Majority of Japanese children recognise the necessity of foreign languages

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Do you want to go on an overseas holiday? graph of japanese statisticsThe social learning company Surala recently conducted a survey into school children’s opinions of overseas.

Demographics

Between the 1st and 20th of August 2015 480 children who used the Surala social learning service completed a survey offered after they logged into the Surala service. The sample was 55.6% male, 15.8% in primary school, 74.8% in middle school, and 9.4% in senior school.

Note that although the Surala service appears to be free to use, the sample is not going to be that representative of Japanese children overall, so care should be taken reading the results, especially, I think, the desire to learn and recognition of the necessity of foreign languages.
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Useful smartphone features for overseas travel

goo Ranking recently looked at when a smartphone would be handy overseas.

Demographics

Between the 8th and 8th of February 2012 just over 1,000 members of the goo Research online monitor group completed a private internet-based questionnaire. Unfortunately, the link to the demographics is broken, so I cannot report the numbers in any detail.

Fortunately open wifi is far more common overseas than in Japan, so a smartphone can be used without worrying about roaming charges. Having just come back from overseas, the most convenient features were being able to check my docomo email via wifi and posting photos to Google+.
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Canada is best place for Japanese

Overall, how satisfied were you with life in Canada? graph of japanese statisticsThis recent survey from goo Research into satisfaction with life overseas found satisfaction levels far higher than my stereotypes of Japanese abroad would suggest.

Demographics

Between the 26th and 28th of May 2010 892 people randomly selected from the members of the goo Research online monitor group who had had experience of living abroad completed a private internet-based questionnaire. 64.8% of the sample were female, 1.9% in their teens, 30.3% in their twenties, 34.3% in their thirties, 21.4% in their forties, 8.3% in their fifties, 3.4% in their sixties, and 0.4% aged seventy or older. However, what constituted living abroad, specifically a minimum time span, was not mentioned.

In Q1, I can understand people being satisfied at getting a larger home than their Japanese dwelling, especially those living abroad on the company’s dime. The overall conveniences perhaps raises an eyebrow, but a majority being satisfied with the food is a surprise. Conversely, 37.7% being uncommital regarding their relationships with their neighbours suggests that people didn’t mix that much.
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Foreign weekend breaks and longer holidays: part 2 of 2

[part 1][part 2]What is the actual realistic duration for a foreign holiday? graph of japanese statistics

A recent survey from Macromill Research looked at overseas holidays, both weekend breaks via the new Haneda international terminal and longer holidays.

Demographics

Between the 25th and 27th of August 2010 1,000 members of the Macromill monitor group resident in Tokyo or one of the three surrounding prefectures of Kanagawa, Chiba and Saitama and in full-time employment in either the public or private sectors completed a private internet-based questionnaire. The sample was split by sex exactly 50:50 in each of the age groups, with 25.0% in their twenties, 25.0% in their thirties, 25.0% in their forties, and 25.0% aged fifty or older.

I’m surprised by a number of the answers in Q4SQ10, as the typical image of a Japanese tourist is very much according to the Statement A, yet around half identified with the more adventurous holidaymaker. Perhaps there is a difference between what holidays the Japanese would like to take versus what holidays they actually do feel comfortable taking, as language and personal safety always features high in the lists of concerns when overseas.
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Foreign weekend breaks and longer holidays: part 1 of 2

[part 1][part 2]Do you currently want to take an overseas holiday? graph of japanese statistics

A recent survey from Macromill Research looked at overseas holidays, both weekend breaks via the new Haneda international terminal and longer holidays.

Demographics

Between the 25th and 27th of August 2010 1,000 members of the Macromill monitor group resident in Tokyo or one of the three surrounding prefectures of Kanagawa, Chiba and Saitama and in full-time employment in either the public or private sectors completed a private internet-based questionnaire. The sample was split by sex exactly 50:50 in each of the age groups, with 25.0% in their twenties, 25.0% in their thirties, 25.0% in their forties, and 25.0% aged fifty or older.

One reason that South Korea is so popular for a short break is that their currency is really cheap these days. I’d like to visit Seoul myself just to see what it’s like, but South Korean cooking looks even less veggie-friendly than Japanese, and I prefer my spicyness limited to curry only!
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Top twenty pricey perceptions of Japanese goods

Here’s an interesting survey from goo Ranking, looking at what people think that compared to overseas is far too expensive in Japan.

Demographics

Over the 23rd and 24th of August 2010 1,127 members of the goo Research online monitor group completed a private internet-based questionnaire. 57.3% of the sample were female, 11.7% in their teens, 16.5% in their twenties, 29.0% in their thirties, 23.2% in their forties, 10.9% in their fifties, and 8.7% aged sixty or older. Note that the score in the results refers to the relative number of votes for each option, not a percentage of the total sample.

With the recent appreciation in the yen, prices have got a bit closer, but looking at the list, number 1 is fair enough for city property, although land in the countryside is often ridiculously cheap. Homes are perhaps comparable in price, but certainly not comparable in terms of floor space or build quality! Pizzas are stupidly expensive, but I’m not really sure about US university fees, although compared to many places in Europe they are, as further education costs are heavily regulated or even non-existent. An hour on Japanese motorways costs about the same as a week-long or more carte for German, Swiss or Austrian motorways, but petrol is similar in price to Europe. Movies are expensive, although the concessions are cheaper and more importantly there’s no-one talking on phones, shining laser pointers or otherwise disrupting movies in Japan. My monthly minutes (30 minutes) for my mobile is about the same price as a plan with 500 minutes or more in the UK, and it costs me close to 100 yen to load just the specially-designed Japanese mobile-friendly home page on Twitter! Foreign brands are heavily marked-up, but personal tax (income and sales tax) in Japan is low, although the national insurance component has been slowly creeping up as of late.

The others I disagree with are tropical fruits – all fruits are expensive, and alcohol. The average pint in the pub or carry-out can of mainstream beer is more expensive that the west, but there’s always the all-you-can-drink option, and in supermarkets the own-brands of firewater – chu-hai fruity alcopops, gut-rot whisky and the two litre sake bottles – have a pretty good price/performance ratio.

Oh, and everyone seems to have forgotton rice, which is kept expensive by the government to keep small farmers farming.
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