Japan 2022/23 Travel plans and ideas.

Any

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The fees on atm withdrawls seem higher than the citibank global one. Only $350 a month, then $1.5 + 1.75% on withdrawal. Haven't found the city global comparison yet. For a 2 week traveller seems citibank global is better?? Already have the usual citibank card, but am looking at a way to lock in the yen while its high.
Wise's better rates usually beats out Citi, unless you're only using cash, which isn't needed as much these days.

That's why I use both.
But 2018 season in Japan and found I only used Citi once and 2019 I didn't use it at all.
(6 months living on Japan each time)
 
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CJP

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We have progressed a little more with our Feb 23 accommodation bookings. Thanks @Lucky Pete for the @Tsugaike accommodation recommendation, done.

After looking into Shiga Kogen and the great recommendations from the group we have decided to stay at the Prince East Building as we got a great price for 7nights, lift passes 3 day Yakebitaiyama t and 3 day all mountain, breakfast and dinner. Not everyone’s cup of tea but we will give it a go and make it fun.

Not knowing Shiga how does the Yakebitaiyama ski resort compare to a resort in the Hakuba area for size. Trying to work out how big this resort is.

Thanks all.
 

Gregah

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Screen Shot 2022-06-07 at 8.55.44 pm.png


Compare to the really crap Qantas travel money

Screen Shot 2022-06-07 at 8.54.44 pm.png
Thanks @Chux-sw. I've just finished setting up a Wise account and made an initial AUD to JPY transfer. Frighteningly easy (10 minutes with no outbreak of touretts) and received a 96.15 rate to boot. Feels like the future to me. Cheers.
 

Balsta

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I also setup a WISE account today, you did better than me I only got 96.08 earlier this morning :p

Now I just need to hope I get to spend the JPY come February 2023 and not have to wait until 2024
 
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skimax

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ok thanks to all the contributors in here.
Might start loading some Yen goodness shortly.
Ok ive asked a few questions on here before re accom , we will be in Tokyo of course and Kyoto but need 4 weeks or so at or near a ski resort potentially self contained if possible. One thought is Yuzawa with proximity to Shinkansen Tokyo but multiple resorts via car or bus ?
 

Donza

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Just a cautionary tale to those looking at booking Japan for next year.

A friend (and part of a large group 8 pax plus ) engaged a Travel agent to book a trip early January next year.

The Qantas flights were booked on special. No refunds.
The land component (deposit of thousands of dollars) is due by July 1.

I fowarded them the articles from the Kyodo News etc . They then sent them onto the travel agent with a basic . WTF.

They aren't keen on travelling to Japan, quite understandbly, until the restrictions on Inbound Tourism are removed. Whenever , or even if that was to occur in the next 6-12 months.

However Qantas won't refund their money. Its not a covid clause. Its a change of mind. The fact that they can't obtain a tourist visa isn't any of Qantas concern. Qantas are of the opinion that its the travellers responsibility to check Smart Traveller etc. Before booking.
 

Hyst

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Just a cautionary tale to those looking at booking Japan for next year.

A friend (and part of a large group 8 pax plus ) engaged a Travel agent to book a trip early January next year.

The Qantas flights were booked on special. No refunds.
The land component (deposit of thousands of dollars) is due by July 1.

I fowarded them the articles from the Kyodo News etc . They then sent them onto the travel agent with a basic . WTF.

They aren't keen on travelling to Japan, quite understandbly, until the restrictions on Inbound Tourism are removed. Whenever , or even if that was to occur in the next 6-12 months.

However Qantas won't refund their money. Its not a covid clause. Its a change of mind. The fact that they can't obtain a tourist visa isn't any of Qantas concern. Qantas are of the opinion that its the travellers responsibility to check Smart Traveller etc. Before booking.
I don't make any move yet - just watching the internet , ( mofa, https://www.linkedin.com/in/yoshito-kijima-01b272122/ , https://www.mhlw.go.jp/stf/covid-19/border_test.html, and ski.com.au )

Even visa is to much for me!
 

ratherb@thesnow

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Just a cautionary tale to those looking at booking Japan for next year.

