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This is how we (sushi) roll

Details on your internship in Japan

You are ready for an adventure!

An internship in Japan is not only about work experience. You will be surprised how fun it is to step outside of your comfort zone and explore a new culture, make new friends, travel and discover your new favorite food. However, we understand this might be nerve-wracking. Luckily our skilled team has experience what you are about to experience so you can be confident that you’re in the best hands! You will be given support from A to Z(entern) whenever needed.

With that being said, there is no pressure if you prefer experiencing Japan by yourself, just give us a shout if you need anything.

Mark & Luke at their internship in Tokyo
Meet Mark and Luke with the team during their robotics internship in Tokyo.

It's your internship and your experience

You know yourself better than anyone else so share with us your ideal internship placement. We are here to guide you in the right direction. No idea what's out there? Let our team of experts assist you making the right choice.

Choose your company

"Check out company A or actually, company B might fit a bit better!" Depending on your internship field, you will be offered a selection to choose from. Like them all? Let's set up interviews and see what option fits you best.

Choose your location

We have internships in Tokyo, Osaka, Fukuoka, Kyoto, Yokohama, Sapporo, Okinawa, Matsumoto and actually nationwide! While Tokyo is the main hub for internships followed by Osaka, let us know where you would like to have your internship experience!

No Japanese needed

That's right! Even in Japan you will get around with no-Japanese. Most of our companies do not require any Japanese language level.

Or practice your Japanese

Internships are the best way to practice your Japanese. You have the opportunity to talk outside of the classroom and pick-up some keigo (honorific language) on your way!

Specials & Extra Support

Once a Zentern, always a Zentern! Welcome to the family. For returning Zenterns we have special prices as well as discounts for anyone applying with a friend or referring a friend.
Our services are fully customizable. Thinking of brining your dog? We help find a proper place (and a pet-sitter if needed). Dietary restrictions? We can help with grocery shopping. Want to go into a language school first? Allow us to suggest the best. Just let us know if there is anything we can help with.

A preview of available internships in Japan

Internship Question

Do you guarantee I’ll get an offer?

Yes! How’s this for the shortest answer on our website?

Will I get paid for my intern work?

Depends on the internship. Usually not, but Zentern makes sure that commuting and lunch expenses are covered at most internships..

why do i have to pay for an internship?

Other than it’s an investment in your personal and professional development, we use our deep industry connections to land you a top-drawer placement, offer best-in-breed career mentorship and an unforgettable cultural experience, all while keeping you stress-free with our comprehensive living support program.

what are the intake dates?

Intake dates? We don’t have any! You can start anytime you like but for your first day, it’s usually a Monday. 

What industries do you cover?

All industries and sectors. (Except medical / health-related internships.)

How long is my internship?

You can stay for up to 24 weeks. Need more? Time to confess you’re hooked on Japan and let us help you get hired permanently..

Why isn't there a list of all the available internships zentern has?

In general, internships depend on your skill set, preferred starting date and length of stay. But many companies actually create internship positions when we present them with superstars like you, while others like to stay under the radar about their talent development strategies. So what you see on the site are just representative examples of the endless opportunities out there. Give us a shout and we’ll give you the full skinny.

what kind of companies can i intern for?

What kind can’t you intern for would be an easier question. With everything from nationals to multi-nationals, maverick market disruptors to 1000-year-old rice wine breweries, Japan boasts as much employment diversity as a Moroccan bazaar. We encourage you to get happily lost in all the choices.

where are the internships located?

Mostly Tokyo, because in and around the capital is where 60% of national and 75% of foreign businesses are based. You may also land in Osaka or another big city. We hope you’ll explore the countryside on weekends, but not waking to a rooster crowing at dawn every day will do wonders for your jet-lag and sanity.

do i need insurance?

Yes. And this isn’t optional, because we need a copy so the 8 million Shinto deities continue smiling down on Zentern for all eternity. Probably the least hassle and cheapest way is just to get a rider on your current policy.

do i need to know any japanese?

None? A ton? It all depends on you and the company you work for. There’s no better way to understand the culture than to learn the language, but if the very thought of that curls your toenails, we’ll make sure to place you in a cozy almost-everyone-speaks-English environment.

what happens after my internship?

Up to you. If you want to stick around and explore the country until your visa expires, go for it. We’ll even offer some travel recommendations if you like, but legally you’re on your own. (Sorry. Had to say it. Our lawyers are watching.)


Where will i live?

Whether you prefer regal or roughing it, we’ll find you conveniently located accommodations to suit your budget and taste, from fully furnished apartments to share houses to home-stays. Rent starts at $600 USD a month in Tokyo – usually less in other cities.

Houses available for and with: Women-only, gym, theatre room, library or yoga space.

Who will my roommates be?

No one, if you’d rather live alone. But the opportunity to do a house-share or home-stay is probably the biggest side benefit of being a Zentern. If you’re thinking about an international career, now’s your chance to start building your global network. And while your roommates may be determined in part by geographics and timing, we promise only cool peeps. There’s no such thing as a Zenjerk.

How far will my place be from work?

Up to your budget, availability and preferences. We have places where it takes just 10-minutes or 40-minutes. However, we always try to find something within 30-min of commute. 


Are credit cards accepted everywhere?

Yes, in supermarkets, convenience stores and most restaurants. That being said, Japan is still a cash-based country so make sure you have some cash on you on a daily basis.

Do I need to create a bank account?

Luckily no need! Most Japanese major banks allow foreign cards. Make sure to let your bank know you’ll be in Japan for some while, some banks block cards automatically as protection if they notice a sudden overseas withdrawal.

What is the legal age in Japan?

The legal age is 20. Interns under 20 years old are not allowed to purchase cigarettes, alcohol or enter clubs.

Do I need to eat sushi everyday?

You can if you want to, but Japan is international foodie heaven, a veritable taste bud kaleidoscope, so get out there and dig in. Even the cheapest rice bowls are delicious, but we also have more Michelin 3-star restaurants than France (who, uh, you know, invented the whole Michelin star system).

How safe is japan?

Japan’s ranked #9 on the Global Peace Index.

Street crime: zero. Organized crime: irrelevant unless you happen to own a pachinko parlor and are late paying your monthly protection fee to the guy with 9.5 fingers. Forget your camera on an outdoor café table? It’ll be there waiting when you get back. Sure, stuff happens, but this is still the safest country on earth.

Is there Wi-Fi in public places?

Yes. Just as in the US and Europe, Japan’s major metropolitan areas all boast ever-expanding hotspot networks. The public transit system, fast food and café chains, as well as major department and convenience stores almost all offer free WiFi with easy English log on. So, no worries: when you want instantly to share the selfie you just took with passing cosplay maidens in Odaiba, a network is probably just a few steps away. Click on the links below for Tokyo’s comprehensive hotspot guide and Osaka’s WiFi network homepage.