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Ingenious Techniques To Saving Money While Traveling In Japan this 2022

Saving Money While Traveling In Japan—Japan is one of the world’s most interesting countries, but it’s also one of the most expensive. It’s no secret that the country is more expensive than its Southeast neighbours. We’ve been to the Land of the Rising Sun a few times and have found the city life of Tokyo and the Kansai region, so we’ve got some inexpensive tips for you. From getting around, eating out, saving money on lodging, performing free activities, and enjoying the nightlife, here are 5 methods to save money while travelling in Japan.

Fly in and out of various cities, selecting the cheapest airports

If possible, we recommend flying into one city and out of another to make the most of your stay in Japan (Tokyo and Osaka for instance). It’s also usually less expensive, especially if you’re already in Asia. After you’ve booked your flights, you’ll have a variety of alternatives for getting about the nation. If possible, we have discovered that travelling into Osaka (KIX) is less expensive than flying into Tokyo’s Narita Airport (NRT). It’s undoubtedly one of the most cost-effective methods to travel in Japan!

Making The Most Of Your Adventures By Taking The Overnight Bus

If the JR Japan Rail Pass (see below) isn’t worth it for you and your time in Japan is restricted, an overnight bus to traverse big distances can be an option. It is frequently less expensive than a local flight or a bullet train, and you skip the time spent travelling to and from the airport.

The Tokyo-Osaka Overnight Highway Express Bus, in my experience, can take you from Osaka to the heart of Tokyo (Shinjuku) in just 7 hours. It cost less than 50 euros, making it the cheapest way to travel in Japan and one of the finest ways to save money.

You can rent a space in a manga café to rest, shower, and get a cup of coffee if you’re worried about being exhausted or not feeling fresh when you arrive.

Saving Money On Train Tickets With A Commuter Pass

The JR Pass – Unlimited Rail Travel for 7, 14, or 21 Days, which permits unlimited trips and includes usage of the Shinkansen, Japan’s bullet train, is available to foreign travellers.

It’s fairly pricey, so we only recommend it for longer vacations or excursions when you’ll be moving around a lot. Regional multi-day passes and commuter trains, on the other hand, can help you save a lot of money.

Taking A Walk Or Riding A Bike

Walking and riding a bicycle are a joy in Japan because it is such a clean and well-organized country. You might not understand how simple it is to walk somewhere instead of taking public transportation, which can be costly, especially in urban areas. To make the most of a future vacation, we’re thinking about flying with our Brompton folding bicycle

Food That Is Both Affordable And Delicious

Even on a budget, food is not an area where compromises should be made. After all, the point of travel is to learn about a new culture, and cuisine is a big part of that. This is especially true in Japan, where the cuisine and restaurants are absolutely exceptional. Not only the food, but also the way people eat out!

Ramen Noodle Bars

They’re ideal for single travellers because the layout allows you to eat on your own. Some of them have a machine where you may choose your food and pay in advance, which makes the ordering process easier. When you don’t speak the language, this is useful. It’s also reasonably priced: a bowl of ramen will set you back between 800 and 1200 yen.

Our recommendation: The standing version of the ramen bar is much cheaper: soba noodles cost around 500 yen.

Sushi Restaurants with Conveyor Belts

Sushi may fill you up for as little as 100 yen per dish in Japan. Seeing and grabbing plates you wish to test out on the moving belt is a lot of fun. Of course, the normal menu is available for the same price.

Konbinis (Convenience Stores)

Although it isn’t the most traditional or cultural alternative, convenience stores offer a wide variety of foods, including rolls, noodles, and onigris (seaweed-wrapped triangles or rices). In Japan, it is likewise open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The food can also be heated for you to consume inside or on the go by the staff. Find a Lawson, a 7-Eleven, or a Family Mart.

Restaurants for Families

In some ways, these are Japan’s equivalent of American “diners.” Sukiya, for example, offers a wide variety of meals (curry, ramen) at a reasonable price. These businesses also have extended hours of operation.


An Izakaya is a traditional Japanese drinking establishment. After work, it’s usually where salarymen (or anyone else) go to enjoy tapas-style meals and drinks. Unlike sushi conveyor belts and ramen bars, you’ll be seated in a small booth, which provides both seclusion and conviviality.

