Poor youths sleep in Japan's Net cafes

It's almost midnight as Ryo settles into a reclining chair for the night, a can of tea and a pack of cigarettes at his side, a construction job awaiting him in the morning.

For the time being, this cramped cubicle at an Internet cafe - with its TV and flickering PC monitor - is home.

Ryo, who refused to give his full name, is part of what experts believe is a new social strata in Japan - poor, young people who live out of cheap, 24-hour Internet cafes to escape the streets.

Though there are no reliable numbers, experts warn a growing number of younger Japanese are sleeping in cheap Net cafes like Ichigo, where Ryo, who is 30, spends five nights a week. He stays with a friend on weekends.

The rising number of people like Ryo, known as "Internet cafe refugees," has raised enough concern that the Health Ministry is preparing to study the 1,300 Internet cafes nationwide.

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closedxxx4747d ago

What the hell am I paying $1475/month + $40/month for internet when I could just be crashing at the local internet cafe'!?

zerofunction4747d ago

"Internet cafe refugees"......who the hell thinks up these things?

jam94747d ago

One night at the Internet Cafe is like $12. A night in a cheapest hotel in Japan is like $25. A rent fee for an apartment is like $400 a month, but need about $600 for security deposit. Foods are also expensive here. $2 for 1/4 gallon milk. $1.5 for 12 eggs. It's not easy to live in Japan especially once you started losing handle.