Teaching English in Japan – What to Expect

The economic boom that swept Japan in the 1980′s brought with it not only a period of wealth and prosperity, but also a sudden surge in a desire to study English. Fueled in part by Japan’s role as an emerging economic force, the need to learn English became a necessity for many companies hoping to compete in the global marketplace. As a result of the affluence during this time more Japanese were also able to travel abroad, thus creating a demand for studying English for those who hoped to hone their English skills before making the journey to a foreign country. Entrepreneurs sensing an opportunity to capitalize on this trend began to open English schools in unprecedented numbers, from large Corporate chains that catered to thousands of students, to small neighborhood schools often employing only a handful of staff. Although the glory days of finding a teaching job on the basis of being a native English speaker alone have faded, the good news is there are still many teaching jobs available in Japan for those willing to make a modest effort to pursue them. Renewed economic growth in the last few years in conjunction with a recent ruling by the Japanese Ministry of Education to include English as part of the elementary school curriculum will also create a need for English instructors in the future.

English teachers in Japan fall basically under two categories, those employed via structured programs such as JET (Japan Exchange and Teaching), and freelance instructors. Teachers who have come to Japan under one of the structured programs can expect benefits which include pre-departure training, visas, flights, living accommodations, and health insurance. Free lance teachers are individuals who arrive in Japan looking for work on their own or who have found a job prior to arriving. In regard to working conditions both can expect to teach approximately 20-35 classes per week, with lessons spanning 50 minutes to one hour in duration. Most teaching positions are at private language schools, with the majority of classes being conducted in the afternoons and evenings. Students range from elementary school, high school, and university students, to housewives and businessmen of all ages. Many of the afternoon classes are typically made up of children who study English after their regular school day has finished, and the majority of evening classes are attended by teens or adults. Size of classes vary, but on average consist of 3-5 students for many of the smaller schools, and up to 15 for larger establishments. Most schools also offer students private lessons.

Entry level salaries for teachers is approximately 250,000 yen per month, though this can fluctuate depending on the company. Some of the larger chain schools such as Nova and ECC offer visa sponsorship and other benefits, such as arranging an apartment for newly arrived teachers. Most schools also subsidize daily train transportation costs. Teachers with experience and a post graduate level qualification in the form of a Masters Degree can expect to make around 400,000 yen a month or more, with the majority of high paying jobs in this category to be found in the High Schools and Universities.

Dubai Weather – What You Should Know Before Traveling to Dubai

Dubai weather can be summed up in one word: "hot". It should come as no surprise though: Dubai is situated right at the edge of the middle east over a vast expanse of desert. Its abundance to the sea does not help the weather at all and only adds to the already excruciating humidity. In this article, we will explore Dubai weather and tell you which seasons are the best to visit Dubai.

For visitors coming in from colder climates, the best time to come to Dubai is between November and March, when it is the so called "winter" season here. During this season, the days are sunny and warm. In fact, most people end up falling absolutely in love with the Dubai weather during this season – there's plenty of sunlight, ample sand, and it seldom becomes unbearably hot. In terms of absolute temperature, it hovers around 23-25 ​​degrees Celsius during this time – a quite agreeable temperature for most people. The nights, however, are much cooler, bordering on chilly.

The summers are when the Dubai heat truly shows its colors. Temperatures routinely soar above 40 degrees (Celsius). The further you travel away from the sea, the hotter it becomes. The interior parts of Dubai are absolutely unbearable during the summers. If Dubai were not such a modern, air-conditioned city, it would've looked like a ghost town in the summers.

Of course, summer in Dubai does not mean that you have the luxury of walking around in shorts and spaghetti tops. Remember that Dubai, despite being a very modern city, is still very conservative. When you are here, please respect the local culture by dressing up more modestly, even in the summers.

Whether you are traveling to Dubai in the summers or the winters, you must take care to avoid a heatstroke or a sunburn. Keep yourself hydrated at all times and wear a strong sunscreen whenever you go out. If possible, avoid going out in the daytime.

The perks of visiting Dubai in the summer are cheaper rates at all hotels and resorts. This is the off-peak season and you will find some great deals everywhere. If you are a cost conscious traveler who can bear the heat, the summer might be a good time to visit this city-state.

Finally, remember that Dubai is air-conditioned almost everywhere. The people here like to turn up the air-conditioning. A traveler unaccustomed to the air-conditioning here can easily catch a cold. Therefore, always carry a jacket or sweatshirt with you, particularly if you are going to be inside an enclosed, air-conditioned space for a long time.

A Holiday in Turkey – Is it the New Spain?

Some four hundred thousand Brits now own holiday homes abroad, Spain has been the most popular of destinations over the past twenty years; it has however become very expensive and more than a little over developed in recent years.

As a consequence many have begun to look elsewhere for their ´place in the sun´. Turkey has seen a huge rise in interest both as a holiday destination and a place to invest in property, people who were astute enough to recognize it as a potential ´hotspot´ as little as eight years ago could have seen their property increase in value by as much as 500% in that time; and whilst Turkey too has seen a decline in demand during 2009, property values have not dropped in the more desirable Mediterranean resorts, (one such resort being Kalkan) to the degree they have in the likes of Spain.

