Becki Benedict & Shawn Weldon’s Bio
It all started when Becki took her first trip to Japan in 1997 to study abroad. She lived with a host family and was completely fascinated by the culture. She later passed the Japanese Language Proficiency Test and got accepted into the highly respected Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program.
When Shawn visited Japan for the first time in 1998, he felt the same fascination. Growing up as an American in Italy, he understood and appreciated living abroad.
Together, they ended up living in Japan for over 10 years and worked at universities and private companies in five different cities – Kitakyushu, Hamamatsu, Nagoya, Shizuoka, and Wakayama.
Becki and Shawn have traveled extensively throughout Japan and Asia. They worked in China for one year and Thailand for two years, and they’ve visited Cambodia, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Laos, Macau, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, South Korea, Taiwan, and Vietnam.
In 2011, they both earned an MA in International Studies and worked as Corporate Trainers for the largest steel producer in Japan. It was around this time that tourism in Japan started to increase.
They met many travelers and were surprised to hear about their difficulties, from the language barrier to understanding Japan’s public transportation system, finding reasonable hotels, and ordering food in restaurants.