A friend (and part of a large group 8 pax plus ) engaged a Travel agent to book a trip early January next year.

The Qantas flights were booked on special. No refunds.
The land component (deposit of thousands of dollars) is due by July 1.

I fowarded them the articles from the Kyodo News etc . They then sent them onto the travel agent with a basic . WTF.

They aren't keen on travelling to Japan, quite understandbly, until the restrictions on Inbound Tourism are removed. Whenever , or even if that was to occur in the next 6-12 months.

However Qantas won't refund their money. Its not a covid clause. Its a change of mind. The fact that they can't obtain a tourist visa isn't any of Qantas concern. Qantas are of the opinion that its the travellers responsibility to check Smart Traveller etc. Before booking.
JAL are still providing options for rescheduling or cancellations on flight purchases;

‘If you are unable to travel due to travel restrictions imposed by the destination’

My accommodation provider has told us to hold off on any deposits or payments at this stage, which is great, I like to have a room booked, feels good
 

Donza

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JAL are still providing options for rescheduling or cancellations on flight purchases;

‘If you are unable to travel due to travel restrictions imposed by the destination’

My accommodation provider has told us to hold off on any deposits or payments at this stage, which is great, I like to have a room booked, feels good
There are no inbound restrictions though, just managed tours. The person that bought the airfare has to stump up for a approved tour. That's how Qantas views it. That's not the airlines responsibility.
 

mannyk

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There are no inbound restrictions though, just managed tours. The person that bought the airfare has to stump up for a approved tour. That's how Qantas views it. That's not the airlines responsibility.
Approved Ski tours? Is that a market?
 

Sandy

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After looking into Shiga Kogen and the great recommendations from the group we have decided to stay at the Prince East Building as we got a great price for 7nights, lift passes 3 day Yakebitaiyama t and 3 day all mountain, breakfast and dinner. Not everyone’s cup of tea but we will give it a go and make it fun.

Not knowing Shiga how does the Yakebitaiyama ski resort compare to a resort in the Hakuba area for size. Trying to work out how big this resort is.

Thanks all.
Yakebitaiyama has 5 lifts: 2 gondolas, two detachable quads and an old slow double which I have probably used 3 times. A gondola & a quad runs from Prince East, one quad from Prince West and a gondola & double from Prince south.

Yakebitaiyama is probably about as big as Iwatake, but they are not at all similar.

There's a total of around 45 lifts at Shiga Kogen.
 

Crispy013

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JAL are still providing options for rescheduling or cancellations on flight purchases;

‘If you are unable to travel due to travel restrictions imposed by the destination’

My accommodation provider has told us to hold off on any deposits or payments at this stage, which is great, I like to have a room booked, feels good
Yeah JAL pretty good. Unlimited free change of dates up to 360 days ahead. I guess provides some flexibility to push booking to 23/24 season if needed.
 

CJP

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Yakebitaiyama has 5 lifts: 2 gondolas, two detachable quads and an old slow double which I have probably used 3 times. A gondola & a quad runs from Prince East, one quad from Prince West and a gondola & double from Prince south.

Yakebitaiyama is probably about as big as Iwatake, but they are not at all similar.

There's a total of around 45 lifts at Shiga Kogen.
Thanks Sandy, of course the only resort at Hakuba I haven't been to is Iwatake. Anyway it will be awesome.

We are looking at breaking up our trip with a 4 day side trip between Shiga Kogen and Hakuba and have decided on Osaka.

Forward our gear on from Shiga Kogen to Hakuba, bus to Nagano, Shinkansen up to Kanazawa then Thunderbird to Osaka.

Any recommendations on a nice hotel in Osaka ??

Thanks again
 

Crispy013

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Thanks Sandy, of course the only resort at Hakuba I haven't been to is Iwatake. Anyway it will be awesome.

We are looking at breaking up our trip with a 4 day side trip between Shiga Kogen and Hakuba and have decided on Osaka.

