Japan is considered to be an expensive country to travel to, but with these cheap tips and tricks, living off vending-machines is not even an option. Despite Tokyo being infamous for its high cost of living, it is a dream destination for many. Even budget travelers are taking a chance in this country due to its east-meets-west beauty that is truly captivating.
A vacation to the Land of the Rising Sun is absolutely possible, but it requires strategic planning and a "cowboy" mentality. The Seattle Times listed 5 tips for traveling to Japan on a budget, when followed, can considerably save tons of money!
Travel During Off Peak
Significant amount of the travel budget goes to the plane ticket, but traveling during off-peak season can drastically lower the flight cost. Research about the public holidays will help, specifically, a high concentration on when Japanese holidays take place. The three public holidays mostly populated are New Year's Golden Week (late April to early May) and the Bon festival (mid-August), as detailed by Seattle Times.
Lodging is the second most essential item on the itinerary and a multitude of sleeping options are available, if people are going cheapskate. Some budget travelers tend to spend the night at the booths in manga cafes, or "kissas," which are all-nighter internet cafes/manga libraries with showers and snacks too.
There are also youth hostels with private rooms, as well as capsule hotels which are sleeping pods with enough space to maneuver in, some even have separate storage areas.
"Ryokans," or traditional guest houses offer tatami rooms and futon while huests can go experiencing genuine Japan.
Go with the Chains
It is advisable to choose fast food chains over fancy dinners while in Japan. At the same time, relying on supermarkets and convenience stores for most of the trip can't be as bad as people think. Numerous reasonably priced food stalls are also accessible in cities like noodles, bento and rice dishes.
Buses Over Trains
Traveling to different cities can cost a fortune and so, taking buses over trains are much preferred for cheaper options. As efficient and as convenient commuting in Japan can be, it may cost 230 yen for a single trip to any destination. But, there is a 500 yen all-day bus pass, according to Rappler which could be worth availing.
Trains are a fast and reliable way of arriving in any location, but cost a premium in Japan. So budget travelers are encouraged to take buses than trains if they have the luxury of time. On the other hand, visitors can purchase Japan Rail Pass or JR Pass which could last for a few weeks, allowing tourist off-and-on local trains and buses.
Check Out Discounted Attractions
Another key to seeing the real Japan with a budget is being spontaneous! Money won't be an issue when limiting a to-do list to only free and discounted attractions. However, tourists can avail the Grut Pass, which costs about 2000 yen, let visitors to free or discounted attractions to over 79 landmarks and destinations in Japan.
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