home-stay]Room features:

  • Bed
  • Futon
  • Desk
  • Chair
  • Closet
  • Internet Usage

Do you provide meals?

No, we don’t provide meal services at either our dormitory, Leo Palace (an apartment for our students), or the shared housing. You need to prepare your own meals. You can buy groceries and cook, purchase take-home items, or eat out. Around our housing options, there are a number of supermarkets, fast food restaurants, and convenience stores. You can save a lot of money by cooking your own meals.

[Home-Stay Students]
If you are a Short-Term student staying with a family, you can select one of the two options: breakfast only, or breakfast and dinner.

Can I have a pet?

Pets are not permitted either in the NILS dormitory, Leo Palace, shared housing, or in the home stay option. If you would like to bring your pet, please contact us. We can put you in touch with an apartment owner that allows pets. However, there are not many properties that allow pets, and it may take you 30 minutes to an hour to commute to school. In addition, pet friendly apartments usually cost $6,500 to $9,000 annually excluding utilities.

How expensive are the utilities?

The NILS dormitory, Leo Palace, shared housing or the home-stay option all include utilities. However, Leo Palace may charge you for extra if you use more than what is considered the ordinary amount. Please try to save energy. When you have your own apartment and pay utilities separately, you will end up paying approximately, 10,000 yen to 15,000 per month.

How much travel time should I allow from a Leo-Palace apartment to the school?

[Full-time Intensive program]
Leo-Palace private apartments are everywhere in the city. We try to arrange your apartment near the school.
If the apartment is located in Ogori City, it takes about 10 minutes by bicycle.
Otherwise, it can take one hour by train.

[Short-Term Program]
It takes about 15-30 minutes by train.

Can I rent a Leo Palace apartment with a friend?

Yes, the maximum occupancy at Leo Palace is 2. If you share a Leo Palace apartment with another person, you need to pay an additional $130 if you are staying for one month, $160 for 2 months, and $190 for 3 months. We can provide you an extra set of futon but not a bed. Either you use the extra futon on the floor or take advantage of a loft apartment if such a unit is available.

Can I choose a non-smoking family? Is internet access also available?

Yes, you can. You are required to submit to us the Home-stay Application Form.
We will arrange for a host family according to your needs regarding matters of smoking, pets, allergies, meals (for example, vegetarian) and children.
The school will arrange for a family with wireless internet access in their home.

Can I stay with a host family with my friend?

Yes, you may. Please note  that we do not guarantee to find a host family willing to have 2 students, though we try to follow your request. If you and your friend wish to stay with a host family, please contact us at least 2 months before the start of your classes. We will check for availability. By the way, even if you “share” a host family with your friend, you pay the same rent. (There is no discount.)