Dating Asian Guys 101: When in Rome...Dating Abroad

9.9.13 ShaSha LaPerf 5 Comments

I'm really on a role with the blog post! The wedding is less than two months away and while I'm still busy dealing with stuff I did want to get back to my blog. In October, I'll probably take another hiatus to finalize a lot of stuff. So I'm getting out a lot of writing now.

And it's another post in the Dating Asian Guys 101 segment! Here are the previous posts:

Dating Asian Guys 101: Initial Contact
Dating Asian Guys 101: Dating Asian Men and Loving Asian Pop Culture
Dating Asian Guys 101: The Matters of Shyness
Dating Asian Guys 101: Run Girl Run! Guys to Avoid
Dating Asian Guys 101: Fears and Frustrations
Dating Asian Guys 101: Online A-Lovin' and A-Datin' Part 1
Dating Asian Guys 101: Online A-Lovin' and A-Dating Part 2

I normally try to space these out a bit more. However I was somewhat inspired by my post which was a response to Joyful as well as some other comments in that thread. And so I decided to write about dating while being abroad. I've talked about it a bit on the blog but had yet to just but all my thoughts into one place. Of course my experiences will be based off when I lived in Japan, and a lot of what I'm putting her is actually things I wish I had done or thought about at the time. This is another rather long post. Normally I get creative with finding ways to break things up but my mind is too all over the place for me to be creative this time around. LOL if it gets TL;DR than just read the bolded parts.

Take Yo Ass Out The Country!
A blog post a wrote a while ago. The TL;DR version is this: don't be a afraid to see the world! Look into student abroad, work abroad, and volunteer abroad programs. It can be a really amazing experience!

There are more important things to deal with before dating.
Going to another country is very exciting and the idea of dating in another country is pretty intriguing. However before you get to thinking about all the men you'll date or won't date make sure you have other things in order. Where are you going to live? What medications will you need and can you get them in that country? Will you have enough clothes? How much money will you need? And if you're going to Japan, learn about bug spray! I saw some big ass bugs there that had me screaming out my apartment on more than on occasion!!! LOL. All those things should be a priority.

Spend time getting used to your new surroundings. 
So you finally got on the plane and take the trip halfway around the world. You're seeing all new faces, hearing an all new language, eating all new foods. So it makes sense to unpack on day one and run out and meet someone ASAP right? Especially if it's a cute guy right? Wrong! Girl, you just got there! There will be men there next week and the week after that. Get over jet lag before you start scouring the internet to meet people. Before I went to Japan I actually did have two pen pals I wanted to meet, but didn't actually meet them until I was there for a few weeks. I would say spend at least your first two weeks getting over jet lag, and getting familiar with your surrounding. If you're going to be there for a while, learn about bank accounts, cell phones, internet access, transportation, etc. But what if your trip is only like a month? Honestly I would say as cute as those guys are, you should put dating on hold. I would image a much shorter trip would be jammed with activities anyway. Now I'm not the type of judge if you're a one-night stand kinda girl and that's what happens in your month long trip. But I will judge your ass if the purpose of said one-night stand is just to say you banged some dude in Asia. I'll expand on that a bit more later.

Go out alone.
So you know where the grocery store is and how to get to work or school. You've gotten over jet lag, and your daily routine is all set. It's time to meet some folks! Don't be afraid to be out and about by yourself. Go to a cafe and have lunch alone, take a walk in a park. Go shopping. Go to a museum. Ride a bike. Of course it might be a little intimidating to do things by yourself because you fear people staring at you or stuff like that. And if you're already on the shy side, going out by yourself seems like a nutty idea. But let's face it, you're going to be a foreign face in that new world. People are going to look at you regardless of what you're doing. So let them stare and keep it moving! Don't let your fears of someone looking at you be a reason to not do anything. I had friends in Japan I hung out with, but I also went out by myself a lot of clubbing to just walking around Harajuku. And men would approach me. Sometimes it was just a friendly conversation, other times it was to ask me out. This doesn't mean that every guy who wants to talk to you will have good intentions; their are plenty of assholes abroad. So of course be aware of your surroundings and who you're talking to.
However don't be so guarded that you aren't approachable at all. When I didn't want to be bothered, I made a point to walk faster, with my headphones on, and kept my head lower. On the train I had a book in my hand or slept. When I didn't care as much I stood up straighter, walked slower, and even walked up to people to ask for things, or openly showed interest in things.

