Japanese Dating Culture: The Dos and Don’ts of Dating in Japan
Knowing how to interact with people from other countries appropriately is of particular importance, especially regarding dating.
In this blog post, we aim to explore the dos and don’ts of dating in Japan and provide insight into the unique nuances of the Japanese dating culture.
Despite its highly advanced technological infrastructure, Japan is still a traditional society with a deep reverence for its cultural and social norms.
The Japanese dating culture is built on a foundation of respect and curiosity. Still, it can be difficult for unfamiliar outsiders to navigate.
Therefore, we’ll provide helpful advice on correctly approaching Japan’s dating culture.
What Is the Dating Culture Like in Japan?
In Japan, the dating culture is vastly different than what you may be used to. For starters, most Japanese people still prefer in-person dating instead of online dating.
And even if they use online dating, it’s usually to scope out potential candidates.
Konkatsu is another term that you’ll often hear in Japanese dating culture. Konkatsu is the act of actively dating to get married. It’s considered a more serious endeavor than just casually dating.
Those participating in konkatsu are usually quite serious about finding their match.
Japanese dating culture is quite conservative when compared to other countries.
People usually only engage in physical contact once in a serious relationship. Even then, it’s typically not very intimate.
What Are the Dos of Dating in Japan?
As a foreigner in Japan, one of the most important things to understand is the dating culture.
And while every country has its quirks, a few general do’s and don’t apply universally.
For starters, Konkatsu is enormous in Japan. So if you’re actively seeking a marriage partner, you’re in the right place.
But even if you’re not interested in finding The One, it’s essential to be open and respectful of this cultural norm.
What is Konkatsu? Konkatsu is a Japanese word that means “marriage hunting.” It’s the process of looking for someone to settle down with and start a family. In Japan, this is a significant part of one’s life and can sometimes be viewed as more important than having a successful career.
Another critical thing to remember is that Japanese couples emphasize “me time.” They want to preserve their way of life and their relationship.
So try not to smother your partner or expect them to spend every waking moment with you.
Group dates are pretty standard before private dates, so going out with friends and getting to know each other in a more relaxed setting can be helpful.
1) Do: Show Respect for Japanese Culture
It’s essential to respect Japanese Culture when dating someone from Japan.
Japanese Culture emphasizes etiquette and politeness, so make sure you show the same respect you would go to anyone else.
Avoid topics like religion or politics, and stick to lighthearted conversations.
Study essential Japanese customs and behaviors, like what to wear and how to introduce yourself.
Do your best to show that you care about your date’s Culture, and you’ll be sure to make a great first impression.
2) Do: Be Punctual and Respectful
Being punctual and respectful are two of the most important do’s when dating in Japan.
Being on time for a date is essential, as it shows respect for your date and their time.
Showing respect for one another is also crucial in Japan, so take the time to listen to what your date has to say and be mindful of their feelings and opinions.
Being punctual and respectful means demonstrating that you are considerate and appreciate your date’s company.
3) Do: Exchange Gifts
Japanese Culture places a high value on gift-giving. It’s a gesture of showing appreciation and care for one another.
Therefore, exchanging gifts when dating someone from Japan is a great way to build a strong relationship.
When selecting the present, consider the person’s interests or something meaningful to them. It doesn’t need to be expensive; the gesture of giving something is enough.
Also, wrap it nicely with a bow to show your appreciation. Be sure to thank them for the gift, as well. It’s seen as polite to express your gratitude.
4) Do: Learn Some Basic Japanese
Learning the language of your partner’s native country is always a great way to show your commitment and interest in their Culture.
Understanding some basic Japanese is key to establishing a solid connection with your partner in Japan.
Learning simple phrases and words will demonstrate your respect for your partner’s Culture and language.
You can also use your newfound Japanese to impress your partner with witty jokes or compliments.
With a little effort and dedication, you’ll be able to understand and communicate with your partner much more quickly.
What Are the Don’ts of Dating in Japan?
Avoid public displays of affection (PDA).
Japanese people are generally quite shy and will not overtly state their love for each other. So, save the PDA for when you’re behind closed doors.
Another fundamental rule is to avoid making a spectacle of yourself.
Remember: you’re a guest in Japan, so it’s essential to show respect for the people and their Culture.
Lastly, remember that Japanese people value their privacy highly, so try to avoid prying too much into their personal lives.
1) Don’t: Talk about Politics or Religion
One of the essential pieces of advice we can give when it comes to dating in Japan is to avoid discussing politics or religion.
Japan is a very politically and religiously diverse country, and it is essential to respect the beliefs and opinions of your date.
