Is it important to know English in Japan?

Is it necessary to know English in Japan? What is the use of speaking English? Do the Japanese speak English? Although some people don't like it, English is a necessary language anywhere on the planet, even in Japan. In this article, we will see the importance of knowing English in Japan, whether to live or travel.

The majority of japanese don't speak english and many who speak have a strange accent. Some people think that is why English is not so useful, but most Japanese people try and suck up to the English language.

Is it important to know English in Japan?

Watch the following dialog:

So-and-so: “Or friend! I want to go to Japan! Wouldn't it be better to learn Japanese?” 
Brazilian in Japan: It sure is! It's much better to learn Japanese!
So-and-so: Do you already know Japanese?
Brazilian in Japan: I don't, just the basics.

Let's face it, although it is possible to learn the basics of the Japanese language in 3 months. You won't learn enough to have a conversation and create a friendship while in Japan. And if you invent to use the Google translator in a conversation, you will go through many bizarre situations.

Google translator can save you to translate some words yes. But translating full sentences just doesn't work. That's where English comes in. Even if you don't know any English, it will end up being part of your stay in Japan at one time or another.

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Why should I know English in Japan?

It will come in super handy when you are on the plane or at an airport. Maps, signs, and most restaurant menus are in both Japanese and English. And here's an opinion that can generate controversy... I feel that employees treat us better and talk more if we speak in English. Now because?

"I don't know, I just know it was like that." – Chicó, Northeastern philosopher.

And then there's the issue of the Gaijin Hunters, who are Japanese hunters of foreign friends who use us to train English and take pictures together!

“Interesting friends? Get out!" You might think so, but Gaijin Hunters are more open to talking to foreigners, and they like to help too. I remember once I was lost in Kyoto, I found a group of young Japanese people sitting on the sidewalk and I asked for information using typical Brazilian English. (Improvisation and winding)

Is it important to know English in Japan?

The guys were really nice, not only did they tell me where to go, they took me to the bus stop (which was 30 meters away from where they were), they waited for the bus with me and they even said goodbye while I was leaving.

Maybe they were Gaijin Hunters, maybe not. Maybe I'm prejudiced and hastily judging people. God only knows.

List of benefits of knowing English in Japan

Even if you have an advanced level of Japanese, English can be useful as many times you may not be able to read the numerous characters or understand certain text or warnings. There are numerous benefits and I will list them below:

  • Use Google translator more easily;
  • Talk to Japanese people who only want to speak English;
  • Read signs, information and pamphlets in English;
  • English is easier than Japanese;
  • Many Cinema films are dubbed in English and subtitled in Japanese;
  • Helps you to find jobs in Japan;
  • English is easier to read.

These are just some of the benefits of knowing English in Japan. Know others? We hope you leave it in the comments and share it with your friends. We recommend visiting our website learn words to study English.

Remembering that the tip of this article is in our book "Getting along in Japan" written by my friend Roberto Pedraça. You can download this book for free by entering your email in the field at the beginning of every article.

To finish, I will leave below some books and English courses in case you are interested in learning this mandatory language worldwide:

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