Japan Tips? (1 Viewer)

SophiaII

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I’ve made it to Japan with basically no questions asked by immigration, with a budget of about $200/mo ($600/88days). I’ve booked myself 1-2 hostel stays per week after the first week or so is over. Any tips when it comes to Tokyo?
 
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MolotovMocktail

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with a budget of about $200/mo

This seems incredibly unrealistic to me. I was traveling pretty cheap when I was there but I probably spent $40-50 a day in Tokyo. Granted, I was staying a hostel every night (which was around $20 a night) but food costs and train tickets add up.

On a low budget, you'll probably be eating at convenience stores for all your meals. That's not a big deal because they have lots of good prepared foods but you'll still be spending $7-10 a meal.

Do you have camping gear? I've heard wild-camping is possible there so do some research about it. Hitching is always possible but it takes some strategy so read up on Hitchwiki.

My advice is to shorten your stay so you won't be totally miserable trying to pinch pennies before going broke and being in a really shitty situation.
 

SophiaII

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I don’t have enough money to shorten my stay, as the paradox goes...

I’ll post anything I learn though.
 

SophiaII

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So far, I’ve realized that all supermarkets here have a markdown scheme based on when they close.

About 2-3 hours before closing they start to sticker things for 10% off, then about 45 min later 20%, then 45 min later 30% off, and finally half off, which is written all in Kanji.

Conbini don’t do this, just supermarkets. So you can get a ¥350 lunch set for like ¥175. So it’s a great strategy for dinner.

Lunch is a bit more tricky, but one can go to “Japanese Fast Food” places and get a bowl of rice with meat on top. There’s usually some kind of special or limited offer so you pay about ¥350 for a bowl as big as your head, comes with tea and soup.

I usually am just having a drink for breakfast, which runs me ¥75-120.

So I average about ¥700 when I eat “three meals”. But usually I only have a drink and then lunch or dinner, so closer to ¥400 per day.
 

japanarchist

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Yeah I would look into to those micro sleeping cubicles, I've heard that they're cheap. I also would look into 24 hour internet cafes, I remember seeing a documentary about someone living in one, I think you get your own room or cubicle area for some of them. Try fining a Buddhist temple, I've heard that some will put you up and feed you if you offer to do some work for them. I hope things go well for ya. I've been planning on going to Japan for years and I'd love to hear whatever tips you learn that you can pass on.
 

SophiaII

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How much do those micro motel room/sleeping cubicles cost? You know what im talking about? Its barely bigger than a doghouse. Theres room for one person to lay down, you cant stand, you have a tv n some power points for your entertainment/charge your electrical devices and bugger all else


Yeah I would look into to those micro sleeping cubicles, I've heard that they're cheap. I also would look into 24 hour internet cafes, I remember seeing a documentary about someone living in one, I think you get your own room or cubicle area for some of them. Try fining a Buddhist temple, I've heard that some will put you up and feed you if you offer to do some work for them. I hope things go well for ya. I've been planning on going to Japan for years and I'd love to hear whatever tips you learn that you can pass on.


Haha. Capsule hotels are what you are talking about. Many of them are men only. They generally cost $30-75. Which is crazy.

Manga Kissa (Net Cafe/Manga Cafe) are not really accommidation. One cannot leave one after having checked in. Depending on location and time spent there, prices vary. But an “I missed the train” (5hr) will set you back about $10, and a “full night’s sleep with a shower” (8hr) will run you closer to the $15-25 range, depending on the time of day you go and which day of the week you go.

Whereas a capsule style hostel on a main train line will run you about $11-14 on weekdays, and $15-18 on Friday and Saturday night. Making it by far the more comfortable and probably the more cost effective option if you want to sleep for 8+ hours during the nighttime most night and want a “free” place to put luggage.

Spaces are small in Japan and it can be very difficult to navigate many shops and restaurants with more than a half-full book bag. In a pinch you can go the coin locker route if your baggage begins to hinger you. You rent them for up to 24 hours, with the small ones (suitable for carry-on sized bags) available for between $2-5, depending on location, and the largest ones (extra large checked baggage) costing between $5-10
 

SophiaII

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So, it’s a bit out of the way, but I found a hostel which charges about $7.50-$10.00 per night. It’s called Edo Tokyo Hostel. After I check the train prices for commuting, I’ll have more to say.

I can’t recall if I mentioned this previously about food:
Convenience stores are convenient, but not cheap. Supermarkets are a better price. Supermarkets are cheaper about 2-3 hours before close, but food goes quickly. I think I’ve explained that part.

BUT! Please remember that just like in any other country, different chains and different locations will have different prices.

Let’s say we have a coffee.

7-11 in Shibuya- ¥135
7-11 by home- ¥130
Lawsons near home- ¥115
Vending machiene (busy) -¥110
Chain grocery (busy) -¥105
Vending machiene (quiet)- ¥100
Chain grocery (quiet)-¥98
Local grocery (busy) -¥93
Local grocery (quiet)- ¥88

And there might be exceptions, but this seems to be roughly the price order for things. I bought 2L of tea for ¥52 in a quiet local grocery that I’ve seen on sale in popular, busy Conbini for over ¥200.

It might seem obvious, but I didn’t think about it when I first got here because I was a bit overwhelmed.

Local groceries also tend to close sooner, so they put their food on discount earlier in the day, and they go more quickly from 10% to 50% off. And they’re usually not as crowded, so you have less pressure while browsing. (Sometimes it can be difficult to tell what a food item is, or if it already cooked)
 

SophiaII

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Id love to see some pics of japan
 

Minnie

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wahoooooo! your input was very fantastic and informative and well put together and exxtremely interesting. i see this was from,,, almost two years ago but i wanna bring this back into action. do you have anything more to add?? how did you go about getting around, what's cheap, what's not?? upon reflection is there another drop of wisdom i can squeeze outta you for living cheap in japan. cheers mate!
 

Odin

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Awwwww jeeeze.... that bike covered in snow is such a great pic.

I think I have the same kinda rack like the one on the back.

Sigh.... I just gotta install it on another broke bike I got.


To fix... lol

🍕🍻🍰
 

roughdraft

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this is some relevant content for anyone tryin to go to Japan. There are some parts with this guy hitchhiking and sleeping rough, it's worth a look. I'm not in love with his character revealed through narration, but take what you like. All of his videoes are (imho) VERRRRY well edited and concise
 

jimi

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this is some relevant content for anyone tryin to go to Japan. There are some parts with this guy hitchhiking and sleeping rough, it's worth a look. I'm not in love with his character revealed through narration, but take what you like. All of his videoes are (imho) VERRRRY well edited and concise
Ooooh, this was very good! I'm definitely gonna watch the rest, thanks for sharing! I've also heard from a few people who have gone there over the years basically the same thing reflected in this video; that it's remarkably easy to sleep rough and hitch. It's not too hard to hide to sleep, but I've also heard several tales of people just sleeping in pubic (doorways, park benches, etc) in major cities with no real problems.
 

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