Travel, Teach, Live in Japan
Japan has always been a nice to go country, with their superb service which is well known in the world and the never-ending scenic spots found in the country. In addition, if you are a hot spring fan, Japan is one of those countries which you should not give a miss.
However, despite all its alluring attractions, Japan may prove to be a trip disaster if you are not well prepared. Check out the following 5 tips for a smooth and fruitful trip in Japan.
If you are planning to tour around Japan for more than 7 days and want to explore further than Tokyo, it is highly recommended that you buy a JR pass. This will enable you to hop on unlimited shinkansen (bullet train) rides and JR trains throughout your journey. Considering that a shinkansen ride from Tokyo to Osaka costs more than 10,000 yen per trip, it is definitely a good catch. Besides, one can easily move around on JR normal trains.
Never hop onto a taxi from the airport to your destination unless you are very rich. A taxi ride starts from around 660 yen and costs more than USD200 for you to get from the Narita Airport to Tokyo city.
If you are on a free and easy trip, keep your luggage light or travel with a backpack. Some train stations, especially those off city areas, only have a ascending escalator, hence you want to be sure that you can lug your luggage down and up the station stairs.
Carry enough yen on you for your meals and shopping sprees. Japan is still a cash dominant society though most major shopping malls and restaurants accepts credit card. If you feel insecure walking around with too much cash, try to pay your hotel bills and some shopping with your credit card and leave the rest of the cash for your meals. Some major departmental stores offer cash discount for branded goods if you pay on the spot by cash, which is another incentive to bring more cash.
Learning some simple Japanese will be useful for moving around Japan, though most Japanese are very helpful. For the recent years, despite mushrooming English schools in Japan, most Japanese still find it difficult to converse in English.
Check out Travel Asia for my travel experience.
Author has learnt Japanese since university days and also worked in Japan before. She is constantly trying to learn new Asian languages though at her own pace. She currently started a travel photo blog at http://travelasiaphotos.blogspot.com and is starting on writing a book.