Lesson Transcript

Hi everyone! In this video, weโ€™re going to talk about everyday culture in Japan. Specifically, we're going to talk about the cost of living in Tokyo, Japan. When you imagine Tokyo, you might think of the bright light and fast pace of the big city. Tokyo is Japan's hub and it's the largest city in the country. Tourists visit year-round and it has the largest job market in Japan, but how much does it actually cost to live here? In this video, we're going to look at the actual cost of living for Tokyo.
Let's start with the most basic cost of living that you need for Tokyo, rent. What's it like to live in an apartment in Tokyo? Generally, apartments in Tokyo range in size from small to smaller. It's pretty easy to find a tiny apartment which is about 8 m.sq. (or 86 sq.ft.). This is typical for small apartments and usually consist of a room with a small bathroom attached. If, however, you want a separate sleeping room, you'll need to pay a bit more money though for not a whole lot more space. A smaller apartment outside the city center costs about 76,000 yen, or about 750 US dollars. But keep in mind that these apartments are not located in city centers like Shibuya or Akihabara. If you want to live in Tokyo, you need to get used to paying a lot more for a smaller place to live. Heat, electricity, and water require a separate payment; for an average family size apartment about 85 meters, you can expect to pay about 19,000 yen (or about 200 USD) per month for a basic utilities package. Keep in mind that this amount does not include internet or cell phone cost.
One of the great things about living in Tokyo is how convenient everything is, if you walk down the street you can quickly find used bookstores, coffee shops, convenience stores, and more. Because of this, people typically don't have car, as it's really expensive to maintain one. Instead, people typically use the subway, trains, or buses. For monthly transit pass, you can expect to pay 10,000 yen, which is about 100 US dollars. Office workers also might have commuter passes, these are typically covered by their companies, these cover the cost of traveling to and from work and can be used on the weekends as well. So if your commuter pass cover some place cool then that's lucky for you. Of course, if you need to take a quick car ride somewhere, taxi starts from about $4.
Tokyo is well known for its wide variety of delicious restaurants, it has world-famous dishes out of a variety of price ranges too; from festival food to expensive sushi dinners, you can try just about anything here. Because of this, it's a little bit difficult to determine the average cost of a meal in Tokyo. But for one person, you can expect to pay about $10 in an inexpensive restaurant.
Tokyo is full of culture and excitement, popular activities include attending festivals and firework shows, visiting Japanese-style pubs called Izakaya, and going to karaoke. Attendance is free at fireworks and festival, so generally these are very popular activities in summer. Visiting izakayas with your friends is popular year-round, and it's common to go to karaoke afterwards. In Tokyo, the average cost of a beer is around 500 yen but there are lots of different specials and discounts which you can find, so it really depends on the restaurant you go to. For karaoke, you can expect to pay around 300 yen for half an hour.
With so many different things to do, you don't have to worry about blowing your entire budget. There are lots of different ways to determine the cost of living but these are couple of important aspects of life in Tokyo.
So, how does Tokyo compare to big cities in your country? What's different? And what else do you want to know about Japanese culture? Let us know in the comments. See you next time, bye!

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February 14th, 2020 at 06:30 PM
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