Japan Travel Tips (Part 1)

Is this the first time for you in Japan? These are some tips for travelling in Japan. 
I try to list down as below. Hope these will be useful for you.

1. Water: Tap water is clean, can drink.

2. Toilets: 
    2.1 Toilets are also available at train station. 
    2.2 At department store, some floors toilets are available for women or men. Some floors are available for both. Can check from directory.  

3. Coin Laundry: This service is available at hotel and hostel. Price starts from 200 yen.

4. Hotel: 
   4.1 Some hotels has drink vending machine only on 1st floor but some has every floor. 
   4.2 Some hotels has microwave and ice.
   4.3 If the name of hotel ended with "Ekimae", it means hotel is close to train station.
   4.4 Japanese smoke a lot. Don't forget to specify that you need smoking room or non-smoking room. 
   4.5 Some hotels have late check in at 16:00 and early check out at 10:00 a.m.
If you arrive hotel before check-in time, can ask reception to keep your luggage.      
   4.6 Mostly, the hotel does not include breakfast except the business hotel such as Toyoko Inn, Smile Hotel, Super Hotel or travel with tour group.

5. Internet: 
    5.1 Most of hotel has free wi-fi. 
    5.2 You can also rent pocket wi-fi which you can take it with you everywhere. Can rent pocket wi-fi from agency from your home country or at the Japan airport. If you pass tunnel, the signal will show no service.

6. Train:

    6.1 JR Pass is the train ticket with unlimited travel, including local train, express train, shinkansen, bus. JR pass divided based on region or JR All pass can be used with JR trains nationwide. Can reserve seats for free. Some of pass need to purchase online or from agency in your home country and exchange the ticket at counter in Japan.
   6.2 On weekend has special fare if you take the train. For example, Osaka has weekend pass (One day pass) for subway which is 600 yen while weekday is 800 yen.
   6.3 Sometimes round trip ticket is cheaper than one way ticket.
   6.4 Ticket machines at train station have both English and Japanese. 
   6.5 Some trains has women car.
   6.6 Switch the mobile phone into silent mode and not talk on the phone while on the train.
   6.7 Try to avoid rush hour (08:00-09:00 and 17:00-19:00) especially the big station.
   6.8 Not every train stations have elevator.
   6.9 Coin lockers are available. Price varies by the size of luggage. 
   6.10 Some trains has both reserved and unreserved cars.
   6.11 Rapid train is faster than local train as the train does not stop at every station.

7. Bus
    7.1 Entrance gate (入り口) is at the back and exit gate (出口) is at the front.
    7.2 When get on the bus, take the ticket at the entrance gate. There is number on the ticket. When you would like to get off the bus, look at the number on your ticket and see the fare tables at the front. Drop the ticket together with the fare at the box near the driver.
If you pay more than the fare, the machine would not return the changes. You must exchange the coins at another box near the driver first (orange sign).

  7.3 Bus comes on time but can be a little bit delay due to the traffic.
  7.4 Fare can be paid by IC Card (i.e.pasmo, suica)
  7.5 Bus timetable on weekday (平日) and weekend & holidays (土・日祭日) are different. 
        Timetable is available at bus stop.
  7.6 Limousine Bus from airport to city is another good alternative. Fare is not expensive.

8. Taxi: Fare is expensive. The door is closed and opened automatically. If you cannot speak Japanese, print out the map and address in Japanese.

Continue at Part 2

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