So you want to become a ski instructor and you’ve done some research into becoming one by doing a ski instructor internship (get put into a job once qualified) course. But you now have a choice to make. Where do you do it?

There are companies in both areas that offer instructor courses and you’re now feeling stuck on how exactly to choose over Japan or Canada to get your qualification and start instructing. Right?

To make this exercise easier, let’s pretend for a minute there are only two existing Northern Hemisphere places to ski – Japan and Canada.


How do you choose?

It’s no secret Japan is trending for being on the ‘must-do’ list as a ski destination right now. Ski tourism has actually surfaced the country from its past recession and now boasts over 500 ski resorts throughout. The entire North America (Canada and the U.S.) combined equates to around 600. Mind-blowing, right?

Let’s further list the advantages of doing a ski internship in Japan over Canada.

Higher powder probability

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past decade you’d have come across the snow-enthusiast term ‘Ja-pow’ by now. The term is a widely-used amalgamation of both ‘Japan’ and ‘powder’ that best describes the result of 15 metres of snow per season in some areas!

Warmer temperatures in Japan

Yes, we’re talking about the ‘coolest’ job in the world here, but winter temperatures in Japan are more favourable for the warm-blooded snow enthusiasts out there.

Japanese winters runs from December to February. During that that time temperatures don’t ever really fall much below 0℃. If you’re someone who doesn’t cope well in the cold then Japan would be a better option for you as it’s generally a warmer climate overall. As it doesn’t need to be ultra cold to produce snow that means you’re faced with the above point more often – higher powder probability.

Higher wages

You’ll be pleased to know that the average wage for a newly qualified ski instructor in Japan is far higher than that of Canada’s new recruits. You can expect an hourly wage of on average 50% more and the cost of living is significantly lower meaning it’s a perfect choice to do a winter season in Japan and avoid being labelled with the expression ‘ski bum’ (a not-so-cool thing anymore…).

Ease of acquiring a visa

There are more visas issued for Japan and less competition than Canada so getting your Japanese visa is relatively straightforward with processing time around five days. Just one less thing to worry about when planning your trip.

Cost of applying for a visa

The cost of the Japan visa application is significantly cheaper than that of a Canadian visa. Your pre-trip costs can add up quickly so the less expenses it takes to get you on your way, the better.

Higher probability of consistent work

The increasing demand for English-speaking instructors in Japanese resorts means a greater opportunity for you to receive work as a newly qualified instructor. Japan doesn’t favour second season instructors either as in Canada it’s likely that first season instructors might get bumped further down the priority list when it comes to lesson demand.

So there you have it. A comprehensive list of reasons why Japan outweighs Canada when choosing where to do a ski instructor course which is ultimately, the coolest job in the world.