Manga Cafe’s 漫画喫茶 and Internet Cafe’s ネットカフェ
Internet and Manga cafe’s are everywhere in Japan.
They are now part of the modern Japanese culture. The internet cafe’s are the newest version of the original manga cafe. Manga Cafe’s or in Japanese mangakissa 漫画喫茶 made their debut in post world war 2. Back then, most people could not afford to buy manga’s or for the most fortunate ones the space restriction that many Japanese home have made it difficult to store those comic book.
But what exactly is a Maga or internet cafe?
Pretty easy! It’s a place where you can kick back and enjoy a good Manga ( japanese comic book) or surf the web.
Mostly like everything Japanese there is a bit more to it! A lot of Japanese people go in those cafe only to relax and enjoy some good reading. But there is a hole sub culture behind those cafe’s!
In Japanese it is mostly refered as netto kafe nanmin ネットカフェ難民 which literally mean Net cafe refugees. In recent year in major cities like Tokyo, the price of living as sky rocketed, leaving many people with employment homeless. In august, 2007 the Health Ministry of Japan stated in a new conference that Around 5,400 people with no fixed address spend their nights at 24-hour Internet cafe’s across Japan, of whom 27 percent are in their 20s. Since then the government has being reluctant to release new numbers but the number of those refugee as most definitely sky rocketed!
Photo by Ryosuke Kawasaki
You must wonder why!? Why those homeless business man or woman would live there and not at the hotel or even a hostel?
Internet cafe’s are cheap usually 400yen an hour, plus the normally offer packages for long time periods. You can have a variety of different room types like: normal chairs, non-smoking seat, sofa, massage chair, party room, internet seat, pair seat, zashiki (a tatami), reclining seat and they even have some small futon rooms too. Then you have the other interesting aspect for those homeless business man the free stuff. In all manga and internet cafe’s you have a variety of free drinks and snakes all included in you basic prices. They also offer sheep convinces type food.
Photo by Ryosuke Kawasaki
You can also have access in your room or inside the cafe to movies,DVDs players, shower room, darts, magazines, PC class, music CDs, nail salon, pool table, newspapers, CATV/CS broadcast, table tennis, slot machine, tanning bed, mahjong and many more depending of the location. All those services under 1400 or 1600yen a night which is way cheaper than a really crappy capsule hotel or anything in the cheap range.