Travel, Teach, Live in Japan
Japan is a very popular travel destination. From the bustling urban centers of Tokyo and Osaka to the serene temples of Kyoto and the crisp air of Mount Fuji, traveling to Japan can be a very dynamic, exciting and versatile experience. In order to ensure that you have the very best traveling experience possible, it's important to make sure you pack efficiently; read on for some tips.
In Japan, you are going to be doing a lot of walking, whether it's on the streets of Shibuya and Shinjuku in Tokyo, hiking up Mount Fuji, touring the temples of Kyoto or transferring on bullet trains (shinkansen). Because of this, it's highly important that you pack comfortable walking shoes, whether they are sneakers, Crocs or tennis shoes. As long as they are comfortable and can handle walking long distances all day long, you will be fine. Japan is a walking society, so it's very important to remember this.
Japan generally accepts all of the major credit cards that we use in the United States, Canada, Europe and other countries. For example, you would be hard pressed to find a store, hotel or restaurant that doesn't take Visa or Mastercard. It's essential to pack your credit cards, and probably about $2,000 in cash.
You're going to be doing a lot of walking and staying on your feet while in Japan. It's a good idea to pack pain relievers such as Tylenol, Aspirin, Bayer or Aleve. In Japan, you will be able to find some familiar over-the-counter pain relievers, such as Bufferin, but it's always convenient to use something you already know works well on you. Also, be sure to pack any prescription medicines you might have.
Weather can be rather unpredictable in Japan. In the summertime, you can experience sweltering hot, humid, sunny days, only to have your day drastically change and turn into a torrential downpour akin to a monsoon! Be sure to bring raincoat, as you will most likely encounter this situation. Be sure to bring both warm and cold weather options for your Japan trip.
Gift exchanging is a very important part of Japanese culture. In Japan, you wouldn't dream of visiting another person's home without bringing an omiage (gift) to the person. It might be a good idea to bring a few small gifts from your home country, whether it's a knickknack or stuffed animal. It will greatly show your appreciation for being invited into a Japanese home as well as your deep respect for the culture.