What does Live Work Play Japan do?

With the experience of living in Japan for years, Martin and Charlie found out first hand that many expats in Japan and even more who wanted to come and work in Japan suffered from massive knowledge gaps in many crucial areas of Japanese society and work life. This lack of knowledge of what is actually very obscure information completely blocks many foreigners from being able to find work that they love and a lifestyle that is fun for them. So they leave Japan before they get a chance to learn what incredible opportunities there are here.

Our Mission

Martin and Charlie started this website to help people find success and a life that they love in Japan. So how do we define success in Japan?

Success in Life

We believe in having a great situation, with an awesome place to live, amazing food to eat (hey, it’s Japan) and no worries with your visa, taxes or insurance.

Success in Work

We want to help you get the skills you need to get the best jobs in Japan, with a great salary and enough time off so you can enjoy traveling in your vacation time.

Success in Your Free Time

Japan wouldn’t be any fun if you’re just working all the time, right? So we write informed articles on places to go and things to do that will help you form lifelong memories.

Who Are We?



I started my Japan journey a few years after graduating university, and moved to Japan without knowing any Japanese and only romanticised views of Japan.

I had grown up loving videogames, Studio Ghibli and the history of Japan, so when I landed I had so many expectations. I remember reading Hiragana tables on the plane thinking, “Am I really doing this?”

Very quickly on the ground I realised that there was a lot more to Japan than meets the eye. I started learning Japanese to a higher level and this helped me improve my jobs from eikaiwa, to an international school in Nagoya, then a world famous kindergarten in Tokyo.

After working in Japan for nearly 4 years, I decided that being a full-time teacher wasn’t enough for me – so I went part-time at my job, and found enough part-time jobs to stitch together and make as much as I was making last year, but only working 15-20 hours a week. The rest of the time I spend working on Live Work Play Japan and my other side businesses.

This gives me plenty of time to hang out with my friends, visit family around the world and take time off when I want to. I enjoy my lifestyle and learning about business and entrepreneurship in Tokyo.



I grew up wanting to go to Japan ever since I was a little kid. My dad often worked in Japan on business trips and this inspired me to want to learn more.

I went to Japan on a two-week exchange trip in middle school. Frustrated by the inability to speak with most of the people I met, I dreamed to learn Japanese. I didn’t get my chance until university many years later. After two years of study in the US, I received a full-ride scholarship from Japan’s MOFA (the JASSO) to go study abroad at a school in Saitama (north of Tokyo).

I began interpreting on a volunteer basis at the university in Japan. Later, I returned to the US and graduated, then moved back to Japan where I taught as a home-room kindergarten teacher in an English speaking international pre-school and kidergarten in Yokohama for a year. After that, I decided to pursue more opportunities to use Japanese.

I began freelance Japanese translation, eventually working as a real estate broker in Tokyo and after that an in-house translator and interpreter in an IT firm.

Currently, Martin works for himself as a full-time freelance Japanese to English translator.

What we are doing to help the expat community

Issues we have found foreigners facing are broad and include:

If you know anything (Japan related) that you think we can help with, feel free to email us at admin@liveworkplayjapan.com.

How we do Live Work Play Japan

We use WordPress for the framework and as a CMS for articles. I can see some programmers rolling their eyes – shush, it’s easier and I don’t have to build everything from scratch.

We use SiteGround for hosting and because of their incredible customer service and great pricing structure that scales with our audience levels. Would honestly recommend to anyone starting a website.

We use Divi Builder to make our pages look how we want them to look. It’s a great tool for WordPress users as their visual builder and constant support and updates are awesome.

We use ActiveCampaign for our email list, which lets us help and connect with our audience in a more personal way. They have a very robust service compared to mail servers we’ve used in the past.

More from Charlie and Martin

  • Business 30% 30%
  • Entrepreneurship 25% 25%
  • Psychology 45% 45%
  • Business Japanese 20% 20%
  • Culture 20% 20%
  • Language Learning 60% 60%

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