Transportation

Increased airline competition between major Japan airlines, and a recently launched "Visit Japan" government tourism campaign have resulted in an overall increase in flights to Japan, cheap tickets to Japan, and reduced rates on train and bus travel within the country. As you would expect with a major economic and cultural center like Japan, most major airlines across the globe have daily flights to Japan. Moreover, two of the largest Japan airlines—All Nippon Airways (ANA) and Japan Airlines (JAL)—offer wide international service, attractive package deals, and cheap roundtrip tickets to Japan. Additionally, the bus and train systems within Japan are modern, fast, and comparatively cheap. So, while you obviously can't take a bus or train to Japan from another country, you can find plane tickets and package deals that include in-country train and bus tickets with the purchase of airline tickets.

Bus

There are three basic ticket types for bus transportation in Japan: round trip, one way and multiple. Round trip Japan bus tickets are usually 10 percent cheaper than buying two, one way Japan bus tickets. Multiple tickets are 10 percent cheaper than single tickets and usually come in packets of four or five, and are a good idea if you plan on traveling throughout the country for a month or so. And while Japan Railways owns and operates a large number of the buses in Japan, a Japan Rail Pass is not valid on most highway buses.

Train

Today, Japan train travel is the fastest most efficient way to travel between the major cities of Tokyo, Nagoya, Kyoto and Osaka. The Japan bullet train connecting these four major cities is known as the Tokaido Shinkansen and was inaugurated in 1964. Back then the trains ran at about 200 km/h, now they reach speeds of over 300 km/h. After the success of this initial line, the bullet train in Japan spread to cover the majority of Honshu—Japan's middle, largest and most populated island. But the greatest feature of trains in Japan isn't their sheer speed, but their frequency. For instance, six trains per hour travel between Tokyo and Osaka. This means that you are never really late for a bullet train in Japan, just early for the one of the next trains in Japan. As you plan your rail journey of Japan, make sure to check the rates and information on Japan train travel at www.japanrail.com.

Air

While those willing to travel at a moments notice can often find last minute deals on tickets to Japan, travelers planning ahead can locate cheap flights to Japan by visiting their local travel agencies directly. By simply taking the time to sit down with an agent at an Asian travel agency you can end up with cheaper airfare to Japan. If your city has a sizeable Asian population there is a good chance a number of Asian travel agencies cater to the needs of émigré's returning to their home country for seasonal visits. A savvy traveler will often find unexpectedly cheap air tickets to Japan at such travel agencies.

Another way to find a cheap air ticket to Japan is to contact a Japanese air carrier directly—either in person, by phone or via email. It is also important to remember that, when planning a short sightseeing trip, airfare to Japan is markedly cheaper when included in a package tour. Even if you don't feel like participating in the guided sightseeing portion of the package tour, the discount airline ticket to Japan and the cheap hotel accommodations will end up actually saving you money in the long run.

Like flying to any destination, the cheapest airline ticket to Japan and the cheapest bus tickets and train tickets within Japan are available outside the peak seasons of Christmas, New Year, and Golden Week (the last week of April and the first week of May), and the summer vacation period of July and August. Another thing to keep in mind when searching for a cheap air ticket to Japan, or cheap rail or bus passes within Japan, is whether or not you plan on flying domestically once inside the country. If you plan to fly between major Japanese cities for business or pleasure, some Japanese air carriers offer cheap a cheap ticket to Tokyo Japan if you use the same airline to fly within Japan.

The best of these domestic air passes are offered by Japan Airlines (JAL) and All Nippon Airlines (ANA). JAL's Yokoso (Welcome) Japan Airpass allows foreign nationals to fly between 42 Japanese destinations for only 11,100 Yen per sector. Like the Japan Rail Pass, travelers must live outside Japan and purchase the Airpass prior to visiting Japan. ANA offers a similar air pass that allows travelers to fly between 73 domestic Japanese destinations for 12,600 Yen per destination. Similar restrictions apply to the ANA air pass.

Though Tokyo's Narita Airport is the country's major hub, you may be able to find a cheaper airline ticket to Japan if you are willing to book a flight to Osaka or Nagoya instead of limiting your search to a cheap ticket to Tokyo Japan.

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