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For Budget Travelers

Essential Info

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Like many countries, Japan can be an expensive place to visit if you don't plan ahead, however there are a wide variety of budget accommodation options, transportation passes and sightseeing discounts, which help to make Japan an affordable destination for even the most budget conscious traveler. It is worthwhile taking the time to decide which options will best suit your stay.

Transportation

If you are flying to Japan with one of the country's national carriers, Japan Airlines (JAL) or All Nippon Airways (ANA), and intend to take a domestic flight during your stay, it is worth buying your domestic ticket in conjunction with your international ticket. Both JAL and ANA can offer considerable savings on the cost of internal flights purchased in this way. Contact JAL or ANA for further details. See the transportation section of this site to find out more about discounts on domestic airfares.

With the Japan Rail Pass, foreign visitors to Japan can enjoy discounted travel on nearly all services of the extensive JR Transportation Network, including the Shinkansen or 'bullet train'. There are also a variety of other rail passes, which offer significant reductions on rail travel in Japan. Long distances buses and local train services are other low-cost transport options.

Taxis in Japan are expensive so long taxi rides are best avoided. Fortunately Japan's efficient and affordable local transportation networks mean that taxis are rarely required.

Railways
Railways & Buses
Domestic Air Service
Passenger Boats
Buses & Taxis
JAL
ANA
Japan Rail Pass

Accommodations

The cost and quality of accommodation in Japan is comparable with that of most other developed countries and there is something to suit every taste and wallet.

Accommodation Search

Attraction

Outlet malls
Japan for Free(Practical Guides)

Dining Out

Dining out in Japan doesn't have to be expensive. Restaurant dining in Tokyo for example is certainly no more expensive than in most other world capitals and is often better value for money. Wherever you travel, restaurants in popular tourist areas will always cost more. Follow the locals and you will generally find both lower prices and more authentic Japanese cuisine. Avoid restaurants that don't list their prices outside the door. The people who can afford to eat in these places don't need to know how much they will have to pay. Budget dining can usually be enjoyed at more casual establishments such as Izakaya (Japanese pubs), Shokudo (general eating places, often with set meals), and Okonomiyaki restaurants ('Japanese pizza' places).

Comparing Prices

Recent improvements in the foreign exchange rate have meant more favorable prices for overseas visitors to Japan. The price chart in the following page is designed to give an idea of what you can expect to pay for a variety of everyday and travel-related items in Japan.

Recent improvements in the foreign exchange rate have meant more favorable prices for overseas visitors to Japan. The price chart below is designed to give an idea of what you can expect to pay for a variety of everyday and travel-related items in Japan..

FOOD and DRINK
Can of drink 130 yen
Cup of coffee 100-400 yen
Can of beer 200 yen
1/2 liter of mineral water 120 yen
Bowl of Japanese noodles 300-700 yen
Breakfast service in a coffee shop 400-700 yen
Big Mac 350yen

TRANSPORTATION and TOURS
7-Day Japan Rail Pass(Ordinary) 29,110 yen
Tokyo Metro 1-Day Open Ticket 710 yen
Toei 1-Day Economy Pass 700 yen
Airport Limousine Bus
(Narita Airport to Central Tokyo)
3,000 yen
2km bus ride 210 yen
2km taxi ride 730 yen
One day guided coach tour
(from Tokyo to Mt. Fuji)
10,000 - 15,000 yen

ACCOMMODATIONS
Youth Hostel 3,000 yen per night
Guesthouse
(single room)
From 3,000 yen per night
Economy Class Hotel
(single room)
From 5,000 yen per night
Mid-range Hotel
(double room)
From 10,000 yen per night

OTHER
Postcard stamp 82 yen
Karaoke(2 hours) 600 yen
Hair cut From 1,000 yen

NOTE: The prices listed are approximate prices in Tokyo in Japanese yen as of April 2014

Related Information

 

Budget Travel Info