Planning a Trip to Japan: DOs & DON’Ts (2022)

At long last, the news we have all been sitting tight for — Japan will return to autonomous global vacationers on

Visa waivers will be reestablished such countless ethnicities (counting the US and UK) won’t have to apply for a visa to japan trip.

To enter Japan you should show confirmation you have been immunized multiple times OR show a negative Coronavirus test result required in the span of 72 hours of appearance.

To speed things up on appearance, download the MySOS application to transfer your documentation something like 6 hours before your flight (yet several days is more secure). 

Elegant women in Tokyo - Japan travel tips

Be ready to wear a veil inside and in jam-packed outside settings as this is as yet normal practice in Japan.

Until 11 October it is simply conceivable to visit Japan by booking through a visit administrator and applying for a visa ahead of time.

I strongly suggest buying travel protection that covers Coronavirus clinical costs. SafetyWing Protection is an amazing financial plan choice, particularly for voyagers on longer outings and families (as kids under 10 are free). It’s accessible around the world.

In the event that you need a more complete strategy with undoing cover, look at Heymondo travel protection. It’s likewise accessible overall and offers 5% off for our perusers.

When to Visit Japan

We’ve visited Japan in every one of the four seasons and don’t believe there’s a terrible opportunity to go.

In winter, it’s crisp yet swarms are lower, you’ll track down extraordinary arrangements on convenience, and you’ll truly see the value in those onsens (natural aquifers). You can likewise go skiing or snowboarding and have the most obvious opportunity with regards to seeing snow-covered Mount Fuji.

In summer, it very well may be steaming warm and sticky, yet there are fewer unfamiliar travelers around and heaps of neighborhood celebrations to appreciate. It’s additionally the best opportunity to visit the many seashores and the main time you can climb Mount Fuji. 

The most famous and best in general times to visit Japan are spring (Walk April) and pre-winter (October – early December). This is the point at which you can partake in the beautiful cherry blooms (sakura) or harvest time leaves (Koyo). It’s more packed and costly, yet the weather conditions can be great and it is simply staggering.

See our manual for visiting the Kyoto cherry blooms for more data on the well-known sakura season.

Shoulder seasons May and late September/early October are likewise great times to visit with warm climates and lower swarms.

Two seasons I would keep away from for a get-away to Japan are:

Brilliant Week toward the beginning of May – In 2023 Brilliant Week is from 29 April – 5 May. This is a progression of public occasions so many Japanese travels locally, trains and lodgings book up, and famous spots will be extra packed.

Mount Fuji and cherry blossoms at the Arakurayama Sengen Park in the Fuji Five Lakes area

New Year – Late December to early January. This is likewise an active time with neighborhood voyagers and most organizations close for as long as four days.

How Long to Spend in Japan

How long do you really want in Japan? To the extent that this would be possible!

There is such a huge amount to see — we have gone through months in the nation yet have a long list of must-dos.

For first-time guests, I suggest visiting Japan for quite a long time. This is a sufficient opportunity to see a few features — Tokyo, Kyoto, and a couple of more modest objections. See our Japan fourteen-day agenda for ideas.

Seven days is the base time I suggest for a Japan trip.

For a more loosened-up Japan getaway, spend the entire week in Tokyo or Kyoto and require road trips. Or on the other hand on the off chance that you wouldn’t fret hurrying about, visit both significant urban communities with a short-term stop on the way (like Hakone).

Peruse our aide on the most ideal getaway spots in Japan to choose what interests you most and think of an agenda. You’ll discover a few ideas toward the finish of this aide.

Before Your Japan Excursion

Check in the event that you want a visa. Sans visa travel is workable for residents of 68 nations for stays of as long as 90 days (counting the US, UK, Canada, Australia, and the EU). Do have a return or forward trip out of the country as they might barbecue you upon appearance. However, it was the most delightful movement cross-examination we’ve at any point had.

Simon dressed up as Yoshi on our go karting experience in Tokyo

Buy your Japanese Rail Pass trade request before you travel to Japan (favoring that later).
Practice even simple Japanese — numbers are exceptionally helpful! The Pimsleur Japanese sound course is great for learning the fundamentals.

Get a Worldwide Driving License.

You’ll require this for go-karting on the genuine Tokyo streets dressed as your number one person. Madness however quite possibly the best time thing we’ve done in Japan.
Orchestrate travel protection. Medical care is costly in Japan, so ensure you are canvassed in the event that the most horrendously awful occurs. We’ve utilized and suggested Heymondo and SafetyWing (both accessible around the world).

Purchase an Airalo eSIM –

You’ll need reasonable information on your telephone as approaching guides and Google Interpret makes life such a great deal simpler. A computerized eSIM is easy to set up before you show up and costs at Airalo start at just US$6. On the off chance that your telephone doesn’t uphold eSIMs, you can purchase an actual Umobile SIM from a candy machine at the Tokyo Narita Air terminal (ensure your telephone is opened).

