Japan is a beautiful country that is best known for being the most populated country in the world. Japan is actually most people’s dream destination. Many people have different reasons for wanting to visit Japan but the most popular reason would be because of the natural beauty which would be inclusive of the green mountains, never-ending lakes, and the very famous cherry blossoms. Apart from this, there are also many festivals that take place here, and people come from all over the world just to watch and be a part of them. There are dozens of historical sites that have become a part of UNESCO that attract people from all over the world.
Although the thought of visiting a new place is very exciting, there are plenty of things that you need to keep in mind before visiting a new place. Many countries have certain rules and regulations that need to be followed so it is important that you look for the best travel tips for Japan before you head out.
10 Things You Need To Keep In Mind Before Visiting Japan
We have composed a list of some of the best Japan travel tips to make your stay easier and memorable:
1. Japan is basically a cash-based society
Although you would think that most places especially restaurants would take credit cards, they don’t. Many stores and shopping places don’t accept cards as well. Make sure that you carry enough cash with you and as well as a card that doesn’t charge any international withdrawal fees. It is also difficult to locate ATMs in Japan. You should also carry a coin purse with you because coins are used from 1 yen to 500 yen which converts to about 5 dollars. You can also purchase a coin purse at any and every souvenir shop because of how often they are needed. This is one of the very important Japan travel tips.
2. Know when to leave your shoes out
Most of the time you will find shoes in the entrances of buildings. It can be outside a temple or even someone’s home. You should take off the shoes you came with and then change into the indoor shoes. There are some places where there are tatami mats laid out, you will have to roam barefoot on those and then change into a pair of bathroom slippers if you need to visit the toilet. Wearing shoes indoors can be considered as not just impolite but dirty as well, so always look around before heading in.
3. Make sure to carry hand sanitizer and disposable bags
It’s important to note that many public washrooms lack soap dispensers. You would think that a country so advanced would have soap mixed with the water but that’s not true! Unless you don’t mind not washing your hands then you don’t need to consider this but almost everyone is fussy about public hygiene. Another important thing that you need to note is that there are practically no garbage cans. This was a measure taken to prevent terrorism because of an event where explosives were placed in a garbage can on the subway. You can find privately managed garbage cans inside convenience stores but aside from that, it is best to carry your own if you will be needing to dispose off items.
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4. Don’t miss out on Sakura season
A lot of people look forward to viewing the cherry blossoms in Japan but they never seem to visit in the right months. If you are visiting Japan, you definitely don’t want to miss out on such a spectacle. Make sure to visit from the end of March to the beginning of May. The cherry blossoms only bloom at this time of the year. It might be a bit more expensive at this time because it will be the in-season but the view and atmosphere you get are definitely worth the price. This is one of the best Japan travel tips you can find if you want to experience the cherry blossoms.
5. Find out about festivals that take place during your visit
Japan is a place that holds thousands of different festivals throughout the year. These festivals are very popular and tourists visit from all over the world just to watch these festivals. If you are visiting in summer, you will be able to enjoy the annual fireworks festival that takes place. During these events, there are plenty of activities that you can take part in and plenty of delicious food items that you can enjoy. You will also be able to wear some traditional costumes as part of the festival. Make sure that you always prepare yourself with Japan summer travel tips before your vacation.
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6. Don’t freak out when you see locals wearing face masks
You will more than likely see a lot of people wearing paper face masks. It might look a little odd but they do this to prevent other people from getting their illness rather than protecting themselves. During the cherry blossom season, people wear them to keep the allergies away and during the winters to keep the cold away from you. If you happen to have a cold or a cough the polite thing to do would be to use a mask to cover your mouth and nose. You can purchase masks from convenient stores as well as any medications you might need. This is one of the most useful Japan travel tips for winter that anyone would be able to give you.
7. Pack light clothing for summer and an umbrella
Summer can be quite hot in Japan but it can also rain at that time. The rain is usually hard but doesn’t last very long. Although it is supposed to rain in the months of June and July, some regions can experience rain much earlier. The rains can usually be unpredictable in this case but Hokkaido doesn’t usually experience rain till the month of June. Make sure to carry light clothing to beat the heat as well as an umbrella to escape the rain. If you don’t carry one, you can always purchase one in stores. Most Japan summer travel tips would mention this.
8. Purchase a heat pack from convenience stores
A Kairo or a heat pack is a small packet that contains heat generating liquid or powder in order to keep you warm. These are most commonly used by tourists and are a great way to keep yourself warm for about 12 hours. The package is stuck to your clothing and not against your skin. It is perfect for those people who are not used to cold weather and want to explore the country. Purchasing a pocket warmer is one of the best Japan travel tips for Winter.
9. Get a Japan Rail Pass if you plan to travel to other cities
You should get a JR Pass or Japan Rail Pass if you plan to travel between cities. The pass lets you travel by any Japan Rail within the country. Bullet trains and other trains are usually very expensive but getting this pass can really cut down on costs. You will have to purchase the pass before entering Japan, so you will have to order it beforehand. If you only plan to stay in Tokyo, then you will not need to get the pass.
10. You don’t have to tip at restaurants
In most places, people will find themselves confused about how much to tip. After all the calculation and deciding on whether it should be 10-15% they end up tipping their waiters. In Japan, it is a lot different. If you do happen to tip, the waiter will chase you down and then offer you your change thinking you have forgotten it. They find it very rude and think of it as an insult that implies that they don’t get paid enough. If you happen to take up cooking classes or other guided classes, it is best if you carry a gift of appreciation rather than offering money.
Most people look for the best travel tips for Japan and we have mentioned some of the best right here. If this guide prepared you to visit Japan, then why stop here? Contact us to book your trip to Japan and get a chance to make your dream vacation real!
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Frequently Asked Questions About Japan Travel Tips
What should I know before traveling to Japan?
There are few essential things one must know before traveling to Japan.
1. Public transportation is super efficient
2. Try all the unique food
3. Pick the best areas to stay
4. Don’t tip at restaurants
5. Learn some basic Japanese words
6. Unique place to shop
What are the famous places in Japan?
Some of the best places to visit in Japan are:
1. Mount Fiji
2. Fushimi Inari Taisha
5. Tokyo Skytree
Is Japan expensive to visit?
Japan is one of the most expensive countries in the world if you are staying in the best hotels, traveling a lot or eating out. Staying in a hostel, eating relatively cheap food can help you cut down the cost.
What is the official currency of Japan?
Yen is the official currency of Japan. It is the third most traded currency in the foreign exchange market.
How much money do you need per day in Japan?
On an average, it will cost you over INR 7,000 per day when you’re traveling in Japan.
What can I buy in Japan?
Some of the many things you can shop in Japan are Matcha (Green Tea), Sensu, Wagashi, Kendama, Koinobori, Koma and Yukata.
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