University cities – Tokyo, Japan

Japan by itself is a country well known for its universities, most of which are well above par. Over the years the country has been attracting students from all parts of the world and the population of international students has been on the up and up. The last available data from the statistics department showed that the country had over 267,000 international students in 2017. Today this number is estimated to be close to 300,000.

In this article we shall cover Tokyo which is the most populous metropolitan area in the world having more than 38 million individuals.

Useful Information


When you study in Tokyo you pay tuition fees, the same as the Japanese nationals and it comes to a little under 5,500 US$, per year. In addition there is an admission fee of approximately 2,600 US$. Both the figures are at the current rate of exchange with the Japanese Yen.

Residency Card

This is a document issued to all foreign students by the immigration department and you are required to carry it with you at all times.

Health Insurance

You must obtain health insurance immediately after you are awarded the residency permit. As a student you will pay 30 percent of medical expenses for most ailments.

Expenses and Accommodation

Tokyo is one of the most expensive cities in the world and you must budget for at least 2,000 US$ equivalent to meet your expenses towards subsistence, discretionary expenses and shared accommodation. If you’re lucky enough to be allotted space in a dormitory, you will likely save around 200 US$ equivalent. Most international students eventually share an apartment and those on a tight budget stay, two persons per room in those shared flats.The best course is to approach the support services at the university who will guide you through your options. One of the best ones from the student’s point of view is the social accommodations which comprise various facilities including sports and community rooms.


To avail of the discount of 50 percent as a student, it is recommended that you purchase the commuter pass at the metro ticket counter. For this you shall need your student card showing your residential address and the address of the college you are studying at and will be issued a student pass that would allow you to commute between the two nearest stations.

Crossing in Ginza district, TokyoEarn and Learn

Except for the current scenario in the world, international students who wish to support themselves through part time work usually earn around US$ 20 per hour. As a student you are permitted to work 28 hours a week and 40 hours during long holidays. The immigration department will issue you a work permit once you have received your residency permit.

Things to do

Outside of work, you will find plenty of things to do in Tokyo. For one thing the expat community gets together quickly enough and group outings are common. Those who are open minded and make friends with the locals often find themselves spending time with their friends at karaoke and shisha bars which are still popular.

List of Universities

As usual we would request you to visit the website of each of the universities to determine the courses most suited to you. Here are the top rated public universities.

The University of Tokyo
Official website

Tokyo Institute of Technology
Official website

Ochanomizu University
Official website (This is for women.)

Tokyo Medical and Dental University
Official website

Tokyo University of the Arts
Official website

National Graduate Institute of Policy Studies
Official website

Tokyo University of Marine Science and Technology
Official website

Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology
Official website

Photos: Shutterstock

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