Japan Budget Trip
So you’ve finally decided you want to follow your heart and go to Japan. But now, you ask yourself, where do you start? There are so many things to do and you dont have a lot of money to spend for your trip. Worry not, I am here to share my experience on how I prepared for my Japan budget trip last March 2020.
You may have come to this page because you are planning your next DIY Japan trip and want to get some ideas. If you havent read my other Japan articles, you may want to start here.
Is there such thing as a BUDGET trip in Japan?
Well certainly and I can give you a testament on how we spent every Japanese Yen carefully.
Tip # 1 Book on KLOOK
This one is the best way to save money. Time it right and you may get more discount when they go on SALE. You can also buy it with another item like a sim card that you will pick up on the airport / strategic locations in Japan. Use it to buy your tours, japan rail pass, sim card, rent pocket wifi, and transporation.
Here’s how much we paid for the JR pass in KLOOK
One more advantage when booking with KLOOK is that you get credit from your purchase that you can use towards buying another tour. Note the prices may change with out prior notice.
Tip # 2 Compare prices before booking your hotel / Inn
This one will take the most of your time. You have to time it right because the more you wait, the more expensive the rooms may get. Also, different booking sites have different prices so compare trivago, agoda, traveloka and even google maps for the same property to get the best deal.
It is also important that you have an idea on what you WANT and NEED in a hotel. When I booked our trip, my number 1 criteria is the closest Train Station and second is that it needs to have a public hot bath / Onsen.
We paid ₱5,143.45 for 2 nights (2 pax) in Dormy Inn Shinsaibashi. That is ₱1,285.86 ($25) per person per night. Average price per room is ₱2,000- ₱5,000. If you are travelling with a group, you can get cheaper rates by booking a house instead.
Book Your Hotel
Tip # 3 Buy Unlimited Train Ride/Pass
This one is certainly a money saver but take note that not all trains are supported by the same pass due to the number of train companies in Japan. Check if the destination you will be going is covered, otherwise, you may need to pay seperately for that journey. You can also buy unlimited train ride when you are at the station. Just use the ticket vending machine.
Tip # 4 Plan your trip itinerary and then fit your budget
When planning for a budget trip, first, identify which areas you will be going and then find the best deals for that area. Our trip consisted of several areas including Osaka, Akameguchi, Kyoto, Nara, Himeji, Mt Fuji, Tokyo.
Check out my blogs below for these areas
Our overall budget for the trip is ₱50,000 for 10 days and the bulk of the amount has already been used for the Japan Rail Pass, 10 nights hotel, Unlimited train and sim card. That is roughly ₱5,000 per day gross value which left us around ₱2,000 for the pocket money to spend on food, train not included on pass, entrance and some souvenirs.
If you are short on cash, you can concentrate on one area only and buy the unlimited train for that area.
Tip # 5: MATSUYA, MATSUYA, MATSUYA
I cannot empashize more on how Matsuya helped us get delicious food at a very cheap price. Just a comparison, one meal in KFC costs ¥600 or ₱276. Whereas 1 beef rice bowl in Matsuya costs ¥320 or ₱145. Other alternatives would be Yoshinoya (Same company as Matsuya), Family Mart, and Yatai (Street Stalls)
So, How much are you spending for your next Japan Budget Trip?
If you are planning for a DIY Budget trip to Japan, best to focus on a particular area and maximize your pass. But if you are like me who wants to JOURNEY ACROSS JAPAN for 10 days, then prepare, research and decide which attractions you wish to pay, otherwise, go for the free entrance.
Did this article help you? You can also read my other Japan Travel here
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