Update March 2010 Etsuko Nakamura URL: http://enakamura.

net Phone: +81-70-5552-5747

Travel Tips

1. Visa
Please confirm your visa eligibility and obtain the appropriate visa to enter Japan. http://www.jnto.go.jp/eng/arrange/essential/visa.html

2. Money
In general, you can use your foreign issued ATM cards with PLUS and Cirrus Networks. These cards are accepted at Citibank and Shinsei Bank ATMs or any ATM machines at 7 Eleven or at Post Offices. ATM machines at 7 Eleven are accessible 24 hours, but other bank or postal service ATM may have limited hours of operation. Although hotels accept most major credit cards, cash is widely used here in Japan and it’s a good idea to keep 10,000 yen or more handy at all times. You will be surprised to find many places who do not accept credit cards or sometimes, have trouble with approval of foreign issued credit cards (especially Visa). If you are planning to travel outside major tourist areas, please be prepared to use ATMs often. Please keep in mind that the daily withdrawal limit you have with your bank applies in Japan, too. You may want to change your daily withdrawal limit to higher amount such as US $1,000 while you are traveling. Also, advising your bank and credit company of your travel plans is always good to avoid any temporary suspension. If you have alphabet as part of your password, please note majority of ATM keys do not have alphabet printed on them. At Narita Airport, you can either exchange money at the bank or withdraw cash using ATM cards issued overseas at Citibank, Shinsei bank, JP Bank or Seven Bank machines. ATM locations at Narita Airport: http://www.hotspot.ne.jp/en/servicemenu/serviceplan.html General information on money and ATMs http://www.jnto.go.jp/eng/arrange/essential/money.html

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Update March 2010 Etsuko Nakamura URL: http://enakamura.net Phone: +81-70-5552-5747

3. International Calls and Cell Phones
Cell phone rental: Cell phone rental information at Narita: http://www.narita-airport.jp/en/guide/service/list/svc_19.html Softbank, in general, has the best English customer support. Docomo is also popular. DoCoMo: http://roaming.nttdocomo.co.jp/en/index.html Softbank: http://www.softbank-rental.jp/en/index.php General Phone and International Call guide: General telephone information including domestic, international credit card calls, and emergency calls: http://www.jnto.go.jp/eng/arrange/essential/telephone.html If you are bringing your computer with you, it’s best to use Skype to make international calls. Pre-paid Calling Card: You can obtain a pre-paid international calling card at convenience stores or online. http://www.brastel.com/pages/Eng/home/ iPhone?: Please check with your carrier at home. iPone service via AT&T has roaming service in Japan. http://www.wireless.att.com/learn/international/roaming/iphone-travel-tips.jsp

4. Internet
Internet service is usually available through LAN cable connection. A LAN cable comes with the room. Check with the hotel before you make a reservation. In general, wireless Internet service is not widely available without a monthly subscription. If you need to find a hotspot with a fee, this provider has one day use. http://www.hotspot.ne.jp/en/servicemenu/serviceplan.html
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Update March 2010 Etsuko Nakamura URL: http://enakamura.net Phone: +81-70-5552-5747

5. Helpful Information
Yen Currency Converter http://www.bento.com/tmcurr.html Time Difference http://www.jnto.go.jp/eng/arrange/essential/timedifferences.html Electricity Hair driers come with the hotel room. If you need to bring other appliances with you, see below for information on electrical current in Japan. Please note that only two-flat-pin-plugs are available in Japan and you may need a plug adapter for your computer. http://www.jnto.go.jp/eng/arrange/essential/electricity.html Weather Please check this site for weather forecast before you leave your home country. http://www.jma.go.jp/en/week/ Drugs Sudafed is not sold here. Bufferin is available. You may want to pack cold medicine, motion sickness medicine and stomach medicine you are familiar with. Travel Bags Elevators and escalators may not be available at all times. So, do not bring a huge suitcase! • 1 Suitcase with rollers and 1 small backpack or small bag for day trips. A 22” or 24” roll aboard suitcase is ideal. Please make sure you bring a small daypack to carry daily travel items you need.

Recommnended Travel Items for Japan • • • • Comfortable, relatively conservative, neat-looking clothing. Comfortable, easily removable walking shoes. You will be walking a lot. Travel-size tissue – regular public restrooms offer limited or no paper products! Handkerchiefs are a good idea too.
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Update March 2010 Etsuko Nakamura URL: http://enakamura.net Phone: +81-70-5552-5747

• •

Please bring small amounts of any over-the-counter medication you use often. Many medicines available OTC in the US or Europe are by prescription only here in Japan If you are traveling on business, bring a lot of business card. Small umbrella or rain coat will come handy.

Travel shoes/clothes for visiting breweries Please wear comfortable, easily removable walking shoes to visit breweries. In addition, you will be walking a lot (about 1.5 miles to 2 miles or 2.5 km – 3 km a day or more) and on your feet during the brewery tours. Inside the breweries, it is quite cold. Please wear warm clothes. For first time visitors to Japan: Japanese Toilet
If you have been to Japan before, please skip this section. You may find this section amusing, but I have seen people struggle with toilets and accidentally splash water all over! Western-style toilets are found in hotels, department stores and large restaurants – however, we will also find traditional toilets at the building SPC is held, near temples, small restaurants, public parks, and in train stations. Don’t worry – using these toilets is a lot easier than you think.

1. Face the hood of the toilet. Step up over toilet. 2. Line up your feet with the white arrows as pictured. NOTE: Toilet paper is not always provided - have travel tissue handy! Photo and article of this toilet section is credited to Jennifer at Japan Tours.
Credit: Jennifer Hale Ockner http://www.japantoursandtravel.com

If you have not been to Japan before and curious how the bidet system works in general, please check this site.
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:JapaneseToiletControlPanel.jpg
Photo credit: Chris 73 on Wikipedia under CC AS2.5

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