Travel

Japan Travel Thread

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  • Sep 23rd, 2018 10:18 pm
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Sr. Member
Feb 4, 2010
989 posts
336 upvotes
I have a 9.5 hour stopover in Tokyo (Narita) end of March. I arrive 6:30AM and my flight boards at 4PM.

I have been to Japan over 10 years but I am looking suggestions for what to do in this short time frame - given my long flights prefer something involves mostly outdoor walking (and a good place for lunch!!). In particular, a not-too-crowded places to see cherry blossoms would be appreciated. Open to staying in Narita or going into Tokyo.
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Dec 16, 2015
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Canada
Once arrived at haneda, where do i go for wifi hotspot device and plan?

Also any cheap cad to yen exchange rate there? It was hard finding yen at TD so only bought the max they haveSmiling Face With Open Mouth And Smiling Eyes

Thanks!
Sr. Member
Feb 4, 2010
989 posts
336 upvotes
Redsanta wrote:
Jan 12th, 2018 5:05 pm
Once arrived at haneda, where do i go for wifi hotspot device and plan?

Also any cheap cad to yen exchange rate there? It was hard finding yen at TD so only bought the max they haveSmiling Face With Open Mouth And Smiling Eyes

Thanks!
I almost never buy currency from Canada (except US$ which I always carry for emergency situations). I find it's almost always better and cheaper to withdraw money once I arrive at my destination- airports always have (working) ATMs. Try to guesstimate how much you need for your entire or where it makes sense, withdraw the limit to reduce banking fees. You can further limit fees from Canadian banks by using a Global Alliance partner (e.g. Scotia/Tangerine) or getting a premium account (e.g. TD's all-inclusive).
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Aug 26, 2002
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Toronto, ON
Jazmina wrote:
Jan 12th, 2018 6:02 pm
I almost never buy currency from Canada (except US$ which I always carry for emergency situations). I find it's almost always better and cheaper to withdraw money once I arrive at my destination- airports always have (working) ATMs. Try to guesstimate how much you need for your entire or where it makes sense, withdraw the limit to reduce banking fees. You can further limit fees from Canadian banks by using a Global Alliance partner (e.g. Scotia/Tangerine) or getting a premium account (e.g. TD's all-inclusive).
Do ATMs in Japan generally support Interac? Can I use my TD debit card and withdraw from my TD all-inclusive chequing account?
Sr. Member
Feb 4, 2010
989 posts
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rvs007 wrote:
Jan 12th, 2018 6:11 pm
Do ATMs in Japan generally support Interac? Can I use my TD debit card and withdraw from my TD all-inclusive chequing account?
I have travelled to over 60 countries and have never had an issue withdrawing money. What I used to do several years ago (technology has advanced so much since then) and still sometimes do, is a take a Visa (Visa is more widely recognized than Mastercard) that I don't really use and put a debit balance as a backup as they are (or were known) to be more reliable than Interac. If for some reason my debit card doesn't work -I can withdraw the amount I put on my Visa without being charged the cash back fees. However, I highly doubt you'll have any issues in Japan of all places. I travel mostly in developing countries.
Member
Mar 15, 2004
297 posts
35 upvotes
Toronto
cardero wrote:
Jan 11th, 2018 11:06 pm
Bought a JR Rail East Nagano/Niigata Pass. Any suggestions for smaller cities that I should consider visiting in the region? So far, I am looking at Matsumoto & Takayama. Thanks.
Are you just using the pass or will you have access to a car?
Member
Mar 15, 2004
297 posts
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Toronto
Redsanta wrote:
Jan 12th, 2018 5:05 pm
Once arrived at haneda, where do i go for wifi hotspot device and plan?
Better to reserve your device online. Lots to choose from. You can get them to send it to the airport or hotel for pickup
While there are counters for pocket wifi devices at the airport, I don't think their prices are very competitive.
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Dec 16, 2015
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Canada
Is there a weekly subway pass? What is it called and where do i get it? Thanks
Member
Sep 14, 2009
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Vancouver
Jereina wrote:
Jan 12th, 2018 11:38 pm
Are you just using the pass or will you have access to a car?
Just the pass (not interested in driving), but am totally fine with busses...to check out suggested places & towns you find interesting.
Member
Jan 8, 2012
442 posts
174 upvotes
Williams Lake
Metro pass is complicated, as there are two seperate systems. The metro system and the rail system.

Most people get a pasmo or suica card, which is just a card that you charge up then use on either the rail system or the metro system. No discounts.

But you can also get a one- two- or three- day pass for the metro, as w4B has pointed out, which, if used properly, will save you money.

The problem is these passes don't work on the rail system, which offers many very useful routes, including the Yamanote Line which circles the heart of the city, so you have to do some calculation to figure out if the money you'd save is worth the time you're going to spend in not using the rail system.

I used the metro pass and tried to stick to the metro as much as possible, and I used the Suica card when the rail system was the better option. I also used the system quite a few times per day, which meant I saved a fair bit of money.

If you're not going to be using it very often, I'd recommend just getting a Suica or a Pasmo card.

Hyperdia.com is an excellent site for figuring out routes, btw.
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wudtsilake wrote:
Jan 13th, 2018 6:02 pm
The problem is these passes don't work on the rail system, which offers many very useful routes, including the Yamanote Line which circles the heart of the city, so you have to do some calculation to figure out if the money you'd save is worth the time you're going to spend in not using the rail system.

I used the metro pass and tried to stick to the metro as much as possible, and I used the Suica card when the rail system was the better option. I also used the system quite a few times per day, which meant I saved a fair bit of money.

If you're not going to be using it very often, I'd recommend just getting a Suica or a Pasmo card.

Hyperdia.com is an excellent site for figuring out routes, btw.


Where is best place to get the card? Do convenience store carry them?
Sr. Member
Jan 10, 2009
626 posts
183 upvotes
Toronto
foreigncontent wrote:
Jan 15th, 2018 4:36 am
Where is best place to get the card? Do convenience store carry them?
You can pick them up from an automated machine in the subway stations. Same machine that you use to charge them.
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Sep 22, 2007
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Hmm would anyone know how long it takes to clear customs at Haneda airport? I'm landing around 3:30 pm
Member
Jan 8, 2012
442 posts
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Williams Lake
I've landed at Haneda three times, and it's never taken more than 45 minutes to go through.

Last time, the arrivals hall was full, there were hundreds of people, maybe 300? 400?, but the line did not stop moving. It was quite something.

No guarantees your experience will match that, but it is a very efficient country, and things, in general, work like clock-work.

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