Dating a Japanese girl is nothing like you’re used to.
Lucky for you, I am here to give you a full guide to it – with all the details, tips, and secrets!
Getting The Japanese Girl
Obviously, you have to meet girls in Japan if you want a Japanese girlfriend. There are three ways to go about this:
Increasingly popular. Japanese people are a shy bunch. They appreciate the comfort of dating without awkward face-to-face contact. Not to mention online dating is time efficient and Japan is crazy about efficiency.
Via Mutual Friends
Most couples in Japan meet in group settings. In my experience, women who date within their social circle will not be interested in foreigners. The ones that are open to international romance will also have some international friends. Hanging out with expats will help you meet a Japanese girl like that.
Via Day/Night Game
Exactly what it sounds like. Going out to the streets, a park, a club, whatever, and meeting a woman there. This works, as long as you speak Japanese or only stick to the gaijin bars.
Now let’s dissect these to help you get dream Japanese women in no time.
The Only 3 Dating Sites That Matter
Online dating is a booming industry. Japan has a serious demographic problem. So much so that Pairs, one of the leading dating apps, advertise by saying:
Japan is facing declining birthrates and aging population, and it is a social problem for the percentage of unmarried people to increase just because they think ‘there’s no opportunity to meet new people’ or ‘there’s no compatible partner out there.’
To solve this, Pairs will devote itself to spreading the concept of online dating, a much easier way to find and meet a compatible partner.
Why can’t Japanese people meet IRL? The same reason we can’t (or don’t) in the West:
- Working long hours means less time for dating
- Social media is taking over our friendships and we simply don’t go out as much
- Online dating feels safe, it’s not nearly as scary as going up to an actual person
Basically, we are all socially awkward and Internet dating is here to help with that. Except some Japanese people take social awkwardness and isolation to a whole new level.
- Did you know half a million Japanese young people have completely closed themselves off from society? They are called “hikikomori” and they spend their days isolated from the world, in the safety of their bedrooms. Their numbers are growing by the minute!
Anyway, that was beside the point. Japanese men are often bad at approaching women. Japanese girls are way too shy to make the first step. Online dating is here to save the day. Here are three sites that locals use AND you can, too.
(Other apps and platforms that only exist in Japanese are irrelevant for your search for a Japanese girl)
I recommend Japan Cupid because it’s specifically for international romance. They do have a small percentage of Japanese man with Jap girl couples. For the most part, however, Japan Cupid success stories come from Western men.
When you use a nice site, you get exactly what you pay for. The women on Japan Cupid are there to meet a Western man. Otherwise, they would not be on an international site. Since they already seek a foreign guy, they will speak English (at least some English, even if their pronunciation is not ideal). They will also be prepared for the stigma around dating a foreigner and for the cultural differences.
- Japan Cupid is a paid dating site.
- You have to cover a membership fee – either by month or by year.
- Obviously, the latter winds up much cheaper.
The way it works is you register, browse, and send messages for free. In order for the other person to see your messages, however, one of you has to be a paid member.
Some of the women are indeed paid members but they are the exception. Japan is still very conservative and men are expected to pay for most things.
This includes dating sites (but will extend into your relationship, obviously).
It’s not impossible to meet a cute Japanese girl on Tinder. A lot of them, especially in larger cities, will speak English. Making them more than a fling is another story.
For many Japanese families, there is a stigma around dating a foreigner. Many view us as intruders, coming to take away their daughters. Most foreigners in Japan work as English teachers. Hardly a well-paid job, if you ask Japanese parents. They are not happy giving away their daughter to a guy that can’t provide.
But even if you are Rockefeller himself, there will be other stereotypes. Are you just with her in passing? Will you actually settle down with their daughter? Will you pressure her to move away from her country and parents?
Finally, there is a simple fear of the unknown. Japanese people, as friendly and polite as they can be, are just as xenophobic as other nations. Some parents can’t accept their daughter dating a foreigner. Even if there is no good reason for it, they would give you dirty looks every time they see you.
Of course, all of this is an assumption, but some parents (and not a small number of them) are actually like that. That’s why some Japanese women would never seriously date a foreigner. A casual fling is one thing but her parents must never know.
Tinder girls tend to fall into this category quite often. Perhaps it’s because Tinder is a hookup app after all. Or maybe, just maybe, it’s because some women want to have their cake and eat it, too. Which, I mean, they can… But don’t expect them to become your girlfriend or anything. Hookups are a topic for another article, this one is on relationships.
Basically, Tinder is huge in Japan but doesn’t work very well for finding a girlfriend.
It’s free and it doesn’t take more than 3 minutes to sign up, though.
Give it a shot, it might surprise you.
