Working in Hakuba
Living and working in Hakuba doesn't need to be a pipedream. Whether you are looking to fill a gap year by doing a ski season or if your ambitions lie more for the long term. Here we give you the low down on the job market.
There are basically two types of jobs on offer those on the mountain and those off the mountain. For most jobs you will require a visa. Most staff usually come to Japan on a working holiday visa.On the Mountain
Most of the companies that hire foreign staff for work on the mountains also provide accommodation in the company's dormitory.
- Lift Operator
Here you will be working with your Japanese colleagues probably starting work about 7.30am and finishing when the lift close at about 5:00pm. The early mornings will be spent opening the lifts, clearing snow away and setting up guide ropes. After that when the guests start arriving, you need to make sure that they safely get and off the lifts. You must have a friendly smile to do this job.
- Ski Instructor
Here you probably start working at around 8:30am and finish about 4:30pm with usually a 1 hour lunch in between. Most ski schools have a 2 hour lesson in the morning followed by a 2 hour lesson in the afternoon. You will need to have all the certifications to teach skiing or boarding. A little Japanese is also very useful
- Restaurant Staff
Here you will probably start about 8:00am and finish about 4:30pm. Duties will include preparing the food, clearing away dishes, wiping down tables, taking orders in English and Japanese and serving. A little Japanese is very useful for this kind of work.
Off the Mountain
Some companies will provide accommodation but not all.
- Ski Rental
You can expect to start early from 7:00 have a long break (to ski or board) and then expect to work in the evenings. You will be dealing with mainly foreign guests. Checking what equipment they require, reccommedations and giving the correct equipment. Some ski rental might also ask you to tune the skis/boards in the quiet times.
- Hotel Concierge
Working at the larger hotels you can expect to work shifts. You will take care of customers bags when they are checking in. Explaining information about the ski resort. Letting customers know when the ski shuttles arrive and leave. A friendly smile is also required.
- Lodge Worker
This job entails many duties, one day you could be clearing snow, the next you could be making up the beds.Preparing food could also be one of your duties. Most lodges also give accommodation and ski pass to their workers.
Long Term Positions