Trip to Japan (Part 1)

Finally, an overseas trip after working and boring myself to death in Singapore. This time, I traveled with my brother who is an otaku (a young person who is obsessed with computers or animes or manga)

For this post (Part 1) , I will be talking about the airline, insurance, accommodation and our cost usage for WiFi. From the start of the planning, we disregarded the cost since Japan is one of the expensive countries to travel to and partly because of my high-maintenance brother, my wallet was crying for help.

Airline

We booked Scoot Airlines from 30th November 2016 to 9th December 2016. Total is SGD 1,649.42. It was more expensive since we were not booking return trip flights from the same airport. Here was the breakdown :

Singapore to Osaka (KIX) – SGD 806.24

Tokyo (NRT) to Singapore – JPY 63,680 (SGD 843.18)

Insurance

It’s a must to buy travel insurance when you are traveling overseas especially countries with frequent natural disasters/scandals/riots. SOMPO Traveljoy is a great travel insurance plan for those budget travelers. Both Annual plan and Single Trip plan comes in three types – Elite , Deluxe and Vital. The premium amount differs on the country you’re traveling to. In addition, they have a new insurance plan (Go Japan!) for travelers who are solely going for Japan. The difference between this GoJapan! and other traveljoy insurance – GoJapan! is a specially tailored plan for travelers in Japan. Japan Cashless services, free translation services over the phone etc. If you plan to make calls overseas, Go Japan! is a suitable plan to consider.

Some of the coverage included under Traveljoy

  • Personal Accident – Coverage Up to S$500,000
  • Medical Expenses Incurred Overseas – Coverage up to S$1,000,000
  • Financial Collapse of Licensed Tour Operator
  • Full Terrorism Cover
  • 24/7 Emergency Hotline

For more info, please refer to Traveljoy brochure

For both my brother and I, we were lucky to purchase Traveljoy Single Trip – Elite at a price of SG 102 after 50% discount.

Accommodation

Airbnb came to our mind when we were discussing about the accommodation in Japan. Hotels are too expensive and living in hostels/capsule hotels are troublesome to my brother. For our first Airbnb experience, we chose Kaname-san’s listing as our shelter in Osaka.

Located in Shin-Osaka, the station has access to JR line that allows you to travel to Kyoto, Nara and Kobe easily. If you are travelling via Airport Limited Express “Haruka”, do not fret about transfers as it is a direct route from the airport in 50 minutes. Also, if you are planning to go to Tokyo, the station has shinkansen (bullet trains) too!

Simple apartment for two situated 8 minutes away from the station. Having a family mart and restaurants around the apartment also added to the reasons why this place was chosen. From the reviews, it seemed like Kaname-san will personally fetch his guests from the station to the apartment on the first day. And it was true! Both of us reached in the evening of 7pm and he came to fetch us.  He personally drove us around the city before going back to the apartment and explaining about some house rules. Overseas WiFi router was provided during our stay as well.

This listing is highly recommended ! Thumbs Up to the friendly host! Definitely will come back again.

SGD 59  x 4 nights = SGD 236. Adding the cleaning fees of SGD 35  and service fee SGD 32, that would be SGD 303.

Click here to see more information on Kaname-san’s apartment

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Kaname-san’s apartment

As for Tokyo, we chose Ryoko-san’s listing. A simple zen apartment situated in Asakusabashi which has less than 4 minutes access to JR line and Toei Subway line (Asakusa line). And it has access to both Narita International Airport and Haneda Airport. The listing said it can accommodate five guests but personally, I feel that it is too small to fit five people. However, I would give thumbs up to the host as he provided a lot of helpful tips and recommendations during my stay. And his manual (directions to the apartment, restaurants, route to the airport) was detailed too. When I ran out of Japanese Yen during my trip, Ryoko-san suggested going to DAIKOKUYA to get better exchange rates.

SGD 89 × 5 nights = SGD 445. Adding to the cost of service fee of SGD 54, total was SGD 499.

Click here to see more information on Ryoko-san’s listing. He has more than one listing so if you are interested in other locations, do take a look.

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Ryoko-san’s apartment

WiFi

Data-roaming is a problem whenever you are in overseas. In Japan, WiFi is accessible in airports, major train stations and some restaurants. With this, you can save some money and spend on food or shopping but having 24/7 WiFi access is better especially when you have no sense of direction or an inseparable connection with WhatsApp or Instagram.

From Changi Recommends, we rented an overseas WiFi router at $5 per day (Thanks to their latest promotion).

You can rent Singapore Wifi Router, arrange for local and overseas airport transfer or purchase Japan Rail Pass through this website. Amazing right?

Websites I used to plan for my trip

  • JP Rail – A complete guide on Japan rail travel. It includes sample itineraries and articles on the differences of passes and types of trains. If you have doubt on which type of passes to purchase,  post your itinerary on the forum to ask Takeshi-san. He’ll reply to your question kindly.
  • Hyperdia – Timetable and route search in Japan. Great website to find the most convenient route to your destination. You can filter the results by time, money or transfers.

Instagram account : _sherylee

Part 2 of my trip (Osaka) – Click here

 

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