Typical Costs when you are planning to travel to Japan

Accommodation – Most hostels will charge between 2,500-4,000 JPY per night for a dorm room. Capsule hotels cost between 3,000-5,500 JPY for a tiny little room (that’s really a pod). You can book your hostel with Hostelworld. If you’re looking for privacy, expect to pay around 8,500 JPY for a double room at a budget hotel. The price of accommodation in the big cities is significantly higher than if you were to travel off the beaten path (Okinawa, for example, is half the price of Tokyo). Use Booking.com as they consistently return the cheapest rates. If you are looking for a more unique experience, consider staying at a ryokan, a traditional Japanese bed and breakfast. While they will be more expensive than a standard hotel, it will be a unique and memorable experience as you’ll get to sleep on tatami mats, traditional breakfasts, and more!Food – There are many cheap places to eat out in Japan from the ramen noodle shops to miso and soba noodles. These food options range from 250-1,250 JPY. Buying groceries will cost you 3,700-5,000 JPY per week. Most restaurant meals cost around 2,000 JPY. Mid-range restaurants can cost around 4,350 JPY. Sushi trains cost between 125-620 JPY per piece. Fast food is around 800 JPY. You can also find plenty of cheap meals and pre-packaged items at 7-Eleven (that the locals actually eat!). Noodles, rice balls, tofu, and pre-packed sushi are all available for only a few hundred yen. If you are on a tight budget, 7-Eleven will be your go-to “restaurant.”

Transportation – Transportation in Japan is incredibly expensive. Trains are the most convenient, but also the most expensive, way to travel. A train ticket from Osaka to Tokyo can cost around 20,000 JPY! Most of the city metro tickets cost 125-250 JPY for a single journey. In most major cities, you can buy a day pass, which gives you unlimited travel for 24 hours for around 600-800 JPY on select trains and buses. Inter-city bus tickets cost around 2,500 JPY. Consider purchasing a Japan Rail Pass if you will be riding a lot of trains. JR passes come as 1, 2, or 3-week passes and give you free travel on JR lines. If you plan to do a whirlwind trip, this is the best way to save some money. You can now purchase a Japan Rail Pass in Japan. Though, the pass can be up to 20% cheaper to buy online before you arrive. Passes are available in the following country locations: Sapporo, Sendai, Niigata, Tokyo, Shinjuku, Yokohama, Nagoya, Osaka, Hiroshima, Takamatsu, Hakata, New Chitose Airport, Narita Airport, Haneda Airport, and Kansai Airport. If you are feeling adventurous, you can also hitchhike. While almost no Japanese hitch hike, many are more than happy to pick up foreigners. It’s a chance for them to practice their English and engage a new culture, so don’t be afraid to stick out a thumb!

Activities – Most temples and museums are free to enter, although some popular attractions cost around 1,250 JPY. The temples in Kyoto can cost up to 620 JPY. Many of the city’s parks are free, so take advantage when you can and spend the day there. You can buy city or temple passes that are valid for one day.