If you’re a native speaker of English, Chinese or Korean, Japan’s tourism agency may have a job for you. The agency is seeking 100 English-speaking, Chinese-speaking and Korean-speaking tourists who will travel through Japan and rate if certain amenities are “tourist-friendly” or not.
While in Japan, the 100 lucky travelers will have all expenses paid, though they’ll have to complete surveys to help officials learn how to better serve tourists not just in Tokyo or Disney’s property in Chiba prefecture, but throughout the entire country. The new initiative is one that Reuters says will hopefully improve the transportation and restaurant interactions in multiple languages. English speakers have it easiest, but the tourism officials estimate that Chinese and Korean tourists could increase this year to record highs.
Here’s the problem: if you’re looking for a cheaper way to experience Japan, it’s hard to find out how they’ll be selecting travelers. There’s no information on the government agency’s English language website, and some officials told Reuters that they might ask relatives of students or foreigners already working in the country.
It might be tough to find a slot, but traveling on the dime of the government is a way of frugal vacationing. Another option using Japanese government resources is the JET program, which is a paid English teaching program that includes airfare and a decent salary.