General Customs in Japan

Get a Japanese Rail Pass. It might appear to be costly from the get go ($360/£326 per individual for a 2-week pass), however it is definitely justified. The advantage of shinkansen (slug train) jumping is elating. Don’t bother booking seats ahead of time, simply pick a train, wave your pass, and bounce on. Be cautioned, however, that choose now regardless of whether to get one. You can’t get these infants inside the country. Indeed, truth be told. They’re enchantment passes that are simply accessible to outsiders and you want to arrange them online from Peruse our manual for whether a Japan Rail Pass is worth the effort for all that you want to be aware of (at times it works out less expensive to pay more only as costs arise).

Utilize the many candy machines All over the place.

You won’t ever go parched in that frame of mind without a doubt. You might in fact get hot espresso… in a can! (Simon’s friend in need when we had early morning trains to get.) as a matter of fact, you can get dag nab’ anything from candy machines from modest 100 yen purpose (yuk!) to sweltering chips (of course we didn’t attempt!) and SIM cards. In Tokyo, you can utilize your Suica transport card to pay.
Press irregular buttons on the board close to you on the loo. It will make you snicker;o)! Additionally, in the event that it’s cold, appreciate the outright wonder of warmed latrine seats.

Experience passionate feelings for seeing stories (altar doors) all over, particularly little red ones in lines behind one another. Fushimi Inari Sanctum in Kyoto is our #1 (however go right on time as it’s famous).
Love and value the wonderful show of without question, everything from the astounding design to the way bento confines have wrapped a napkin tied in a tangle only in this way, to astonishing sewer vent covers!  

Pack light.

It will be a lot more straightforward to bounce on and off trains while going around Japan in the event that you pack light and lodgings have restricted extra room for baggage. The best part is that movement with simply portable gear.

Pull out cash from 7-11 ATMs.

They are the most solid no-expense choice for worldwide cards and can be found all over. Ensure you generally have cash close by as many spots don’t acknowledge Visas.
Use Navitime to check train times and costs (and to work out in the event that a Japan Rail Pass is worth the effort for your schedule).

Visit BIC Camera assuming you really want any sort of gadget.

These monstrous stores have all that you could envision. Take your visa in the event that you are making a huge buy and get it tax-exempt. I purchased a camera here and wound up getting heaps of additional limits and free extras. It’s likewise a decent spot to purchase a SIM card in the event that you didn’t get one at the air terminal.


Lease a vehicle – For most guests the most effective way to travel to Japan is via train. Somewhere else we love travels, yet leasing a vehicle in Japan is simply not worth the problem except if you are going distant the beaten track.

Anato No Warehouse Kawasaki, one of the coolest things to do in Tokyo

Open the entryway if taking a taxi.

They are either mechanized or the white-gloved drive will open it for you. It’s likewise smart to have your objective’s location recorded in Japanese to show the driver as most don’t communicate in English (despite the fact that Kyoto Station currently has an outsider accommodating taxi line).

Eat non-Japanese.

We just attempted this once in Fukuoka. We had an Indian curry hankering, yet after that experience, we went straight back to Japanese. (Erin: We have eaten some heavenly Indian and Italian food in Japan, however, I concur that the nearby cooking is staggering to the point that why gamble with it?)

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Be eager.

Things will get arranged for you. The beneficial thing about Japan however is that you most likely will not at any point wind up getting anxious in any case, everything.

Neglect to really take a look at opening times –

Japanese cafés aren’t typically open the entire day and the two eateries and attractions generally triumph when it’s all said and done a last request/passage 30 to an hour prior to shutting.
Go zooming around the country to an extreme. It can save energy to base yourself in one spot and require road trips as we did in Kyoto and Okayama.

Simon wearing a kimono for our vegetarian sushi feast at Morizuya Ryokan in Kinosaki Onsen

Wear holey socks.

You’ll possibly be humiliating yourself when you take your shoes on/off continually!
Go into an onsen without washing first, that is simply grimy buddy! Likewise, don’t go into the washing region with a towel folded over you, you’ll simply look dumb. Embrace the nakedness! Everybody’s exposed so nobody cares. 

Top Japan Objections

Tokyo – The best of present-day Japan. This immense city has extraordinary food, various areas, and a few novel encounters. Attempt these cool activities in Tokyo and partake in the best veggie lover cafés in Tokyo.
Kyoto – The best of conventional Japan with many dazzling sanctuaries to investigate. Peruse the best activities in Kyoto.
Takayama – A more modest, calmer option for conventional Japan with a wonderfully memorable focus on saved wooden houses.
Hakone – So that the opportunity could see Mount Fuji, mountain landscape, lakes, onsens, and fun vehicle choices (streetcars and privateer ships!).
Kawaguchiko – Surprisingly better perspectives on Mount Fuji at Lake Kawaguchiko.
Nikko – Shocking sanctuaries in the timberland. Could be visited as a road trip from Tokyo.
Hiroshima – Visit the moving harmony commemoration

Author: Pat McGuigan

Pat McGuigan is an accomplished author, car enthusiast, and journalist who has made a name for himself in the automotive world. With a passion for cars that dates back to his childhood, Pat has dedicated his career to sharing his knowledge and insights with others through his writing. Born and raised in Detroit, Michigan, Pat's love for cars was instilled in him at a young age. Growing up in the heart of the American automotive industry, he was surrounded by the sights and sounds of the latest and greatest cars and trucks. He spent his childhood tinkering with engines and reading car magazines, and by the time he reached his teenage years, he knew that he wanted to make a career out of his passion.