Yup, this is the same app that promoted themselves as (essentially) the solution to the demographic crisis. A blend between Tinder and Japan Cupid, Pairs is a paid dating service that you mostly use on mobile. Guys pay, to be completely honest, girls do not.
Pairs is growing in membership and it’s actually a great option for expats. Much like Japan Cupid, having a membership fee allows them to police the platform better. As a result, Pairs is one of the safest online dating locations. Not just in Japan, in general.
The downside here is simple: not a lot of English speakers. Since Pairs is geared towards locals, there are not a lot of gaijin (foreigner) daters on the site. Thanks to the huge membership base this is slowly changing. Still, it will be a while before they become completely foreigner-friendly.
Meeting Her IRL
Every Japanese girl dreams of a romance.
They don’t view online dating as particularly romantic. But, I mean, hey, since the local guys aren’t giving them the rom-com experience, might as well look.
Anyway, meeting a Japanese girl in real life can be very simple. Even if you are completely new to a city, you can check out the local foreigner bars. Looking Western will help you a lot.
Others are simply curious (and looking for somebody to practice their English on).
Don’t get too cocky when you notice women are approaching you.
If you are visibly not Japanese, girls will come up to you and chat you up from time to time. It’s not necessarily flirting. Japan is so homogenous that foreigners are truly rare. Under 2% of the total population comes from another ethnicity. Even in big cities like Tokio and Osaka, you’ll be the only foreigner on the train (outside of tourist areas).
I know of a few expats that met their wives this way.
Another English-related option is language exchange events. You go to these things to practice a language that you are learning on native speakers. In exchange, you have to speak your native language to them. Japanese-English is a fairly common combo in these events. Just check for any of them in your area and show up. You will pick up some Japanese and, hopefully, also some Japanese girls (lame pun, I am sorry).
Dating A Japanese Girl: The Honeymoon Stage
Universally accepted as the best part of a relationship, your first few months with a Japanese girl can be a bit of a culture shock. After all, the Japanese way is as far away from Western culture as it gets. Well, some things are not.
First things, first:
You pay on dates.
It doesn’t just go for the first date. It’s for every breakfast, lunch, or dinner you have within the first months. At some point, she will offer to pay… But that point is not coming up as soon as you expect.
You are the man, you should pay.
Japan may seem modern but gender roles are like the US in the ’50s. Well, except for women in the workforce but still.
You pay for stuff.
She cooks, cleans, and takes care of the children.
And I know what you are thinking. Children? I thought we were still in the early stages of a relationship. Japanese girls move fast. It’s not that easy for them to find a boyfriend (locals are socially awkward, no time for dating, demanding careers, etc.) If they do, you better bet they are planning a future with him.
Does that freak you out?
Suck it up.
Japanese women make great girlfriends. They are caring, considerate, and don’t have the tendency of letting themselves go. She is staying the same size she was when you first met her.
But I am getting ahead of myself. We are talking early dating stages. And what is earlier than the literal first date?
Dating A Japanese Girl: How To Ace The First Date
There is a lot of pressure during a first date in Japan. Usually, my tip would be: don’t take yourself too seriously, this is just to get to know each other. While this holds true, Japanese women expect a little more from the first date. They are sizing you up to see if you fit their dating standards. And, of course, they will also be putting their best face forward.
The obvious first date tips matter. Shower and groom yourself well. The opposite sex does not enjoy your body odour. Dress to impress because your date will do the same.
Japanese people care a lot about status. The world has to see how wealthy/hard-working/successful you are. If they don’t, does it even matter? Yes, this is one of the uglier sides of Japanese culture.
Under no circumstances are you allowed to be late. Western women tend to be fashionably late to their dates. Not in Japan. The girl will show up on time and so should you. Arriving late makes a very bad impression. It’s not just because you are wasting her time. Japanese girls are very good at jumping to conclusions. If you were late, it must mean you were not as excited about the date as she was.
I know this is not the case and you’re just bad with time. If you think she will understand, though, you are sorely mistaken.
First Date Locations And Ideas
Don’t ask her to choose. You are expected to take the lead. Just pick something and don’t worry too much about impressing her. Instead, try to think about what conversation you can have. Coffee dates are nice and casual but what if you have nothing to talk about?
Japanese girls are shy. They will take some time to feel comfortable around you. While they do, keeping the conversation going can prove to be a huge challenge.
This is why you choose a place that gives you conversation prompts. If you’re strapped for ideas, ask her to go sightseeing with you. For instance, in Osaka (or more like… near Osaka) you have the Minoo Park. It’s a large national park with plenty of secluded spots but also a lot to see and do. Taking your date there will be both romantic and smart because it gives you stuff to talk about.
You might think consent is just for sex.