Food on the Street

Have you ever heard of Osaka’s famed Takoyaki (fried squid balls) or Okonomiyaki (Japanese pancake)? They’re sold in stalls on the streets. While there isn’t as much street food as in other Asian nations, it is nonetheless great!

Our recommendation: Osaka is a must-visit for street food! We strongly advise you to visit the city. We’ve discovered that Osaka is one of the cities in Japan with the most affordable activities and ways to save money. If you’re looking for some free activities to do in Osaka, go no further than our article below!

Where Should Solo Travellers Stay in Japan

Typically, budget tourists can select between a hostel and a capsule hotel, which is a Japanese institution. Japanese hostels, unlike their western equivalents, maintain a sense of solitude and cleanliness that is greatly valued. Dedicated lockers and a privacy screen for your bed are common. It’s one of the numerous methods to save money in Japan while travelling.

The typical capsule hotel was designed for late-night workers and solely males. It can get a little too silent at times, and the sleeping pods resemble a space shuttle bed. If you’re just looking for a place to sleep, it’s clean and quiet.

Where Should Couples and Groups Stay

While some hostels include double pods, couples might be better suited booking a hotel room or renting an apartment on Airbnb. Japanese apartments with a single room and futons that convert to beds are common.

Budget-Friendly Activities in Japan

Many tourist attractions in Japan are completely free. This is especially true of parks and shrines, which alone are worth a visit to the Land of the Rising Sun. You can also get some free exercise by walking around metropolitan areas and narrow alleys.

Japan is known for its Shinto shrines and temples. Fushimi Inari (Kyoto) and Senso-ji (Tokyo) are two of the most impressive, and admission is free.

Japan offers some of the world’s most interesting and diverse parks and gardens! Depending on the time of year, Shinjuku and Yoyogi (Tokyo) are massive oasis with gorgeous vegetation. The Arashiyama Bamboo Forest in Kyoto is a truly unique experience.

The majority of our time in Japan was spent visiting urban landscapes. If you enjoy photography, you can have a lot of fun photographing the local culture in all of its forms. Every street photographer’s playground of choice is Osaka’s Dotombori and Tsutsenta-ku, Tokyo’s Shinjuku and Ginza, and Kyoto’s traditional streets.

Our recommendation is to go to an arcade! While the games are not free to play, they are a fun and graphically spectacular experience.

Saving Money While Traveling In Japan

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Ingenious Techniques To Saving Money While Traveling In Japan this 2022 3

Of course, compared to the backpacker hotspots of Southeast Asia, partying in Japan will be more expensive. However, there are a few money-saving techniques and crucial nightlife places to avoid missing out on.

Izakayas, as previously said, are an excellent spot to start the night and drink cheaply.

You can also just go to a nice public spot like Dotonbori (Osaka), Golden Gai, or Shibuya and order drinks from the konbini (Tokyo). Just don’t be the person that draws attention in public, as Japanese people are known for their respect and discipline.

Some establishments also offer discounts in the early hours of the morning. Bars and clubs provide all-you-can-drink specials to heavy drinkers (Nomihoudai). We once discovered a deal in Tokyo’s Roppongi neighbourhood that included unlimited beverages for three hours for only 1000 yen — how amazing is that? It’s one of our suggestions for saving money while travelling in Japan, especially if you want to enjoy the nightlife.

Jumanji, Bar Mist, Bar Oath (Tokyo), and Ammona are a few establishments that include drinks with your ticket (Osaka).

Last Thoughts

While Japan is not a cheap destination, it is still possible to visit without spending a fortune. In comparison to other destinations, we would advise planning ahead because mistakes in Japan are easy to make and costly. Early hotel reservations and pre-arranged transportation can make your vacation a lot easier, especially if you’re visiting a country where English isn’t generally spoken.

If you’re planning a trip to Japan or have lived there before, we’d love to hear about any other money-saving tips for travelling in Japan. Let us know if you have any additional suggestions in the comments section below, as we aim to return in the future.

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Adam is an internationally recognised author on financial matters, with over 735.2 million answer views on Quora.com, a widely sold book on Amazon, and a contributor on Forbes.


Saving money while traveling in Japan is the best thing you can do to ensure that your Japan adventures go smoothly. Learn how to budget!

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