No Receipts

No Receipts.

In regard to receipts.

The company you use to pay - typically PayPal or bank transfer - will provide your with a receipt. That is the job that PayPal and banks, as Payment Platform and Money Transfer Service providers perform, and for which they charge you and / or WWOOF Japan a commission fee to do. The same goes for the post office money transfer system ‘yubin furikomi’ in Japan, via the proof of receipt of funds docket that Japan Post issues.

In the case of PayPal and bank transfer, you can type in a message with your payment, for example: ‘WWOOF’, or ‘WWO Jap’, or ‘WJ fee’.

The message you are asked to send to us to tell us that you have paid, will augment the receipt or proof of receipt of funds docket.

Unfortunately, we can no longer survive by using a system in which all aspects of WWOOFers' and hosts’ applications and payments are processed manually by WWOOF Japan staff persons. We have had to innovate and reallocate resources.

The manual tasks we are doing are focused on areas that we identify to directly relate to maximising the wherewithal for both hosts and WWOOFers to share quality experiences. WWOOF is to be a means to learning and mutually rewarding life experiences. A central aspect is following-up promptly and in much detail all WWOOFer and host contacts regarding problems experienced in relation to WWOOFing.

It’s important to note that this is not always the case in WWOOF. In some WWOOF countries, it is not uncommon for there to be zero person-to-person contact between the WWOOF admin office and some hosts over periods of years.

For these reasons we at the WWOOF Japan office do not provide receipts. It is one of the changes we have had to implement in order to cope with the transformations being driven by new internet technologies. We ask for your positive understanding, and thank you for it.

In anticipation of complaints that include a view that: 1. we are obliged to give receipts; or 2. the internet has made it easier to run WWOOF.; or 3. the internet has made us more financially viable. These assumptions are misguided; none of them are true.

1a. Our first obligation is to keep WWOOF in Japan going.

1b. And to keep it functioning well, with a priority towards seeing that there is a quality of experience for both hosts and WWOOFers.

1c. It makes no sense to duplicate receipts that are anyway provided by PayPal, banks and post offices, and consequently to allow the quality of WWOOF to fall.

1d. We cannot provide receipts for the amount you pay. From PayPal, we receive money that you sent, less PayPal’s commission. In the case of bank transfer and Japan Post, we cannot give you a receipt for the fees you pay them.

1e. Finally, and importantly, in the new internet world, we are a service provider; we are not a payment platform.

2. The advent of the internet has reduced the freedom we have in the way we administer WWOOF. But we cannot fight it. It is the way the world is now. We must adapt.

3a. The costs of producing and maintaining technology including website, software and databases are substantial. And it is never ending. New technologies begin to become obsolete in approx two years. Usually within approx two years of paying to have a major update that typically takes years to complete, we begin paying for yet another update.

3b. There are bugs associated with internet technology, usually multiple times a week. So we have to pay for 24/7 tech support to be available to fix bug problems immediately they occur.

Having read this, we hope you understand our policy regarding receipts. It is one of many decisions we have made and are making ongoing, in order to keep WWOOF going in Japan, and to keep quality high.

Good WWOOFing!

To media inquiries

We can support you to do media work. Please tell us some details about your work; for example:

Your full contact details including your name, your street address, you website address, your telephone number.
The magazine, or newspaper, or tv program, or other, that will feature your work
Full contact details for that magazine, newspaper, tv program, or other
Some information about the audience for your media.
What kinds of places in Japan do you want to film or interview?
What locations do you want to go to?
When do you want to go?
How many people will be going?

The more information you can give us, the more assistance we will be able to give you.

Thanking you and looking forward to your next email.

Kind regards,
The team at WWOOF Japan

Marijuana is an illegal substance in Japan

As people coming into Japan through Japanese immigration will see in the documents they are obliged to complete and submit to authorities, marijuana is an illegal substance in Japan.

Organic; taking as much as possible into account

This includes part of an email we wrote to a WWOOFer in early 2010.

At the WWOOF Japan office we are building a network of diverse experiences. Some WWOOFers want only organic farms, and we have lots of organic farms, representing the majority of our hosts. But other WWOOFers want different experiences, examples of which include about how to make for themselves a sustainable organic lifestyle. Here is an account of a WWOOFer we met in early 2010. 

A young woman WWOOFer from the city wanting to move to a rural area herself, hungry to know what the issues are that she will have to come to terms with; availability of places for rent, whether there is farming land contiguous to homes for rent, or whether it will be necessary to rent a house and farming land separately; how to receive WWOOFers herself when she becomes a host; what if any work hosts do in addition to or other than organic farming that she can emulate to earn enough income to be self sufficient. If she decides to grow organic produce, will she do best by selling it as raw produce, or, by working to value add it into some forms of processed foods for sale; can she sell it at the roadside, or will she need to find buyers for her products. What produce lends itself best to being value added without capital expenditure on machinery. She was WWOOFing at a young single female WWOOFer's place, one of the reasons for which was to find out if the woman host was single out of choice, or whether she wanted to have a partner but couldn't find one in the rural area; the ramification for the WWOOFer being that if she leaves the city she might be subjecting herself to a life of being single. 

In most developed countries, rural areas are disadvantaged because young people are leaving for the cities, and those young people who stay are often bored for lack of opportunities; despite rural areas usually having more access to natural and organic foodstuffs. This highlights that sustainable lifestyles encompass more than only what we eat. It is too about what we think, new learning, and being intellectually and emotionally satisfied and sustainable. Only qualifying organic farms as worthy to be a WWOOF host then, fails to take into account all the issues people are faced with. 

Another host comes to mind; a retired public servant living alone with a passion for books and learning. There was no organic growing at his place. But many WWOOFers loved the experiences that could be had at the host. The man loved sharing his English and Japanese reference library with WWOOFers, and some WWOOFers could not get enough of it. 

There are many non-organic farming situations that attract WWOOFers, that are organic experiences and that do allow those WWOOFers to get below the veneer of tourism. Some WWOOFers from English speaking backgrounds value being in a home environment with only native speaking Japanese people, to maximize their learning to speak Japanese. 

We often have families WWOOFing together (man, woman, & child), and they often seek hosts that have young children; with a young child herself, looking after the host's children might be the only help the mother who is WWOOFing can give to the host, in exchange for staying and eating with the host, and having her own child exposed to the experiences the host's place facilitates. 

Some WWOOFers want an office situation because it is the area of work that they do. Some WWOOFers will go to a host's place because of the work done at the host is what the WWOOFer wants to learn about to further their own career, and that might be other than organic growing. 

Some WWOOFers might start out using WWOOF as an inexpensive means to travel and meet local Japanese people, but through the influence of grass roots and self sufficient lifestyles that our hosts are engaged in, develop an interest in environmentally responsible lifestyles. 

We just can't see it as the right thing to do, for us at the WWOOF Japan office to tell a host that what he or she is doing is not of the right worth, based on our views, or based on the views of another person, when the host is prepared to welcome WWOOFers to their place, to share learning with WWOOFers, is passionate about a lifestyle that is progressive, and some WWOOFers find going to the host's place worthwhile. 

Host Codes have changed

Host Codes have changed. Host Codes are now the lower case letter "h", followed by the Host Code as it was; for example: h1234
WWOOF Japan  Honcho 2-jo, 3-chome 6-7, Higashi-ku, Sapporo, 065-0042  JAPAN
E-mail: Contact Form   Fax number from within Japan: (03) 4496-6370    Fax number from outside Japan: +81 3 4496-6370

WWOOF Japan LLP (Limited Liability Partnership)