Gaijins of Japan: Terrie Lloyd, CEO and Founder of Japan Travel

Updated: Dec 25, 2019

 Author: Neil Eichenberger

Publish Date: 5th November 2019

Many of you may have heard of Japan Travel, the primary online destination for visitors planning on traveling to Japan. We got the chance to interview Japan Travel’s foreign CEO and founder, Terrie Lloyd. Throughout his career, Terrie has founded 17 companies in Japan Including the famous job portal Daijob. We got curious and wanted to know more, so we sat down with Terrie to get some advice about success in Japan. #jportlibrary

Terrie Lloyd started his first business, exporting electronic parts to Australia, in a small apartment in Futako Tamagawa, Tokyo. A few years later, he went on to build the wildly popular online job service Daijob (, designed for people in Japan wanting to change work mid-career--a practice that is still frowned upon in Japan. Today, he runs Japan Travel ( with the mission to help the economies of rural Japan by bringing in tourists. He tells us he became an entrepreneur because of the frustration he felt with the working landscape of Japan when he first arrived 30 years ago. Terrie explains, “At the time, the only jobs a foreigner could get were the banking and English teaching jobs – nothing in between.” 

How did it all start? Terrie was born and raised in New Zealand and emigrated to Australia when he was 19 years old. Terrie loved computers and studied programming and digital logic in his spare time before landing an engineering job for an Australia computer company in the early 1980s.

After five intense years in the emerging computer industry, he decided to take a break and experience a new lifestyle. At the time, the only countries offering working visas were Australia and Japan, so in 1983 he packed his backpack and flew to Japan. Although he only planned to stay in Japan for 6 months to absorb some of the cultures, that 6 months became 35 years and counting!

Becoming an Entrepreneur