Tokyo ‘weekend’ dads see little of kids during week: study


Fathers in Tokyo spend less time with their children on weekdays compared with fathers in Seoul, Beijing and Shanghai, but out of the four groups they spend the most time with them on weekends, a recent poll by Benesse Corp. found.

Ahead of Fathers’ Day on June 20, Benesse released a survey on fathers in the four cities who have a child aged 5 or younger. It surveyed 1,602 fathers in Tokyo last August, then in March polled 1,046 fathers in Seoul, 1,800 fathers in Beijing and 1,800 fathers in Shanghai.

Asked how much time they spend with their children on weekdays, 20.0 percent of fathers in Tokyo responded they set aside 30 minutes to one hour a day, while 26.5 percent, the largest group, said they spend between one and two hours.

In Seoul, 29 percent of fathers, the largest percentage, devote one to two hours a day to their kids, and 25.9 percent, the second-largest, spend two to three hours. Chinese fathers, meanwhile, tend to make more time for their kids, with more than 70 percent in the two Chinese cities saying they set aside two hours or more.

But fathers in Tokyo tend to devote more time to their children on weekends.

While 52.2 percent of Tokyo dads spend 10 hours or more a day with their kids on weekends, a smaller proportion of fathers in Seoul, 48.4 percent, spent an equal amount of time with their children.

The percentage of fathers spending 10 hours or more was much less in Beijing, at about 34 percent, and in Shanghai, at only 30.8 percent.