Language, technologies and prices may become real nightmares even to experienced travelers who have decided to visit Japan. However, with well-thought-out preparation the voyage will leave only pleasant impressions.
Here are some tips for which you will thank you, tested.
- Rent a pocket Wi-Fi router instead of buying a prepaid local SIM card. You can down the price of it by booking it online before travelling or you can purchase one at the telecom company counter in the airport. After that you will be able to connect all your devices to the unlimited Internet and make cheap local calls with help of IM apps.
- A Japan Rail Pass is a perfect way to save a lot of money on travelling inside the country, but you have to book it beforehand, it is impossible to do it in Japan. You can book the Green Pass for $374 for a week in the “superior class” carriages and the Ordinary Pass for $280 for a week – this one works with economy class places only. To do it you have to buy an exchange order of the Japan Rail in your country, get a “Temporary Visitor” stamp and bring the order and document to the station in Japan.
- Consider purchasing a Pasmo or Suica card for travelling in the subway and metro area. Otherwise you will be bamboozled by buying individual tickets for each journey. Take into consideration that some stations don’t accept Pasmo, some Suica, so it would be better to have them both, though as usual stations accept both of them.
- Use an app for public transport system – for example, Hyperdia, that offers free 30 days trial. The schedule of public transport in Japan is extremely accurate so the app will be really handy.
- Domestic flights go with discounts, for example, Star Alliance Japan Airpass proposes upyo five domestic flights for $96 each.
- Choose Haneda airport instead of Narita, as the first one is far more convenient.
- If you fly to Narita, use N’EX trains, that will ride you to the Omiya station for $14 instead of usual $25.
- Use Google Translate to translate signs, it has a camera input option.
- Carry a printed address of your hotel with you.
- It is really hard to find the ATM that accepts foreign cards – post offices will help you. And don’t forget to check the possibility of your card for withdrawals in a foreign country.