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Japan Travel |OT| We have to go back

Oct 25, 2017
2,153
I currently have a somewhat loose itinerary for my upcoming trip in February, wouldn't mind some feedback if that's possible. Suggestions and criticism are welcome. I'll be there for 3 weeks.

Tokyo for a week
- TBD day trips
Hiroshima for a few days
- Miyajima
Kyoto/Osaka for another few days
- Nara and Himeji Castle for day trips
Back to Tokyo for another week or a few days depending on how long I spend in other places
- Day trip to Nikko
- Disneyland & Sea

I'm thinking of squeezing in a couple of day trips on my first week in Tokyo, since I'll be solo. To where? TBD.

Tokyo is where I'm entering/leaving, so that's fairly concrete. Anything in between Tokyo is in loose planning stages. I'm looking at affordable trip options.
 
Oct 26, 2017
6,882
Saw it mentioned in another thread that New Years is very busy, and now I'm getting concerned about having to get from Osaka to Tokyo on the shinkansen on the 29th or 30th. So, am I in a bad way here?
 
Oct 28, 2017
452
We just booked our flight for april last week, premium select seats, hopefully its comfy for the non stop flight.

Couple questions:

Hows the jet lag going to Japan coming from the east coast? I heard its ok going there but coming back is tougher
Is the 7 day JR rail pass for $250 worth it if we are taking the bullet train from Tokyo to Osaka?
 
Oct 26, 2017
6,882
Just reserve your ticket a few days early. Should be no problem to get a seat.
I guess when I'll do a round trip at the station when I get there (couple days now). Or can I reserve them online?

We just booked our flight for april last week, premium select seats, hopefully its comfy for the non stop flight.

Couple questions:

Hows the jet lag going to Japan coming from the east coast? I heard its ok going there but coming back is tougher
Is the 7 day JR rail pass for $250 worth it if we are taking the bullet train from Tokyo to Osaka?
Last time I had a direct flight from JFK to Narita and managed to sleep a solid six or seven hours. Surprisingly didn't have any problems with jet lag.
 
Oct 29, 2017
2,614
I guess when I'll do a round trip at the station when I get there (couple days now). Or can I reserve them online?
.
Not sure about online. But I'd try to get a reserved seat ticket asap at this point. You can generally still ride the shinkansen in the general seating areas but those are first come first serve with seats. Depending how long your ride is it might be a while before you can sit. (and shinkansen seats are comfy lol)
 
Oct 28, 2017
452
If you're just going to Osaka and back then it's not worth it. Depends on what your plans in Osaka are, like if you're going to Hiroshima as well or such.
From Tokyo to Osaka and back costs about 250 on the bullet train, i thought the jr railpass works for the local trains too. That would make it worth it since it pays off my round trip bullet train tix right?
 
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MikeHattsu
Oct 25, 2017
2,401
From Tokyo to Osaka and back costs about 250 on the bullet train, i thought the jr railpass works for the local trains too. That would make it worth it since it pays off my round trip bullet train tix right?
You can get discount Shinkansen tickets from Tokyo and back here:
https://www.japanican.com/en/tour/detail/PAS1J02131MKC/

23000 JPY with an added Osaka Amazing Pass which normally costs 2500 JPY.

If you're from the US, Aus, Singapore, HK, Malaysia, Thailand or Taiwan you can download the smart-ex app, which lets you get discount shinkansen tickets from 11k JPY each way to Osaka and back:
https://smart-ex.jp/en/product/hayatoku/ex_21/


The JR Pass costs 29110 JPY, so you'll need:
- To take local JR trains around 25-30 times within Osaka for it to pay off. Taking the Osaka Metro which is not covered by the JR Pass is often better.
- If you're going to Kyoto and back instead, then you'll need to do that 5-6 times for it to pay off. Transportation within Kyoto is mostly not JR.
- If you're going to Nara and back instead, then you'll need to do that 4 times for it to pay off. Nara is mostly walkable, if you're going to outlying areas then you'll need to use buses which are not covered by the JR Pass.
 
Oct 28, 2017
452
I guess when I'll do a round trip at the station when I get there (couple days now). Or can I reserve them online?



