Important information on a part-time job advertisement

All part-time job advertisement in Japan have the same format, even the simplest ones must include important information. If you can’t read Kanji, it might be a little difficult to understand. The most important things you need to pay attention to are:

Distance from the nearest station

For example, 5-minute walk from Shinjuku station would be 新宿駅より徒歩5分. All advertisements don’t have romaji, so if you can’t read the station’s name you should google it for the romaji or hiragana. After knowing the station name, check the distance from it to your house. If it’s too far away, you should find another one. Most students either find a place near their house or school, so that they can go to work fast and easily. If you want to work at night, find an arubaito near your house so you can walk or ride a bicycle home, because you might not be able to catch the last train home. If you live too far away from school, find a place near your school to work. If you work somewhere also far from home, you’ll have to spend too much time a day travelling to work and school alone. That would be a waste of precious time, which you should spend on working or studying instead.

The qualifications (資格)

Most part-time job don’t have specific qualifications, so everyone can apply. Some places don’t accept high school students, but you don’t have to worry about that unless you’re Japanese. Some places don’t accept foreigners. That you should worry about. An advertisement that doesn’t mention anything about foreigners means it’s okay for everyone to apply. An advertisement that says they don’t accept foreigners mean they only want Japanese people. So when you look at an ad and see the word 外国人, you should check if they are accepting foreigners or not. Don’t worry, 99% of places accept all nationalities and won’t mention anything about it, so you should go ahead and apply. Just remember how to tell if a place is accepting a foreigner or not, in order to save your time and effort. Remember that all places don’t put “must be able to speak Japanese” in their ad, because that’s a no brainer. So make sure you can speak Japanese before applying.

Part-time job in Japan (arubaito)

This is what a part-time job ad looks like.


The salary (時給)

Now we’ve come to the most important part. What’s the average part-time salary in Japan? It depends on the location. If you work in busy districts located in the center of Tokyo, expect a salary of ¥900-¥1000 yen an hour. If you work in a less busy areas, you’ll receive a salary of ¥800-¥850 yen. Arubaito salary in Tokyo won’t be less than ¥800, however you should expect low-paying job in Yokohama or Chiba. ¥1000 an hour should be the highest amount you can expect if you work during the day. Some places might offer ¥1050-¥1100 yen an hour, but they are very rare and usually have strict requirements. Don’t bother looking for a part-time job that pays more than ¥1100 an hour, because it doesn’t exist. Only company employees have that kind of salary. However, you can earn more by working at night. All private stores and companies in Japan must pay their workers an extra 25% of their salary if they work after 10pm. So if your salary is ¥1000 yen, you’ll receive ¥1250 yen to work at night. Remember many places require a training time for newbies. You might have to work 3-4 months with low salary as a trainee before they give you an actual salary.


Type of job (職種)

Remember that not all places let you work at night, unless you work at a bento (弁当-lunch box) store. Due to the nature of the business, the bentos must be prepared at night so it can be delivered to the customers in the morning or noon. For this particular reason, you might not be able to work during day if you choose this type of job. This job requires minimum Japanese skill because you don’t have to interact with the customers, so it’s very competitive. Most of these places are far from the center of Tokyo, so prepare to spend a lot of time commuting. If you want another job that doesn’t require good command of Japanese, you can work as a delivery man for Yamato. Another popular type of job is cashier for stores or restaurants. Convenience stores (conbini) are everywhere and they normally put job advertisement outside the store, so people can see it easily. Fast-food restaurants like Mac or KFC also hires a lot. This type of job requires you to speak Japanese well because you must serve the customers (接客). So if you think your Japanese is not good enough, you shouldn’t apply for it yet.

Working time (勤務時間)

Most places have flexible timetable for you to choose the time to work that fits your schedule. All you have to do is tell them what time you want to work and they’ll arrange it for you. Some places don’t have fixed schedule so you might have to tell the owner (オーナー) or head of restaurant/store (店長) your schedule every week in order for them to set up a working schedule not just for you but for everyone as well. However some places do have a fixed timetable and they’ll let you know when you can work. You should find a job that has flexible schedule so it won’t effect your daily life. Remember that most places requires you to work at least 3-4 hours a day (not every day of the week). Most places know that foreign students can work only 28 hours a week and they’ll arrange your schedule with that in mind. But do check it yourself whether the managers give you more than 28 working hours a week, just in case they forget, or you might get into trouble with the Japanese government.


The most common treatments are giving you an uniform and a free meal during work. Most small restaurants offer free food. However if you work for big fast-food chain stores like Mac or KFC, you might not be offered a meal. Many people prefer jobs that offer them meals so they can save money. Most places offer to raise your salary in time, but remember that it varies. Some places will give you a higher salary when they see that you’re doing your job very well. Some places will only increase your salary when you become a manager, which might be impossible for a foreigner. So don’t expect too much. The most important treatment, which is better than a free meal, is the travelling expenses. Most places offer to pay for your train tickets, with the maximum of ¥1000 a day or more. This can save you a lot of money if you work near your school. They’ll practically pay for your train ticket to school, all you have to do is walk from school to work.

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