Learn the language.
While you can get around a lot of countries with English, speaking some of the language definitely gives you an edge. It helps with directions, ordering food, and of course meeting guys. A lot of guys will be genuinely impressed that you're putting effort into speaking their language because a lot of foreigners choose not too. And this leads to offers of language exchange, friendly chatting and even flirting. Guys thought it was kinda amusing that I didn't speak the "cute Japanese girl way" but rather with a more masculine tone (I'd picked up a lot from my students and watching TV). Don't be afraid to admit when you don't understand what people are saying. Use your body language to express yourself and pay attention to others to understand context. And encourage them to learn your language as well. Stress the importance of a language exchange; the exchange shouldn't be one-side unless both parties are comfortable with just speaking and learning one side. Additionally my knowledge of Japanese was also useful when it came to meeting people online. I used Mixi not just to find karaoke meet-ups and club hoppers to hang out with. And yes there were men in those groups as well. Even used Japanese dating sites on occasion.

Make friends with local women.
Why? Because they know GUYS! LOL okay, I will say you shouldn't just make friends with women as a way to meet guys. You should make friends with women because despite what some chicks think, we need women friends. They may be from another culture, but sometimes you need to talk to someone with a vagina about life. And yes they do know men. Actually I was a bit backwards; I met women through my male friends. But one of the women took me to an international group meet up that was a lot of fun! As for other women, they actually encouraged me to date Japanese guys. Before I mentioned not using women to meet men. have to be careful of this happening to you too. Some women may want to be friends with you in the hopes that you'll introduce them to foreign men. I don't think this is really common but it can happen. So like you should vet dates, vet your women friends! Make sure there's a real friendship between you to.

Dating shouldn't be about bragging rights. 
Earlier I said that your one-night stands shouldn't be based on you just wanting to have sex with a guy from another country and I wanted to elaborate on that a bit. On my blog I've talked a bit about the different men I've dating. Hell in this blog post alone I'm talking about all these dudes I've dated, you get the point. I definitely don't have an issue with the "when in Rome" theory when it comes to dating, but your dating should be based on you having an attraction to the men you meet. When I first got to Japan, I'll admit I was flattered when men would talk to me, thinking, "OMG Japanese guys think I'm so HAWT!" And early in my dating stages this clouded my judgement. And I really wanted to date a Japanese host dude because I wanted to say I dated one. Umm...yes that is NOT the way to think about people. You should be with men because you like them as people. When you're in another country date to your heart's content but make sure your dating is because you are physically attracted to them but also because that person is funny, open-minded, listens to you, etc. You get the idea. No one will really be impressed with the number of guys you've dated abroad when you can't say anything about them outside of "yeah I wanted an Chinese guy in China and got him."

The more you're open to talking about American culture, the more men you'll meet. 
I've come across a lot of women who assume that Japanese guys will just love them because they know so much about Japanese pop culture and have their gyaru make-up down to a science. But from my experience my interested in both American and Japanese culture is what came in the more handy. Guys were impressed that I knew who Utada Hikaru was, but they liked that I listened to Usher and watched The Matrix. And I'm sure some of you are thinking "well I'm not interested into those guys that are just looking to talk to me about hip-hop!" Well a lot of guys abroad are interest in American culture on a very broad terms. They'd also like to talk about American musics and movies and books and TV shows. There's nothing wrong with you being interested in Asian pop culture and wanting to discuss these things with guys in Asia, but don't get into a hissy fit when he wants to talk about American culture. I will say to keep and eye out for guys who are looking for the exotic American or exotic Nigeria beauty because they do exist. But there are plenty of guys who like American culture and other cultures as well as their own culture. It's like I said about language, the exchange should be an exchange. If he's open to talk about K-pop then you should be open to talk about...A-pop.

His personality or attitude isn't always culturally related.
I've mentioned this in a post before but it still fits into this blog post. Don't assume that a guy's quirks are because of his culture or ethnicity. In Japan I met introverted guys, outgoing guys, cool guys, assholes. The personalities and attitudes were so different from each other that it really is difficult to say they all had on thing in common outside of them being Japanese. Now I can't say that culture doesn't play a role in who we are because it definitely does. However we simply can't assume that everything a person does is related to their culture upbringing. If a guy doesn't want to hold your hand, maybe it's not because he's Chinese; maybe it's just because he doesn't like PDA. Get to know someone a bit before posting on websites asking why said guys in their country do this or do that. Not every guy will follow what would be the social norms.

Not every guy is going to be a super dreamy actor or singer so date the "regular" guy.
This somewhat ties with the two previous sections. You should always have a set of standards, but also be open-minded when it comes to dating. Don't spend all your time looking for a guy that looks like Leehom Wang or a famous soccer player or something. I had dates with guys who were DJs, salarymen, freeta , college students (they were close to my age folks), and an "actor"--his words not mine. I never saw him in a damn thing but who am I to say anything, LOL? The point here is that there is a diverse group of guys out there and be open to getting to know them.

