dtrue wrote:I'm glad you started this.....I can't figure our how many I really need or if I will need to bring them because my size is hard to find. I wear an 7.5/8 in womans. Do Japanese shoes tend to be narrow?
Size wise, you'll be fine, 7.5/8 is pretty average, any women above a US9 (womens) is going to have some trouble finding shoes in Japan. I don't know about narrow though (I'm a US10w so I never bought shoes in Japan
ChottoMonkey's got a good list of shoes going, here are my thoughts:1 pair of boots
(for snowy winter weather)
- Yes, definitely bring boots (or maybe ship them to yourself along with other winter clothes). If you're not placed in a snowy area, I still recommend a good pair of water-resistant boots/shoes. 1 pair of indoor slip on shoes (for teaching) - indoor only
1 pair of indoor trainers (for school gym) - indoor only
- If you're planning to assist the basketball/volleyball club or something, you may want two pairs of shoes, but generally you can get away with one pair of (non-marking) shoes for school. Virtually all my teachers wore sneakers as their indoor, teaching shoes.
If you go to multiple schools, you should consider leaving a pair of indoor shoes at your "base school" (they most likely will provide you a permanent shoe cubby) and then having another pair (or pairs) for your visit schools. Anything to avoid having to wear the guest slippers all day (which I did, several times >.<)2 pairs of dress shoes
Probably a good idea to have 2, one indoor and one outdoor, though really, the shoes you wear indoors really don't have to be virgin shoes that have never touched the concrete/dirt, they just have to be clean. I wore dress shoes at school very rarely (mostly just entrance ceremonies, graduation, maybe the occasional meeting or demo lesson) so I would just make sure my dress shoes were clean and bring them with me on the day.1 pair of sandals - outdoor only
1 pair of daily use shoes - outdoor only
Agreed, pretty self explanatory1 pair of house shoes/slippers - Indoor only
If you're running short on suitcase space, these are very easily found in Japan for cheap (unless you have particularly large feet). I also grew to love slipper socks, I had ballet-style one for the warmer months, and long slipper socks (I guess they can be call chalet socks) for the cold months.
This probably goes without saying but always go for shoes you can easily put on and take off. In addition to school and your home, many restaurants, hotels(namely ryokans), and various other places require you leave your shoes at the door. You don't want to be the one who takes forever putting their shoes on.
And comfort, comfort, comfort! Your school shoes should be something you're okay with standing in for 5 or 6 school periods a day. Don't let style dictate your choices too much, I saw far too many Japanese girls wearing heels in highly inappropriate situations, such as hiking the trails of Miyajima >.<