Forward our gear on from Shiga Kogen to Hakuba, bus to Nagano, Shinkansen up to Kanazawa then Thunderbird to Osaka.

Any recommendations on a nice hotel in Osaka ??

Thanks again
I’d personally stay in Kyoto. Much nicer. Or have you already spent time there and looking to explore Osaka?
 

Sandy

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I’d personally stay in Kyoto. Much nicer. Or have you already spent time there and looking to explore Osaka?
We have been to Kyoto and loved it, looking to explore Osaka this time…
Kyoto Station and Osaka Station are only 30 min apart.
Did you go Nara? THAT's worth going to.... 45 min from Kyoto & 50 min from Osaka.

BTW, if you are thinking about going to Universal Studios in Osaka for Harry Potter World, you need to get additional tickets when you first enter Universal, for Harry Potter World (you'd line up in a different spot inside).
 
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CJP

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Kyoto Station and Osaka Station are only 30 min apart.
Did you go Nara? THAT's worth going to.... 45 min from Kyoto & 50 min from Osaka.

BTW, if you are thinking about going to Universal Studios in Osaka for Harry Potter World, you need to get additional tickets when you first enter Universal, for Harry Potter World (you'd line up in a different spot inside).
Thanks Sandy, we have not been to Nara but look lovely. This will be our first trip without the kids so won’t be doing any theme parks.
Our love is Castles and Shrines, walking, general sightseeing, immersing ourself a little into Japanese life and just learning new things.
 
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Donza

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Kyoto Station and Osaka Station are only 30 min apart.
Did you go Nara? THAT's worth going to.... 45 min from Kyoto & 50 min from Osaka.

BTW, if you are thinking about going to Universal Studios in Osaka for Harry Potter World, you need to get additional tickets when you first enter Universal, for Harry Potter World (you'd line up in a different spot inside).
We didn't need additional tickets for Harry Potter World at USJ. We just got there early. First in line for getting Wand picked and the rides.
86185996_10157271170993178_7292202556996976640_n.jpg
 

Sandy

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Thanks Sandy, we have not been to Nara but look lovely. This will be our first trip without the kids so won’t be doing any theme parks.
Our love is Castles and Shrines, walking, general sightseeing, immersing ourself a little into Japanese life and just learning new things.
Nara has a big Buddha in the largest wooden building in the world.
Have you seen Hikone and Himeji Castles? Osaka Castle is good but it's a rebuild. There are twelve original castles left, I've seen 6 of them, but there's a few within striking distance of Kyoto/Osaka.
 

Sandy

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We didn't need additional tickets for Harry Potter World at USJ. We just got there early. First in line for getting Wand picked and the rides.
86185996_10157271170993178_7292202556996976640_n.jpg
Low peak time.

When I was there, even getting there early, there was a long line just to get in. You needed to line up again for Harry Potter time slots.
 

Donza

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Low peak time.

When I was there, even getting there early, there was a long line just to get in. You needed to line up again for Harry Potter time slots.
We purchased early passes . Enabled us to have the run of the park for around 45mins. Nothing special for HP though.

By 9.45am. The line was massive.
 

Sandy

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Low peak time.

When I was there, even getting there early, there was a long line just to get in. You needed to line up again for Harry Potter time slots.
We purchased early passes . Enabled us to have the run of the park for around 45mins. Nothing special for HP though.

By 9.45am. The line was massive.
It was a bit like Disney with fastpass. With a lot of people, they were controlling how many were in HP at a given time.
When we realised, we got in line getting a designated timeslot by 10am: The timeslot was 7:30pm.
 
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PMG

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Thanks Sandy, we have not been to Nara but look lovely. This will be our first trip without the kids so won’t be doing any theme parks.
Our love is Castles and Shrines, walking, general sightseeing, immersing ourself a little into Japanese life and just learning new things.
Nara's the place for you then.
Koyasan is amazing too but a little further away and harder to get to. A car would be better for there.
 