The possibility of Turkey´s acceptance to the European Union has also fuelled speculation in the property market there, whether they will ever achieve acceptance (or indeed actually want to) is yet to be seen. This is the account of how I became one of those ´Brits abroad´: -

I first went to Turkey, rather reluctantly, I might add, on holiday in 2000, and was very pleasantly surprised at how green the country was, I had expected to find a dusty arid country, how wrong I was! I was also very pleasantly surprised at how warm and welcoming the Turkish people were; having holidayed in Greece for some years I had always believed the Greeks would be difficult to beat in their hospitality, the Turks did just that.

My wife and I returned some five years later, having booked a holiday in a very swish hotel on the Dalyan delta, we were disappointed six weeks before being due to depart, to be told by the holiday company that we could not go there as the hotel was having work done and that they, the holiday company, would not allow their guests to have what was not the perfect holiday experience. They told us to choose something else from the brochure and regardless of cost they would honour the price we had paid and even refund us if there was a difference. My wife had seen Kalkan but dismissed it due to the transfer time from the airport feeling that it would be too long, however, given the situation we decided that we would endure the two hour transfer (it turned out to be one and a half). We chose a villa holiday instead of a hotel and hit the jackpot!

Kalkan, we decided very quickly was an idyllic place to holiday and whilst walking down one of the narrow cobbled streets one evening to enjoy a pre-dinner drink stopped to look in an estate agents window (as I´m sure many of you have), before I knew it we were making an appointment with the agent to view some properties the following evening. Meeting that particular agent was yet another amazing stroke of luck, he was a charming intelligent man who´s English was impeccable.

The following evening arrived and I have to say that I personally was not too enthusiastic, as I believed that I was wasting valuable time, I never actually expected to be buying a house. The agent who we learned was called Kemal met us at the appointed time and took us to view the first property, which he had chosen as a possibility. It was an imposing four bedroom detached property with magnificent sea views and a swimming pool; it was newly built and was being marketed at £140,000. It was without doubt a lot of house for the money, however, there was an apartment block right along side it with twelve balconies all of which looked over the swimming pool, a serious privacy issue which immediately ruled that one out.

As we drove away from that villa Kemal asked, “what are you looking for, do you want detached?” I rather facetiously said ´of course´ (remember I had little or no intention of buying) “do you want a swimming pool?” ´ Well obviously!´ He then took us to another newly built in fact not completely finished villa, at what point my attitude changed I cannot actually say, I just knew it was going to happen! This villa again was a four bedroom detached with pool and panoramic views over the bay and astonishingly £15,000 cheaper! We left Kemal that evening feeling like excited school children, a couple of days later and a couple of telephone calls back to the UK to our bank manager and we were signing on the dotted line!

From thereon Kemal did everything we gave him power of attorney (not an easy decision to make with someone you have only just met) and he completed the deal, we became the proud owners of our own piece of paradise seven months later. The piece of paradise is called Villa Katmar, a vaguely Turkish sounding word? No just a combination of parts of our names.

Becoming a property owner in Turkey for us was a very easy and stress free experience, however, a WORD OF WARNING, not everyone we know had such an easy transition into becoming a Turkish villa owner! As in any country it depends very much on the people you deal with and applying a little common sense! I have to say we were very fortunate to have had that almost accidental meeting with Kemal; it could have been a very different tale had we done ´business´ with someone else.

If you are contemplating buying in Turkey then I would urge you to consider Kalkan and if you do then again I would have no hesitation in recommending Kemal Safyurek of Mavi Estates.

Honeymoon Vacation Packages

Newlywed couples derive immense thrill from honeymoons in exotic destinations. Honeymoon vacations give them an opportunity to spend intimate time together far from the world of anxieties and worries. Hotels and resorts in renowned and much-sought-after honeymoon destinations offer special honeymoon vacation packages to their prospective clients. The packages ensure a hassle-free time of comfort and leisure for honeymoon couples who do not have to take pains to arrange for different services, since they are generally included in honeymoon vacation packages.

A typical honeymoon vacation package in the enchanting island of Hawaii begins at $510 per night for a honeymoon couple. This exclusive package includes a premium ocean-view room, convertible rental car, a chilled bottle of champagne upon arrival, a daily breakfast buffet for two, and dinner for two one time during your stay ($100 value)

If couples are contemplating a honeymoon vacation in San Francisco, rates start at $245/night for a club level room, and from $315/night for a club level suite, and include a club level room or suite, champagne upon arrival, complimentary continental breakfast buffet in club level lounge, handmade chocolates at turndown, and special bath amenities.

Las Vegas is one of the favorite destinations for honeymoon vacationers, and most of the renowned hotels and resorts in Las Vegas promote premium and economical honeymoon packages.

Las Vegas hotels offer a great deal more than just betting activities to couples spending their honeymoon holidays in the enchanting tourist locale. Most of the resorts are known for their characteristic appeal and elegant swimming pools, shopping, health spas, nightclubs, restaurants, and other amusements.