Long Time No Japan! What Japanese would Feel About Japan After being Away




What surprised you when you visited Japan very first time?

If you have been living in Japan for a while, what made you surprised?


In this article I summarized how Japanese feel about Japan after being away for a few years. All comments are from Japanese who live or have lived in foreign countries.


No Coupons


NY Guy

What? We cannot use any coupons? I’m a president of company and live in New York. I always use coupons and so do others.

It’s pretty usual and we better use coupons whenever possible!

But when I had lunch with clients in Japan, my secretary told me not to use any coupons. People also say don’t use coupons when you have a date.

That’s funny Japanese rules. But I have to follow that when I’m in Japan. 


It’s a business manner not to use any coupons. You might think that’s unpractical and stupid, but Japanese care about what others would think about them.

Therefore, it’s very important to follow the rule if you want to be a successful businessperson in Japan. If you hang out with your friends, you can use coupons!




No To Go Box

Woman A

If you cannot finish meals, what would you do? In US and Canada, you can get a box to go. But in Japan people don’t take away leftover.

That means Japanese don’t have any leftover? Yes, they do have leftover, but they don’t bring it home.

Just leave in a restaurant. That’s a shame they don’t have a to-go-box.



It’s Japanese tradition that we don’t take away leftover. I guess they never thought of bring it back home. Moreover, Japanese meals tend to have smaller portion. Thus they don’t have leftover and no need to bring it.



Are Hosts Religious Group?


Guy A

When I was walking in Shinjuku, I saw several hosts who worked in host club. They looked all the same. I mean, they supposed to dress and set up hair nicely to attract female customers.

But they looked all the same so looked like they are a religious group or something.

I don’t really understand why women go Host Club and spend a lot of money there.


Host Club is popular among certain women. There are countless Host Clubs in Shinjuku.



Japanese Love English?




Girl A

When I talk to people, some say “oh, you have stayed in US? Speak English! Say something in English~~!! Please~~!”

What can I say? It’s annoying and I don’t know how to deal with this kind of person.





Always Crowded

Woman B

Wherever you go in Tokyo, it’s always crowded. Station is busy, train is packed and announcement is repeated on public transportation…

Weekends and holidays are hell. One time I went to Ueno station before Christmas and it was soooo crowded and I felt sick.

I grew up in Tokyo and felt sick. That’s funny.


It won’t happen in countryside but big cities like Tokyo, you might feel sick if it’s been a while. Avoid visiting Tokyo during Golden Week, Valentine’s day and Christmas!



Smoking in Restaurant

Woman C

One thing I don’t like about Japan is that people smoke cigarette in restaurant. Izakaya is terrible. I don’t smoke and I’m very sensitive to smoke.

When I meet with friends at restaurant, I’m annoyed by smoke and cannot concentrate on conversation and meal.

I hope Japanese government ban smoking indoor and smokers go outside just like North America.


In Canada, you cannot smoke inside the building. I didn’t like cigarettes before but now I hate to smell in restaurant in Japan.

I lose appetite and I’m sure other people feel the same if they don’t smoke.




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