Japan is the snowiest place on Earth and they’re looking for ski instructors next season. That’s a good combo for you.
Last Thursday, Japanese officials announced that the Japanese government is planning on easing visa requirements for foreign ski instructors by March 2016 to deal with a surge in foreign skiers and riders visiting Japanese ski resorts.
Currently visa requirements require at least 3 years of relevant experience to qualify for a ski instructor position. Japanese officials are planning on easing that requirement and allowing for other forms of experience (ie coaching skills, international certifications) to qualify into that 3 year requirement.
A Japanese Tourism Agency official stated that Japan’s most prominent ski resorts are asking for a greater number of foreign instructors to deal with the addition tourists seeking lessons.
Foreign skier visits have gone up rapidly in the past few years due to a weakening yen, horrible winters in Europe and North America, and the leaked secret of Japow. Officials are reporting that this rise in foreign skier visits in Japan especially in Hokkaido and the Nagano Prefecture has highlighted the need for non-Japanese instructors who can communicate (speak English) to foreign tourists.
The number of foreign visitors to Japan hit a record in 2014 at 13.41 million. That’s 29.4% up from the previous year.
This visa relaxation for ski instructors is expected to be a part of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s growth strategy, which may be approved by the Japanese Cabinet as early as this month.
If you’re a ski instructor and you’re thinking of working in Japan, all we can say is:
“Do it. You’l never regret getting sick of faceshots…”