tokyodev forum

Finding a remote job in Japan to be with a partner in Japan?

I live in North America and I have a girlfriend who is living in a rural area of Japan. Fortunately, being a programmer gives me flexibilities to make my long-distance relationship work. I can get a remote job and live there with her for a few months at a time or I could get a job there in Tokyo. But ideally, I want to have a permanent job in her area and be with her side at all times. I could probably get married to her, but it’s probably a few years away until we are ready financially. Is it a possibility to find a remote job based in Japan and live with her while on a work visa? Has there been enough precedence of that Or is it rare? If you also have any other viable solutions, I will also really appreciate that. Thank you.

I’m not much experienced at this topic, but I think if company sponsored your visa they will expect you to come work to their office locally. They would be quite surprised if you’ll ask them to get a working visa and continue to work remotely (even from Japan). In that case why they would bother about getting you a visa in the first place?

I understand your point. But from my POV the best for you is to get work at Japan company first and move there, then your GF can move to you (and optionally find a job). If this is an option for her, I think this is an optimal solution…

With COVID, many companies have moved to working at least partially remotely. Some bigger companies, like PayPay have already announced that they plan on allowing remote work forever. So if you were to get a job with a company that has adopted remote work, you could live wherever you wanted (within Japan, it still seems they want people to live here).

The other thing to consider is that if you live in Tokyo, it is relatively easy to get anywhere in the country. So for instance, you could live in the city, and on weekends go to visit her. That’s obviously not ideal, but surely easier than visiting from North America.

To answer Tyoma’s interrogation first, companies still wants to give a working visa even if the employee is working remotely, but within Japan. Most companies don’t have entities in several countries and thus can’t hire remotely+internationally. those resources becomes contractors, not employee.

if you love your girlfriend, you don’t need to wait to be “financially ready” to get married. just skip the big ceremony no one needs and get the paperwork done. you can get a spouse visa pretty fast after your union is officially recognized.

in my case, we got married in Canada, never in Japan.
but we did the necessary paperwork for our wedding union to be recognized in Japan.
if you make a kid to a Japanese without being married, your kid is not yours. her father is the head of the family. you are a stranger.

I work remotely in Japan under a spouse visa.

thank you