Japanese people have a larger personal space bubble. Couples, in general, are not very physically affectionate. Hand-holding is rare, sitting in your lap is virtually taboo. In the light of these…
It makes sense that she has different boundaries around intimacy.
The first kiss does not always come on the first date. Depending on the girl, it might take a couple of dates and a couple of drinks until she kisses you. Of course, alcohol changes everything. If you’ve ever hooked up with a Jap girl in a disco you know how she practically jumps on you. In all other scenarios, ask for permission first.
Three Date Rule?
If it’s that hard to get a kiss, how hard must it be to get laid? Actually, a lot easier than expected.
Japan has no problem with casual sex. The adult film industry is booming. Fetishes are embraced. Does that sound like a place where women hold off sex?
While the first date and first kiss can be awkward, sex comes faster than you expect. Japanese girls don’t have that much experience, though. Their country constantly ranks low in ‘who has the most sex’ research.
If you want to get laid faster, create physical comfort from the start. The lingering touches we use in the West may be too much but gently and slowly start getting closer.
The whole personal space bubble is an illusion. It’s more like an ellipsoid. If you are close to her from the side, she wouldn’t feel nearly as uncomfortable. In the duration of your date, aim to shorten the distance between you.
Chances are, as soon as you kiss you will be on your way to the bedroom. Japanese women go from 0 to 100 really quick.
Moving In Together
This is the next big step for a couple. Prepare to be pampered. Your Japanese girl will do all the housework. This includes cooking, cleaning, beautifying your space, etc. For more physically demanding tasks, she might ask for help but more often than not…
She will say nothing!
So far this is the biggest downside to dating a Japanese girl. She expects you to know what she wants and needs. A friend of mine made a decent point about that recently:
Of course my boyfriend should know! If he truly cares about me, he would notice that I am struggling with the bags of groceries. It’s the gentlemanly thing to do. Besides, it’s always better to receive an unexpected gift than to ask for it. The same goes for favours.
Honestly, she has point but this is super unhealthy. Be prepared for some misunderstandings and fights over them. It’s not avoidable.
Fortunately, Japanese politeness extends to fights with your partner, too. Even the language is set up in a more polite way than English. There aren’t any ridiculously explicit curse words or ugly offensive phrases. For the most part, your fights will end with some pouting and you apologizing for not reading minds. Over time you will learn to actually read her mind and this will be behind you.
No, but jokes aside, it’s actually pretty great to live with a Japanese girl. She will take full care of you. Delicious homemade food? Fresh sheets? Scented candles in the bathroom? Ok, that last one was probably her creature comfort but still.
Wedding Bells, Kids, Meeting Her Family
When things get serious with a Japanese girl, they get really serious very fast. Some women marry within months of meeting their partner. As wives, they are as traditional as they come.
Japanese women are not interested in being working moms. Honestly, who would blame them? The working shifts end at 11 PM. She would like to see her kids grow, thank you very much.
Sadly, the same is not true for you. As a husband, you will be expected to provide well for your family. This means becoming the sole breadwinner and it’s the reason why Japanese girls only want to date financially stable men. If you can’t take care of your family, are you even worth dating?
Another aspect of marriage to a Japanese woman is her own family. Even if they had their reservations about you, once you are married, you’re family. Of course, don’t expect her dad to become your best friend. Japanese dads, like most dads, are very protective and often quite jealous of their daughters’ partners. Her mom, on the other hand… Well, Jap moms usually adore their sons-in-law. Must be something to do with the fact that you saved her daughter from ending up as a spinster. Or maybe I’m a bit too cynical.
Anyway, long-term relationships and marriage to a Japanese woman are pretty great overall. She will fully take care of you and your children. You can rely on your girlfriend/wife to be 100% on your side. Loyalty is a big deal to Japanese people. Also, it’s just nice to know that you have a partner in crime, of sorts. That is what marriage should be about!
Dating A Japanese Girl: Recap
A quick overview if you missed something:
Meet A Japanese Girl
You can do it through online dating. It’s easy and convenient. Japan Cupid is for international romance, while Tinder caters more to the casual dating crowd.
IRL, language exchange events are your best friend. You could also try and chat up a girl on the street or at the club. In that case, you’ll need some Japanese skills or a lot of alcohol and luck.
Take her on an interesting first date. This way you will have an easy topic to discuss together. Avoid excessive physical contact, her boundaries are different. Always ask for consent. If you’d like to get laid sooner, focus on creating comfort around intimacy.
Learn to read her nonverbal cues. Often Japanese women expect you to know what they want. A lot of your early fights will be about that.
When you move in together, you’ll be expected to provide for the family. In turn, she will take care of the home. The attitude of her family toward you will warm up, though you might never win her dad over.
Enjoy dating Japanese girl! Remember to share your thoughts and experiences in the comments below.
See you in Tokyo,