Don't count out foreign men. 
I didn't just have my eyes out for Japanese guys. Because of some of the places I went, I couldn't help but run into non-Japanese guys. And some of them were pretty damn cute. I met this one British black guy at the club that was totally on my radar...except he was at the club with his girlfriend, LOL. Met guys from Australia, Czech Republic, Kenya, Jamaica, Canada, and here in the US. In Japan there is definitely a stigma about foreign men because there is a segment that go to Japan looking for some Japanese ass. But not all guys are like that and are just cool people. When I was leaving Japan I met a black girl who met a white European dude at work and they left Japan together engaged. So maybe your dream guy isn't Filipino or Korean, he might be a white guy from Brisbane or a black dude from Vancouver.

Spend time thinking about long term relationships and your short term stay.
It's actually difficult for me to say when you should start to think about this. Because most people will have a basic time frame for when they want to stay in a country and this probably will shape dating habits. If you're in China for just a year and four months in you start dating a guy, you will have to think about what you want from the relationship as well as what he wants. You shouldn't pretend like your leaving won't happen. You'll have to consider if you want to try something long distance or not. You might make a bold step and decide to stay in the country for him. Or he might decide to go back with you. Either way the two of you should have a talk about it and not a month before you're heading back on a plane to go home.

Sometimes things work out and sometimes they don't. It's called dating.
In the end, dating in another country isn't really that different from dating at home. Sometimes it's going to be extremely frustrating and sometimes it will be awesome. You may meet someone who's pretty cool and you want to spend your life with, or it may just be a bunch of dates that don't get too far. Try to have fun and don't get discourage if things to work out. Dating is always going to be a rollercoaster no matter where it takes place. Just remember that your life in a new country should be more about dating and go out and have some fun!


  1. Excellent blog! Valuable information you offer in your articles. Its need to aware this topic. Great!

  2. Great post as always! I really agree with learning the language, and becoming friends with the local girls. Will certainly open doors to meeting some of the local guys.

    Even though I didn't actually date when I did my exchange in Korea (I was very very shy),I did meet a lot of guys nonetheless, both Korean and other foreigners.

    I'd say the biggest for meeting local guys (other than classes), was joining one of the university clubs. You might be intimidated to go on your own at first because of the language barrier, but I really suggest it. Go with a friend if you're nervous! I used to do Karate back home, and I actually joined the Tae Kwon Do team at my university there. I was terrified at first, but I ended up joining with two girls from China who I became great friends with. :) I even had a chance to compete in a national tournament. Lots of great memories!

    But yes to the point of this... there were of course, tons of guys there. A lot of them were very eager to help me, and also ask a lot about Canada. They had questions about Halloween to apple pie to George St.Pierre (famous UFC fighter).

    So yeah, go out and try some group hobbies! Even if you don't find the one, you'll have some great memories and skills. I know I sure did.

  3. I haven't commented on your blog in such a long time! When I checked to see if you have updated and saw this, I clicked it right away to start reading, haha.

    Anyways, this entry was very informative and you have great insight on various things that I was also curious about. On Facebook, there are a few AMBW groups and when I was a member of these groups, I would notice how many women appeared to want to date men that looked like a K-Pop idol. It was very realistic in a sense, but I assumed they had their mindset in that way because they like certain k-pop idols. I may like people as G-Dragon, Sen Mitsuji and Miyavi, but I'm not going to go out of my way to find someone that looks just like them, lol.

    For me, living in Michigan (especially Detroit), it never difficult to meet Asian men. Most I've realized are in Ann Arbor or Novi area, and/or attending Michigan University. However, I have managed to meet a few Asian men in person by going online (specifically okcupid). Some of them were okay...but I no longer associate with them, whereas others they never live in my state. ^^; Currently I do language exchange with people in Japan to help improve my Japanese skills. So, I would say the website "Japan-Guide" is a good place to become friends with people in Japan, or other places.

    Before I ramble too much, haha, I'll end on this note~! Good post, ShaSha! Hopefully, others that needed advice on this topic will see this. :)

    1. Sorry, I meant it *is* difficult to met Asian men in Michigan, Detroit area ^^;

  4. Although nothing is guaranteed, if I was specifically looking for just Asian men I would prefer to meet them in the states because of my chances of going there. To better improve my chances by meeting them in colleges, or festivals (volunteering) .I just happen to work near what I call "Little India"because of the many South Asian/Persian people there.Ironically,My previous work place was near a lot of Asians, I guess because of a college near there as well. Was the good lord trying to tell me something?! It wasn'tthat I was purposefully putting myself in these situations...I wasn't,though I was certainlyhope that the locationof my workplaceswere amusing,not isolated and near good restaurants,which I received.

    If I just happen to be in an Asian country and met a good Asian man that's ok,but I ll let nature take its course.I pass by several Indian men everday,but been asked on dates by two of them.One was Filipinoand met him in a predominately Black community.That is my thing also.People will be surprisedat where you can meet Asian men.Sure ,you can increase you chances of meeting in the following places we all discussed on here but if it is meant to be , you can meet them anywhere. A friend of mine met her Jewish husband at a Diary Queen near my! That was 10 years ago a d it's still going strong.