Talking about sensitive topics such as politics and religion can quickly derail conversations and make your date uncomfortable.
It can also lead to strong disagreements, which is not an excellent way to get to know someone.
Sticking to safe topics such as hobbies, books, music, movies, and travel is best.
2) Don’t: Make Assumptions about the Other Person
As you start talking to and getting to know someone in Japan, it’s important to remember not to make assumptions about their beliefs, values, and lifestyle.
Even if you believe you already know much about Japanese Culture, remember that everyone is an individual, and generalizations are always unreliable.
Everyone has unique life experiences, and your date may not conform to your Culture’s expectations or even their Culture.
Be sure to ask questions and listen to their answers to get to know them better and avoid cultural blunders.
3) Don’t: Ask Questions that are too Personal Too Quickly.
When first getting to know someone in Japan, it’s important to remember that you may need to be on the same page regarding personal questions.
Asking too many personal questions too quickly can be seen as intrusive, and it might make the other person feel uncomfortable.
Instead, start with casual topics and get to know each other gradually.
Once you’ve built trust and connection, you can ask more personal questions.
This way, you’ll create a stronger relationship and a better chance of getting to know each other better.
4) Don’t: Expect Physical Intimacy Too Quickly.
Physical intimacy is a big deal in Japan. It’s important to remember that many Japanese people consider their bodies private, so they may not want to share them with someone they have just met.
When you’re getting to know someone and feeling attracted to them, it can be tempting to think about touching or kissing them immediately.
However, this can lead to embarrassment and discomfort if the other person isn’t ready for such a physical connection.
Instead of pushing for physical intimacy too soon (or at all), focus on making solid connections by spending time together regularly and sharing stories about your lives.
How Do You Stay Safe When Dating in Japan?
Japan is a safe country to date in, and there is no need to worry about your safety when dating.
However, it is essential to remember that Japanese society has different values than Western countries.
For instance, if you are a woman, Japanese men may treat you as more delicate than you are used to backing home.
You may also find that you are expected to be more submissive than you are used to.
This is not because Japanese men are sexist or mean but because they were raised in a very different culture from yours.
Unveiling the Age-Old Traditions of Japanese Dating
Japanese dating culture is famously different from other cultures, even other Asian cultures.
Japan is an island country famous for its unique culture and mannerisms, so it’s no surprise that the idea of dating has evolved over the years.
One thing that hasn’t changed, though, is the traditional courting method.
This usually involves older men giving gifts to younger women in exchange for favors in a practice called enjoy kōsai or compensated dating.
Despite its prevalence throughout Japan’s history, including the Heian period, it’s largely frowned upon by both men and women.
That said, there are still plenty of chivalrous customs in Japan today, such as opening doors or giving up a seat on the train or bus.
These small acts of kindness can melt even the coldest hearts, especially if you want to make a good impression on someone you like.
If you’re lucky to meet your future husband in Japan, you should know a few things about dating in this country.
First, it’s important to note that the Japanese don’t consider dating an activity but rather a step toward marriage.
This means they tend to focus on finding someone compatible with them rather than simply having fun together.
This is why you need to step back and consider what you want from your relationship.
Do you want an exciting romance, or do you want something more serious? If you’re looking for love, consider taking some of these tips into account.
What Should You Know About Japanese Gender Roles?
When dating someone from a different culture, it’s crucial to understand how gender roles are viewed in that Culture.
In Japan, men and women often have traditional roles; men are considered the breadwinners and supportive figures.
In contrast, women take on more domestic roles, like caring for the children and home.
You may find that Japanese men rarely engage in household tasks like cleaning or shopping.
That being said, there is also a rising trend among Japanese couples that is gaining more acceptance women can now propose to men! It’s not as expected, but it does happen.
A popular way of proceeding with the relationship is by having a “confession,” where one person confesses their feelings to another.
Remember this cultural difference when dating someone in Japan; it may be a make-or-break moment for your budding relationship.
Where Can You Go for a Date in Japan?
Dates in Japan usually involve a full day of activities. Restaurants, cafes, museums, and parks are all popular spots to go on a date. Shopping centers are also great places to walk around and chat with your date.
If you’re going out with friends, karaoke or bowling alleys are often frequented for fun nights.
Going to the beach or hot springs is also popular in the summertime. There are also a lot of festivals and events during different times of the year that could be good dates too!
For couples specifically, there’s even a “love hotel,” where you can rent rooms for a few hours at a meager cost (for Japan).
You can also book tickets to go on trips or weekend adventures for longer dates.