Home Forums Off Topic JAPAN TRAVEL MEGATHREAD

This topic contains 117 replies, has 31 voices, and was last updated by  Joel 10 years, 11 months ago.

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  • #38807

    Joel
    Member

    I was there for fifteen days, and spent 68,250 yen, though this doesn’t include hotels (which my friend paid by credit card – and many of which included free breakfast) or most of our train travel (since we bought JR Passes before we went). I didn’t spend a whole bunch on shopping either (though I did waste five thousand on a taxi when I (mistakenly) thought the train I wanted had stopped for the night…)

    As for the cheapest airport, Google searches suggest Narita, Kansai, Chubu and Fukuoka in varying order. Keeping in mind some of them will be just plain unavailable depending on your country of origin (for example, flights from Australia only land at Narita or Kansai), and it’s going to depend heavily on the time of year anyway.

    #38808

    Cool, thanks, Joel. The yen count seems very reasonable. I’m flying from the east coast of America, and I have two airports near me that both fluctuate heavily in prices! I’m hoping to not have to worry about hotels too much, either resorting to couch surfing or capsule hotels.

    #38811

    I recommend getting a JR pass if you want to travel by shinkansen. You will probably also need to spend some money on public transport ;) From airport to wherever you are staying etc.. I will be traveling in just under a month and I am expecting to spend around 60,000JPY to spend on food during my stay (13 days). Being a student it is in my highest interest to travel cheap, but instead of sleeping in only capsule hotels I decided to do homestay for a few days, capsule hotels for a few days, and then booked a hotel while I am in Tokyo. Capsule hotels are however ½ the price per night…

    If it helps you in any way my overall budget (including flight ticket, food, JR pass, hotels, and some extra money to spend on whatever I want) is around 400,000JPY. I think you can do it for probably around 300,000 if you take a cheaper plane, spend less on food, and less on hotel.

    #38813

    Joel
    Member

    Business hotels are also a viable option. I’m sure I’ve posted this before, but my friend and I stayed in Toyoko Inn branches most of the time.

    http://www.toyoko-inn.com/eng/

    Interestingly, they seem to have changed their signage since I was there. The Japanese name used to be 東横イン, now it seems to be 東横INN…

    Also, strongly agree on the JR Pass. If you take a Shinkansen from Tokyo to Kyoto and back, that’s most of the cost of a two-week pass covered right there. If you’re only staying in one city, it’s probably not worth it so much, but certainly look into getting a Suica card (or the local equivalent).

    #39160

    Vivian
    Member

    Hello guys, it’s me again.So it’s time for me to travel. Almost. About 10 days and then a dream comes true.

    A friend asked me to buy him some j-pop related stuff, like merchandise or familiar stuff. Is there a certain shop for this in Tokio or can I find it in music stores? I’m talking about goodies like shirts, prints or figurines.

    We’re visiting only Tokio so we’re going by train most of the time (I love trains btw) and I was wondering if there’s some kind of weekly city ticket we can buy for save some money? We have something like that here in Germany for every big city :)

    #39164

    Jason
    Member

    Vivian, I can recommend a few places you can look around.  In Shibuya there is a Tower Records not far from the train station there.  In Harajuku you might find some fashion shops related to J-pop, and definitely Akihabara if you want to shop around for figurines.

    As for train passes, I didn’t notice much that was there that was very economical for a week or two long stay, however you’ll definitely want to look into something called pasmo.  It’s a touchless payment system that you load up with yen and makes paying for subway and train fares very easy and convenient.  There is a small deposit to pay to get one, which is refundable but if you plan on returning for multiple trips I do recommend keeping it.  You can find more info about it here.

    http://www.pasmo.co.jp/en/

    #39165

    Joel
    Member

    Or a Suica card. It’s useable in more places, you don’t have a pre-charge it with quite so much when you first get it, and if you’re coming from Narita Airport, you can get a Suica + Narita Express package deal.

    http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2359_suica_nex.html

    I can’t say that I’ve ever seen someone suggest getting a Pasmo before. =)

    #39166

    winterpromise31
    Moderator

    Vivian – Have a great trip! I hope you come back here and tell us all about it! :) :)

    Cassandra

    #39167

    Joel
    Member

    And something else I forgot to add: it might be worth crunching the numbers to see if a JR East Pass is worth the money – since you’re only staying in Tokyo, you’ll probably find it’s not (and an all-Japan JR Pass certainly wouldn’t be) but there’s no harm in checking. It gives you free travel on all JR trains (though not the private subways). It tends to pay for itself if you’re riding the Shinkansen around the place, but not so much if you’re staying in one city.

    http://www.jreast.co.jp/e/eastpass

    If you want to find out train fares, Hyperdia is the place to go. There’s other similar websites, but Hyperdia is the one I use the most. =)

    http://www.hyperdia.com

     

    One minor side note: it’s “Tokyo” rather than “Tokio” – in hiragana, とうきょう. If you pronounce it とうきお, you’re going to get some funny looks. =)

    Also, concur with Winterpromise: tell us all about it. =D

    #39169

    Anonymous

    I can confirm Tower Records in Shibuya is amazing. A lot of free posters/goods if you buy a lot.

    If you manage to get there, at the top of the street opposite tower records is a really good underground restaurant. Best meat ever.

     

    Otherwise anywhere in Akihabara or Shibuya.

    #39171

    Jason
    Member

    Joel, yeah I do see what you mean that Suica can be used outside of the greater Tokyo area.  I hadn’t noticed that before.  On my first trip to Tokyo, my wife helped set me up with a pasmo and I never looked much into the differences then.

    #39275

    Vivian
    Member

    Hello everyone.

    right now I’m in Amsterdam, tomorrow is the day of our flight to Tokyo.

    I’m still looking for a pocket wifi device for the time in Japan but I couldn’t get one unfortunately. I just can’t live without internet… >_> But I will try to get one right at the airport. Maybe it works! :)

    Does anyone has experiences with that device? A friend of mine who is also in Tokyo right now has one and seems to be really happy with it. But he preordered one a long time before his arrival, that’s why he has one – and I don’t. Because he leaves Tokyo soon I won’t see him and now I’m hoping for finding a store right at the airport that rents those devices.

    #39280

    Joel
    Member

    A quick Google search turned up this list of links:

    http://www.japan-guide.com/forum/quereadisplay.html?0+91845

    Can’t really speak for anything, because I’ve never used them myself (I brought a laptop and used the Ethernet cable, and my friend connected wirelessly via my laptop) but it’s a start.

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