Planning the Tokyo Trip - FAQ

Sunday, September 20, 2009 Posted by YY on 3:08 AM

Here are some of the common questions that first timers may ask, hopefully this FAQ will help you in planning your trip:

  1. Should I get the JR Pass?
    Unless you are going outside Tokyo, else I think one day passes to outskirts of Tokyo and buying tickets whenever required is sufficient. We spend about ¥1000 for topup(Suica card) every 2 days or so, our travels are mainly along the Yamanote Line.

  2. Is it expensive to eat in Tokyo?

    • In Tokyo, a bowl of ramen should cost around ¥700 - ¥900 or so.
      Typical Tsukemen in Tokyo:

    • If you visit those standing food joints(whereby you stand and eat), a bowl of soba can cost as little as ¥220.
      Yasai Karage Soba from Standing Soba Bar at JR Shinjuku Station:

    • For conveyor belt sushi, its roughly ¥130 per plate at sushi joints like 天下寿司.More expensive stuffs are those like unagi, teppanyaki, tempura can hit above ¥1000.
      Uni Sushi from 天下寿司:

    • Drinks and Onigiri(rice ball) can be bought from ¥100 shops(after tax its ¥105), which includes fantastic Caffe Latte that sells for about S$3.30 in Singapore. NOM NOM~

    • MacDonald's has got ¥100~ ¥120 offer for some burgers and drinks like milkshake, roasted ice coffee. These are great venues for some light snacks, plus they have a wifi area for NDS downloads.

  3. Must I speak Japanese to be able to go free and easy?
    Not really, as there are English signage all over Japan now.
    K can speak very basic Japanese and read some katagana characters so that made things slightly easier especially when we had to place orders in Japanese. But if you can read chinese 繁体 characters, you should be able to get around quite easily too.

    For most of the ramen shops, you can order via a vending machine, pay up and then give your coupons to the counter staff who will then process your orders. No Japanese knowledge required unless the staffs ask you about size or side orders for your order.

  4. Should I get some maps before going to Japan?
    Basically, there are alot of railway maps to get at the train stations so please do not spend S$10 to get these maps in Singapore.

    Using the google map functions and marking out landmarks along the way will help you alot, trust me!

  5. Are there any more summer sales during August period?
    Yes, there were summer sales although most shops were slowly uploading more Autumn wear. Most of the discounts for shops in Shibuya 109 comes in the form of top wear + bottom wear for a discounted price.

    Other than that, there were also many tops going for ¥1050 in Harajuku and Shibuya. You can find more of such offers from shops that are located outside shopping centres, i.e. off along small alleys.

Are there any other questions that you is bothering you? Leave me a message and I will try my best to answer you.


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