It is always important to learn the culture and customs of a country one is visiting.
Most of the NILS students are between the ages of 18 and mid 20’s; young and energetic! Some students enjoy having friends over at night on weekends. Some also work after school and come home late and start cooking dinner at night. We all have different daily routines, but it is important to be courteous to your neighbors. Here are a few basic tips on being a good neighbor.
Please be quiet after 9:00 p.m.
One of the most common complaints from neighbors is the noise. Young students are just having fun when they have friends over to share a meal or listen to music, etc. However, please enjoy your evenings quietly after 9:00 so as not to disturb your neighbors as Japanese apartments are built very close to one another. If you work after school and come home late at night, please remember that some of your neighbors may already be asleep. Simply walking around your apartment may cause a lot of noise for those who live below your floor.
Know your trash and recyclables
Most Japanese communities have very clear guidelines regarding trash and recyclables. We show our students what and how to recycle various items and how to discard trash, but it’s not always simple. Please follow the guidelines as closely as you can. Otherwise, your trash will stay in your apartment. Trash collectors will not haul your discards unless they are properly organized.
Alcohol and tobacco
In Japan, only those above 20 years of age can consume alcohol and smoke cigarettes. Some stores will ask you to show your identification. If you are older than 20, you can legally consume alcohol or smoke cigarettes, but please pay attention to the following.
Driving under the influence: laws against driving under the influence have become very strict since a tragic traffic accident in Fukuoka a few years ago. Please note that the same laws apply not only to cars and motorcycles but also to bicycles.
- Drunk driving – a jail sentence of 5 years or less or a fine of 1 million yen or less
- Driving under the influence – a jail sentence of 3 years or less or a fine of 500,000 yen
Furthermore, if you cause an accident while drunk or under the influence, the penalty could be much more severe. Please never drive while drunk or under the influence. At NILS, if you are found to have driven drunk, you are immediately expelled from school.
Fire safety: if you smoke, please take extra caution. Please make sure to extinguish your cigarettes. If you start a fire, you will cause terrible damage to others around you. Please make sure that your cigarettes are extinguished before going to bed or leaving home.