Country Insights

Osaka

Once called "The Nations Kitchen" for its unique and delicious dishes

Katsudon

Katsudon is one of Japan's primary dishes

Cherry Blossom Festival

The most beautiful trees in the world are celebrated in Osaka

Currency

Today, $1.00 USD buys 111.04 Japanese Yen

Explore Japan

There’s something intriguing about Japan - images of dragons, cherry blossoms and samurais come to mind. From the peacefulness found in the rural villages to the bright lights flickering in Tokyo, Japan is a country where ancient traditions collide with the 21st century. Sign up to be a World Explorer in Japan and get to know the country and its people by living with a local host family during a short-term cultural immersion program.

CHI works with trusted partner agencies who screen and interview potential host families. Remember that our host families in Japan are volunteering to open up their homes to you, so it’s always nice to offer a helping hand around the house. The preferred stay in Japan is one to two months. You may be placed with two families if you want to stay longer than one month. We offer a limited number of placements year-round in the Osaka/Kyoto area of Japan. Here you can visit the Great Buddha of Kamakura. Past participants have studied samurai sword fighting, sang karaoke and visited local elementary schools.

The cultural differences between Japan and America are vast. It is crucial that our World Explorers understand the way of life in Japan before starting their programs. A Skype orientation is given before every departure to make sure the Japanese values and way of life are understood. For example, being too direct in Japan, even just through body language, can be considered rude. People in the U.S. are taught to look directly in someone's eyes when speaking or listening to show they are actively participating in the conversation. In Japan, extended eye contact can be uncomfortable between people who aren't close, and eyes are often adverted. Japanese people also tend to be more reserved than Americans, and share less personal or sensitive information, even with close friends.

Please note that Japan is a very popular destination, and placements are extremely limited. Unfortunately, we cannot accommodate every applicant interested in Japan.

ADDITIONAL OPPORTUNITY

CHI also offers an exciting volunteer and work opportunity in addition to our home tutor option in Japan: Teach English at a School in Tokyo.

Contact a WE customer care specialist for more information or view more details on our international internship page.

Cost Calculator

We understand that keeping the World Explorers cost down is as important as the life-changing experience you will enjoy. Hence, we prepared a cost calculator which shows the cost of the program (excluding airfare) compared to the cost of a standard vacation. The prices are calculated according to the destination chosen, the arrival and departure dates, and the length of your stay. The length of your stay is an especially important factor: the longer you stay abroad, the cheaper the cost per day becomes.

CHI is a non-profit organization, but we still have fixed costs that are necessary for running the program. Our overseas partners are actually for-profit, and we must take that into consideration as well. Our partners do the work to find and screen excellent host families that match your interests and needs!

Do you have questions about your trip costs? Do you have questions about Japan? We are here to serve you!

Contact Us Apply Now

What other world explorers have to say

  • My host family is extremely nice, and I feel lucky to have met them. My schedule is quite tough since I am teaching 8 little kids (from neighboring families) in different time slots, and it is difficult to control them when they are together! The age group ranges from 2 years to 7 years and every child has a different level. I have to teach the ABCs to two students and then I have to teach basic English grammar to the rest. Sometimes I read stories, and sometimes I have to have a conversation with them so that I can check whether they are following me or not. I am really happy to get this opportunity and to have met wonderful people through my host family. I also made few good friends here with whom I hang out in my free time

    Halima C. World Explorer in Japan, January 2014
  • My placement was wonderful, and I really enjoyed my month in Japan. I have so many amazing memories from the experience, and have many people I hope to keep in contact with. I definitely would like to return someday, and I’d really like to go through the program again in the future to a different country.

    Sarah B. World Explorer in Japan, April 2012

Be the next traveler to enjoy a fun and life-changing experience volunteering abroad!

Sign me up!