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10

It's typical, but it's not a country-wide standard or anything: the reason is that Japanese put a lot of money and effort into train research, and the latest model trains on major lines are pretty snazzy. For example, the current JR Yamanote Line trains (E231-500) have displays that show the next station, its transfers, stairs and escalators in relation to ...


5

The various Asian LCC (low-cost-carriers) airplane companies are the way to go. Check out Air Asia, Peach, Vanilla Air, etc. You should be able to travel for way less than US$300 return if you book at the right time. For example, this flight from Hong Kong to Osaka one way is less than US$120 on Peach: Similarly, this flight from Taipei to Tokyo one way ...


4

How long I need at the peace dome? It's just the ruin of a relatively small building to look at from the outside. The whole park, including the Sadako Sasaki memorial, takes an hour, tops. There's a museum that probably takes more time, but probably not a good place to take toddlers to. Is Miyajima a whole day trip With toddlers, it's at least a ...


4

No ferries, much too far. Best you could do is a cruise ship, but the only ones that tend to do HK - Yokohama are the ultra-luxury ocean liners like the Queen Elizabeth, and then only once a year. If you have a lot of time there are some cargo lines that accept passengers. Cargo ship schedules are very flexible, you have to be ready to go when they say so. ...


4

As long as you are polite for western standards it is usually fine. Handshake is OK although not common among Japanese people. Some Japanese businessman go ahead with handshakes when greeting foreigners, though. Hugs, kisses and other close contact, must be avoided and never ever tried. Slight bow while shaking hands would be just perfect.


3

(Qualifier: I am a Canadian citizen and Japanese permanent resident) Japan does not have a non-working resident visa. All the working visa types require sponsorship from a Japanese company or a formal relationship with a resident. You are correct in that the long-term stay visa doesn't match your needs - that one is mainly for people who came here on a 1 or ...


3

(Qualifier: I live in Japan ) This is common. Just ask at immigration for a regular visitor visa, explain that you want to use the WH later. Maybe put a post-it note over the WH visa and write まだ on it (means "not yet").


2

Having now done it, it's worth noting several things. ANA flies between Tokyo and Hachijojima three times daily. The first flight of the day gets you in with about 90 minutes to spare before the ferry, and you have plenty of time to get to the ferry departure. The ferry to Aogashima is 2.5 hours and is basically a cargo ship with tatami mats. Or you can ...


2

As Paul mentioned, there is a corporate culture of providing as much as possible. There is also a deeper cultural reason lots of messaging is provided as well. From a very young age, Japanese are used to getting directions and information. When you park in a mall, you'll usually have someone guiding you. There are more doormen, elevator attendants, parking ...


2

Japan (lived here 12 years) has a corporate-cultural belief that you must do as much as possible, all the time. So the screen (or light) above the door says it will open, the screen above the opposite door says it will not, and the prerecorded announcement says, in very clear Japanese, wether the left or right side door will open. This will often be followed ...


2

Japan never grants visas on arrival, only landing permissions, which are not visas. You may be referring to the landing permission provided by Article 15 of the ICRRA, especially clause (2), which states (2) An immigration inspector may, upon application by the captain of the vessel or aircraft or the carrier who operates the vessel or aircraft, grant a ...


2

For its limited express and Shinkansen(bullet trains), JR waits to announce official typhoon-related cancellations until the morning of the day that particular train runs. I expect it will not be different with the Beetle ferry - at best a cancellation may be announced the prior evening. Weather services in Japan often advise "transportation-related ...


2

I looked at JR's English and Japanese-language web sites, but neither of them appears to have any weather alerts, nor even any section for weather information or cancellations. Your best bet for accurate information, then, is probably to call them (092-281-2315). That said, based on the weather prediction, I expect you're going to be cutting it very close. ...


2

I've been on this ferry before. It is quite efficient -- check their schedule, but I suspect that it will arrive before 7:00. If it were me, I'd be willing to do it. It's slightly a pain to get to the ferry terminal from, e.g. Sannomiya; the train that goes to the terminal is less convenient than most Japanese trains. I would encourage you to either take a ...


1

Japan is pretty well-known throughout the world for its bowing culture. If you are in a semi-crowded place, you are almost guaranteed to see numerous people bowing at each other as they greet or say goodbye, so just mimic them. A slight bow works - I would recommend ignoring any articles on the internet that over-stress the complexity or the importance of ...


1

Since you wish to visit Japan for sightseeing, you would need a proper tourist visa to enter Japan. The fact that you have a valid US F-1 visa does not change that. You can apply for the visa at any Japanese consulate in the United States. Japan does this in a short stay format (they seem to call it a "transit" visa) as well wherein you are allowed to stay ...


1

I would say it's "tight" in the sense that you have zero leeway for problems. It's Japan, so things generally run as scheduled. You need 2 hours at the airport so it's possible. Any reason you don't stay at a KIX hotel instead of Kobe?


1

I know a number of people have accomplished this by flying to nearby Seoul between when their tourist visa ends and their work visa begins. Fly there a couple of days before your work visa begins, have a short stay there, and then arrange your dates so that you re-enter Japan when your work visa is valid. Not sure if this is a reasonable option for you, ...


1

Subjective information follows: (I live in Tokyo) 1) Many beaches on the main islands close promptly on August 31, thus removing the crowds. It also removes the services so you will need to pack in everything you need. One of the reasons they close is the cooler water brings in a lot of jellyfish. If you want services you will have to head south / west ...


1

I think it is semi-random, but mostly a function of the year the system was engineered or retrofitted. Newer systems have more of an I.T. backbone to feed the components. Old systems (NYC?) could not have had it in 1880, and monopoly operation of these systems don't generate much incentive for user friendliness. Portland's (Oregon) Max light rail trains ...


1

If you want to have a Japanese bathtub, it's best to stay in a Japanese-style hotel! Yes, Western-style hotels and business hotels generally have more western bathtubs. Remember, in Japan, baths are for bathing, not washing. In general, showers are better at washing your body. Many Japanese consider it gross to sit in a bathtub of your own body's dirtwater ...


1

I would recommend Shikoku. It's kind of the forgotten island with the least tourism, from both Japanese and foreigners. It's very natural and although public transportation isn't as regular (as would be expected from a lower population island) it's still decent with some planning: ...


1

Yes, there are. Hachijo islands and Ogasawara islands are famous for spicy food. Islanders put their chilli peppers literally anywhere and they are REALLY hot. I am not sure, but could be a variation of Thai Birds' Eye Chili peppers. Islanders make spicy vinegar-based sauces similar to Tabasco sauce (just few times hotter), use peppers instead of wasabi to ...



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