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Sandy

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Nara has a big Buddha in the largest wooden building in the world.
Have you seen Hikone and Himeji Castles? Osaka Castle is good but it's a rebuild. There are twelve original castles left, I've seen 6 of them, but there's a few within striking distance of Kyoto/Osaka.
Here's a resource I use:
https://jcastle.info/view/Original_main_keep
 
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PiggabeenBoarder

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Just booked Jetstar sale flights out of GC to Narita, was too good to pass up, though paid a bit extra for free cancellation at wife's request. I know and understand the current situation so all of this is flexible and will just go to credit for the next year if we can't get in!

About to book Nozawa but thinking of 3 to 5 days somewhere else after this. Did Myoko 2 years ago which was fine but not sure this time. @skichanger are you taking bookings now and do you offer credit in the event of Covid related issues. Any other suggestion guys for a similar place / resort to look into??

Thanks also to everyone that puts their time into this forum and posts, I get so much info from it
 

skivet

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Just booked Jetstar sale flights out of GC to Narita, was too good to pass up, though paid a bit extra for free cancellation at wife's request. I know and understand the current situation so all of this is flexible and will just go to credit for the next year if we can't get in!

About to book Nozawa but thinking of 3 to 5 days somewhere else after this. Did Myoko 2 years ago which was fine but not sure this time. @skichanger are you taking bookings now and do you offer credit in the event of Covid related issues. Any other suggestion guys for a similar place / resort to look into??

Thanks also to everyone that puts their time into this forum and posts, I get so much info from it
Would consider Shiga Kogen as the second option. Easy to transfer to and a great area to ski. Booking.com has accomodation that you can cancel 1 week to 1 month out. Check out Chalet Shiga at Ichinose and the delightful Japanese pension Okushiga Lodge Yama no Mani Mani at the quieter end of Shiga Kogen. We also booked jetstar at the half price sale a month ago for Feb and I also added the flight cancel insurance option too. Would definitely do the 5 days at Shiga Kogen as there is just so much terrain to ski there!
 

PiggabeenBoarder

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Would consider Shiga Kogen as the second option. Easy to transfer to and a great area to ski. Booking.com has accomodation that you can cancel 1 week to 1 month out. Check out Chalet Shiga at Ichinose and the delightful Japanese pension Okushiga Lodge Yama no Mani Mani at the quieter end of Shiga Kogen. We also booked jetstar at the half price sale a month ago for Feb and I also added the flight cancel insurance option too. Would definitely do the 5 days at Shiga Kogen as there is just so much terrain to ski there!
OK thanks, I forgot about Shiga but have heard plenty about it. I'll do some research and look into those suggested places. Cheers
 

Nemps20

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OK thanks, I forgot about Shiga but have heard plenty about it. I'll do some research and look into those suggested places. Cheers
Shiga Kogen is a wonderful place to explore, old school and loads of 80/90's Japanese charm. Terrain is excellent and powder super dry.
Okushiga Kogen is at northern end of valley and is a great launch pad onto the mountain.
you have dining options and it is short bus/car ride into Ichinose, where you find more options for eating and some combi stores.
No partying but you make your own fun hey.
Yamano manimani def a cool place to stay as is Pension Haku and on the quiet if we can get there our lodge, still not releasing details, watch this space :cool: which is right next to Haku..
 

moskate

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1300 people have applied for tours since the announcement of the borders opening, according to the head of the Japanese tourism agency. Is it just me or does that not seem like alot?
 
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Balsta

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That’s not a lot at all, but not surprising to me. Too restrictive, you’d have to be a very specific type of person to consider one of these tours.

Hopefully it’s a lot less than the Japanese government expected. It may give them a bit of a wake up call and maybe they’ll relax restrictions quicker.
 

Heinz

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1300 people have applied for tours since the announcement of the borders opening, according to the head of the Japanese tourism agency. Is it just me or does that not seem like alot?

