Are you heading to Japan? You must be thrilled! Imagine finally seeing the iconic tourist spots and trying various activities. We bet you can no longer wait for your true Japanese experience! Japan’s rich historic culture continuously invites travelers to explore the country. Numerous heritage sites and tourist attractions are waiting for you!
You must have already prepared your itinerary. But just like any other traveler, you might be worried about transportation. How do you go from one place to another? How much should you allot for the fares? Getting lost in a foreign country is probably not a part of your schedule. Maximize your time in Japan by choosing the right mode of transportation!
Table of contents
Travel in Japan: 3 Best Modes of Transportation
Another thing that makes Japan distinct from other countries is transportation. Metro, subways, planes, and buses. Japan has got them all. And they’re incredibly punctual and efficient. So if you have been fretting over traveling in Japan, there’s no need to!
Once you learn about the ways to travel long distances in Japan, you can maximize your time and budget accordingly. Depending on your dream locations, you can either travel by air, train, or bus. Read on and start planning your unforgettable Japan experience!
Travel by Air
Japan stretches for approximately 2,400 kilometers. The country is huge! Do you want to celebrate Japan’s famous Snow Festival in Sapporo but you’re in Osaka? What if you don’t want to pass up the chance to visit Fukuoka Castle, but you’re in Tokyo? Go limitless in your journey and fly!
Domestic flights are available in Japan and traveling by air or plane is the most ideal for extra-long distances. You get to save time and money! Several bus and train rides will cost more than a single flight. And since you will reach your destination faster, rest assured that you will not spend half of your trip trying to reach places.
Japan Airlines (JAL) and All Nippon Airways (ANA) groups dominate the domestic air travels in Japan. Aside from these two leading airlines, there are several smaller airline companies that can fly you to places within the country as well. Regular airfares can be costly, but there are so many discounts that you can disregard the regular fares!
JAL and ANA have special fares and air passes for foreigners in Japan. These exclusive passes can take you anywhere within the country, and a flight only costs a little over 10,000 JPY! For domestic routes that require longer flights like Tokyo to Hokkaido, Kyushu, or Okinawa, this price is very much competitive. Other discount offers are also seasonal, so you have to find the perfect timing.
Comfortable seats, convenient services, and a relaxing trip overall. What more could you ask for? Check out great discounts and travel by air. Fly around within Japan hassle-free!
Travel by Train
You must have read about the extraordinary aquarium in Tokyo, the Maxell Aqua Park Shinagawa. You have to have that unique aquarium experience! And of course, what’s a trip to Japan without witnessing the cherry blossoms? Take a train and get around Japan as fast as a bullet! Even the train ride itself is already a Japanese experience.
Trains are the major mode of transportation in Japan, and there are five categories: Local, Rapid, Express, Limited Express, and the Super Express or the shinkansen（新幹線）. Shinkansen or bullet trains are a fast mode of transportation, reaching a maximum speed of 320 kilometers per hour. It connects the major cities and different metropolitan areas in Japan. Only Japan Railways operate these, and you can avail of the ordinary or green (first class) seats.
Make a ride even more cost-effective with the all-you-can-ride nationwide pass, Japan Rail (JR) Pass. If you will be staying in Japan for 15-90 days, this pass is what you need! A shinkansen ticket can cost at least 13,000 JPY, and a week-long unlimited travel with a JR Pass is only for at least 29,000 JPY. What a great deal! You may also opt for prepaid IC cards instead, like Suica and ICOCA, for trains, subways, and even bus rides! They are rechargeable and usable for public transportation payments.
Generally, traveling by train is convenient for both local and foreign passengers. And signages in the stations are in both Japanese and English. No need to spend too much time figuring out what they mean! And finally, trains in Japan are strictly punctual. Check the departure and arrival schedule and reach your destination right on time!
Travel by Bus
Seeing the famous Mt. Fuji in Kawaguchiko sounds very mesmerizing. Relaxing on the beaches of Ibaraki as well. Don’t stop yourself from including seemingly hard-to-reach places in Japan in your itinerary. You can always take a bus ride!
Highway buses or kōsoku bus（高速バス）are affordable alternatives to trains. For long and medium distance travel within Japan, buses may take longer, but they’re economical. There are several bus companies in Japan and all of them offer discounts too! For regular bus tickets, there are the one-way tickets, round trip, and booklets. Your fare will solely depend on the route, but round trip tickets are usually 10% cheaper than two one-way tickets.
Just like with trains, you can also purchase passes that are great deals! One is the Japan Bus Pass, which can help you significantly reduce your costs! Willing to spend some nights on a bus? Get a Japan Bus Pass that’s available as 3-day, 5-day, or 7-day versions. A pass costs 10,000-15,000 JPY, and it’s also exclusive for foreigners!
From Tokyo to Osaka, Nagoya, or Kyoto, you can take the bus when traveling within cities and in long distances. Plus they can take you to small towns that planes and trains can’t reach! The trip may take longer than trains or planes, but you get to see Japan up close! Nothing beats a bus ride that lets you marvel over Japan’s scenery, right?
Travel within Japan conveniently and practically. Consider your time, budget, and the type of experience you desire. Do you need to book a flight? Or do you need to take the train or bus? Easily explore Japan without losing too much time or overspending! Choosing the best mode of transportation can do so much. It’s a significant part of your Japan experience!
You can always ask a local so you can comfortably navigate around Japan. Avail promos and discounts and go as far as you can! Japan’s modes of transportations are incomparable, so which rides are you going to take? Make your Japan experience worth it!
Motto Japan, the community platform to support foreigners with the foundation for life in Japan, including Japanese study, job opportunities, and housing service. Motto Japan Media will provide a wide variety of information for Japanese fans all over the world, to create a cross-cultural environment and enrich the life of foreign residents in Japan!