Last time I had a direct flight from JFK to Narita and managed to sleep a solid six or seven hours. Surprisingly didn't have any problems with jet lag.
That makes me feel better, i was planning on popping a melatonin (SP?) after lunch and sleeping to adjust to Tokyo's time difference


You can get discount Shinkansen tickets from Tokyo and back here:
https://www.japanican.com/en/tour/detail/PAS1J02131MKC/

23000 JPY with an added Osaka Amazing Pass which normally costs 2500 JPY.

If you're from the US, Aus, Singapore, HK, Malaysia, Thailand or Taiwan you can download the smart-ex app, which lets you get discount shinkansen tickets from 11k JPY each way to Osaka and back:
https://smart-ex.jp/en/product/hayatoku/ex_21/


The JR Pass costs 29110 JPY, so you'll need:
- To take local JR trains around 25-30 times within Osaka for it to pay off. Taking the Osaka Metro which is not covered by the JR Pass is often better.
- If you're going to Kyoto and back instead, then you'll need to do that 5-6 times for it to pay off. Transportation within Kyoto is mostly not JR.
- If you're going to Nara and back instead, then you'll need to do that 4 times for it to pay off. Nara is mostly walkable, if you're going to outlying areas then you'll need to use buses which are not covered by the JR Pass.
The JR website made it seem like i was getting a good deal since i was going from Narita to Tokyo, Tokyo to Osaka round trip. I guess just normal passes should work
 
Oct 26, 2017
6,882
Not sure about online. But I'd try to get a reserved seat ticket asap at this point. You can generally still ride the shinkansen in the general seating areas but those are first come first serve with seats. Depending how long your ride is
Darn. I guess on the 21st I'll go and reserve tickets ahead of time. Have a few days in Tokyo before going to Osaka for about a week. Last time I didn't get to see Osaka for more than three or four hours, so I'm excited about that.

Reading up on the Luggage Delivery section in the OP, I'm looking into trying something like that. Maybe get them sent to Osaka, or easier, have them hold the luggage until I'm back in Tokyo.

That makes me feel better, i was planning on popping a melatonin (SP?) after lunch and sleeping to adjust to Tokyo's time difference
I think for me it was a psychological thing where on such a long flight, staying up the entire 14 hours was too daunting and it made me tired enough to sleep. It's odd considering I do get jetlagged on trips to Europe (6 to 8 hours). That might just be a 'me' thing.
 
Oct 25, 2017
2,483
Canada
Will be in Tokyo for 6 days next week, haven't had a major trip since the last time I was in Japan in Summer 2015 so it should be good. Anyone have any recommendations for a good Onsen within Tokyo?
 
Oct 29, 2017
378
Any recommendations for apres-ski around the Nagano/Hakuba area? Other local general recommendations (restaurants, attractions) also appreciated. Will be traveling in about a month. It'll be my second trip to the country.
 
Oct 25, 2017
260
Hey guys. I would like to know if anyone here knows a good website or two for rental apartments? I'm gonna be studying the japanese language for 2 years and I've decided to live alone. I'll be going sometime in the middle of next year so I'll have time to prepare.
 
Oct 26, 2017
6,882
I need to carve out some time to visit Okinawa and Hiroshima and other areas. My schedule is lighter this time around but initially I'm gonna have to be in Osaka ("have to be" like I won't enjoy it) and then back to Tokyo. I'm 95% certain I'm in Osaka for Christmas. I should probably triple check.
 
Oct 25, 2017
6,196
bit off topic but didn't have anywhere else to put it. Just found out that Coco Ichibanya has opened a curry restaurant in London (Leicester Square). Definitely going there this weekend.
 
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MikeHattsu
Oct 25, 2017
2,401
https://english.kyodonews.net/news/...30-million-plus-foreign-visitors-in-2018.html

The number of foreign visitors to Japan in 2018 topped 30 million on Tuesday, marking an all-time record on an annual basis, as the country attracted a high proportion of travelers from its Asian neighbors, the Japan Tourism Agency said.

The figure, eclipsing the previous record of 28.69 million set in 2017, is expected to reach around 31 million by the end of this year, although the pace of increase slowed after a number of natural disasters, including earthquakes and torrential rains, hit the country this summer, agency officials said.
"Our goal of 40 million visitors in 2020 is now within our reach," Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said at a press conference.

Japan first received more than 10 million foreign visitors in 2013. The number exceeded 20 million for the first time in 2016.
 
Oct 25, 2017
715
My finnair flight to Helsinki got cancelled. So they had to put me on a different plane to reach Osaka. But that flight will arrrive 7h later than the one I booked. Which means I will not be able to get on my flight to Okinawa. :|
 
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MikeHattsu
Oct 25, 2017
2,401
Oct 26, 2017
6,882
Gonna be in Osaka for a couple days with some free time outside of obligations. Anything must see? Last time I was in Osaka, it was only for about two hours in the morning.

All I got to say is why the hell the heater is on to like full blast?! Holy moly is ball sweating hot in the train and shopping malls
Living on the East coast most of my life, the current temperature is nearly perfect (hanging in the 50s, occasionally dropping to the 40s). But everyone I see is full on heavy coats, scarf, et al. I’m the odd one out here thinking it’s too hot places where it’s a reprieve from the cold for others.
 
Oct 25, 2017
5,101
That's the trip booked. My Suica card should still work and has just over 1000 yen still on it.

Should be a fun trip. Birthday is on the 14th so it's like an early birthday trip :D