Did they say where they were from? Most likely other east Asians who are happy with group tours. Can't imagine many too Australians would be included.
 

moskate

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Did they say where they were from? Most likely other east Asians who are happy with group tours. Can't imagine many too Australians would be included.
No it didn't say but the article hypothesized what you just said
 

moskate

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That’s not a lot at all, but not surprising to me. Too restrictive, you’d have to be a very specific type of person to consider one of these tours.

Hopefully it’s a lot less than the Japanese government expected. It may give them a bit of a wake up call and maybe they’ll relax restrictions quicker.
Perhaps

Or they think the demand isn't there to open up just yet so they continue with their current approach

Who knows
 
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skichanger

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Just booked Jetstar sale flights out of GC to Narita, was too good to pass up, though paid a bit extra for free cancellation at wife's request. I know and understand the current situation so all of this is flexible and will just go to credit for the next year if we can't get in!

About to book Nozawa but thinking of 3 to 5 days somewhere else after this. Did Myoko 2 years ago which was fine but not sure this time. @skichanger are you taking bookings now and do you offer credit in the event of Covid related issues. Any other suggestion guys for a similar place / resort to look into??

Thanks also to everyone that puts their time into this forum and posts, I get so much info from it
We are taking bookings at both Chalet Myoko and Chalet Madarao.

Our policy is if you canot get here due to covid travel restrictions there is either no charge or a full refund. But also happy to offer a credit.

PM or email me and with dates and I will tell you what is available. Or look at my websites:
https://chaletmyoko.com/
https://chaletmadarao.com/

You are welcome to call me as well.
 

skichanger

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Shiga Kogen is a wonderful place to explore, old school and loads of 80/90's Japanese charm. Terrain is excellent and powder super dry.
Okushiga Kogen is at northern end of valley and is a great launch pad onto the mountain.
you have dining options and it is short bus/car ride into Ichinose, where you find more options for eating and some combi stores.
No partying but you make your own fun hey.
Yamano manimani def a cool place to stay as is Pension Haku and on the quiet if we can get there our lodge, still not releasing details, watch this space :cool: which is right next to Haku..
Drove by recently. I think we had the right place. Lots of scaffolding and work happening up at the Phenix.
 
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nezumi

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Nara has a big Buddha in the largest wooden building in the world.
Have you seen Hikone and Himeji Castles? Osaka Castle is good but it's a rebuild. There are twelve original castles left, I've seen 6 of them, but there's a few within striking distance of Kyoto/Osaka.

We were lucky enough to visit Kochi castle when we went to Japan in 2018, as our friend living in Japan was working in Kochi. It's definitely not one that's on the regular tourist path, so was an unexpected treat!
 
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Sandy

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We were lucky enough to visit Kochi castle when we went to Japan in 2018, as our friend living in Japan was working in Kochi. It's definitely not one that's on the regular tourist path, so was an unexpected treat!
But you would have gone straight past TWO others as well..... Iyo Matsuyama & Marugame!!!
 

nezumi

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We are taking bookings at both Chalet Myoko and Chalet Madarao.

Our policy is if you canot get here due to covid travel restrictions there is either no charge or a full refund. But also happy to offer a credit.

PM or email me and with dates and I will tell you what is available. Or look at my websites:
https://chaletmyoko.com/
https://chaletmadarao.com/

You are welcome to call me as well.

The tarriffs page still references the 2018/19 season - have the rates not changed since then?
 

Marty McSly

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I’ve actually come to quite like Goryu, but recognising that if you stay there, thats where you’ll ski 90%+ of the time. My last Hakuba trip I stayed a bit down the hill from Goryu base, walked up at the start of the day (it’s very steep!) and didn’t venture any further than 47.

Mind you, a bus system integrated across the whole valley would be so much better, but Japan is going to Japan.
I'm thinking of the other end of the valley, somewhere around this area perhaps?

Bus Stop.PNG
Tsugaike Gondy Area.png
 

nezumi

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But you would have gone straight past TWO others as well..... Iyo Matsuyama & Marugame!!!
Not really - we flew direct from Tokyo to Kochi, and on our last day we took the train through the centre of Shikoku to Okayama on our way to Osaka for our flight home. :D
 
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