Recommended Japan Travel Resources

Welcome to The Real Japan Travel Resources section, my list of the services and products I use and recommend or suggest you consider when planning and booking your next trip to Japan.
UPDATED: March 2024

Rob Dyer The Real Japan
by Rob Dyer, Founder The Real Japan

Whether you’re thinking about your first trip to Japan, or you're a seasoned multi-tripper looking for some fresh inspiration, the huge number of travel advice and resources out there can be overwhelming.

That’s why I've compiled this list for you.

This list covers all the essentials. It’s filled with carefully selected travel resources. And I only include the best travel resources - those I use myself or recommend to my clients.

Rob Dyer The Real Japan

I hope you find this page helpful.

But if you'd like me to help with trip planning click here.

Flight Booking Services

These are the best flight booking and flight deal services on the market today. I have personally used all of these and am a member of both JAL and ANA's Frequent Flyer clubs. Both are known for outstanding customer service at an affordable price.

Japan Airlines site The Real Japan travel resources

Japan Airlines (JAL)

Plan Your Trip with Confidence

JAL QR The Real Japan
ANA site The Real Japan travel resources

ANA (All Nippon Airways)

Fly to Japan with a 5-Star Airline

ANA QR The Real Japan
Jack's Flight Club site The Real Japan travel resources

Jack's Flight Club

Cheap Flights, Flight Deals & Alerts

Jacks Flight Club QR The Real Japan
Qatar Airways site The Real Japan

Qatar Airways

Book Flights with a World-Class Airline

Qatar QR The Real Japan

Accommodation Booking

These are among the best accommodation booking sites you can find. From the big names like whose market-leading position is well-deserved, through to more specialised Japanese companies like Japanese Guesthouses and Jalan. Be sure to register where it is offered as you'll likely get access to member-only deals.

Official Japan Rail Pass Agents

The Japan Rail Pass can be great value if you're looking to explore a lot of cities in Japan by rail. It's best to book passes in advance and before you enter Japan for the best prices. Passes are only available through authorised Official Agents.
This is my current top recommendation.

Japan Tour Booking Services

As a long-standing independent traveller, I used to turn my nose up at guided tours. But having used some down the years, these can be some of the most efficient and easiest ways to explore Japan. From full country tours to short trips, these are my top recommended tour booking sites. Again, register where you can for access to subscriber-only deals.

G Adventures

Adventure Holidays, Travel & Tours

G Adventures QR The Real Japan

Short Guided Tours & Day Trip Portals

Here's my hand-picked selection of the leading short tour and day trip booking sites. These include everything from food and drink tours lasting just a couple of hours, to island tours lasting a day or more. 

Get Your Guide site The Real Japan travel resources

Get Your Guide

Book Tours, Activities & Attractions

GetYourGuide QR The Real Japan
Viator site The Real Japan travel resources


Things To Do, Tickets, Tours & Attractions

Viator QR The Real Japan
Rakuten Travel Experiences site The Real Japan travel resources

Rakuten Travel Experiences

Book An Experience You'll Never Forget

RTE QR The Real Japan

Japanese Experience Booking Services

Japan has so many unforgettable experiences, the choice can be overwhelming. Here's my selection of the best providers where you can discover and book everything from authentic Japanese cooking classes, cultural activities, sumo tickets, or a two-day express access pass to Japan's famous Universal Studios Japan. 

byFood site The Real Japan travel resources


Explore Japanese Food Experiences

byFood QR The Real Japan
Cookly site The Real Japan travel resources


Book Authentic Cooking Classes

Cookly QR The Real Japan
Klook experiences site The Real Japan travel resources


Explore All Things To Do In Japan

Klook QR The Real Japan
Tiqets experiences site The Real Japan travel resources


Iconic Attractions & Amazing Experiences

Tiqets QR The Real Japan
Wabunka unique experiences in Japan


Unique Experiences to Feel Enriched

Wabunka QR unique experiences in Japan

Restaurant Reservation Services & Food Tours

Knowing where to eat and then booking restaurants in Japan can sometimes be tricky. From 3 Michelin Star establishments, to vegan cafes, to the world's best sushi and ramen - there's literally something for everyone. Or how about a food tour?

byFood restaurants site The Real Japan travel resources


Book Over 1400 Restaurants In Japan

byFood QR The Real Japan
Rakuten Travel Experiences restaurants site The Real Japan travel resources

Rakuten Travel Experiences

Book Now To Skip The Waitlist

RTE Cuisine QR The Real Japan

Buses, Ferries, Flights & Railways Booking Sites

12Go Asia has an excellent search engine where you find the schedule for buses, ferries and more throughout Japan. Once you've found your ideal route simply reserve your seats directly on their site - really handy! Rome2Rio is a fantastic resource that can be used to simply find the distance between two places by your preferred mode of transport (car, bus, train, etc), or help you plan and book a trip in detail.

12Go Asia site The Real Japan travel resources

12Go Asia

Book Buses, Ferries, Flights & Trains

12GoAsia QR The Real Japan
Japan Transit Planner site by Jorudan

Japan Transit Planner

Train & Airline Route Planner

Jorudan (JTP) QR The Real Japan

Portable Wi-Fi Rental

For maximum connectivity and ease of travel in Japan, I strongly recommend renting a portable WiFi. This is my No.1 'Must Have' piece of tech while exploring the country. Thanks to Japan's excellent mobile phone network, you reliably get a strong signal and fast service even in the farthest reaches of Japan's far-flung islands. Here are my top recommendations.

Japan Wireless site The Real Japan travel resources

Japan Wireless

Japan Pocket Wi-Fi Rental

Japan Wireless QR The Real Japan
Ninja wifi JRPass benefits The real Japan

Ninja WiFi

High Speed Portal Router Rental

Ninja WiFi (JRPass) QR The Real Japan

SIM Card & eSIM Providers

Short term Japan SIM cards are great for tourists, business travellers or short trips to Japan. You can choose between Voice+Text+Data SIMs or Data-only SIMs. Get your SIM sent to you before you travel or pick it up when you arrive in Japan.
Or choose the Japan eSIM option below and get it via email within minutes!

Japan Travel Guide Books

A good travel guide can be one of your best investments for unearthing places you've never heard of and for practical tips on getting the most out of any visit to Japan. Here's my top 3 recommendations.

Rough Guide Japan 2020 The Real Japan

Rough Guide

Plan Your Visit To Japan

Rough Guides (Amazon) QR The Real Japan
Japan by Rail The Real Japan

Japan By Rail

Discovering Japan By Rail

Japan By Rail (Amazon) QR The Real Japan

Japanese Language Study

Being able to speak and read Japanese will give you an advantage over those (like me) who struggle with the language, or cannot speak it at all. Here are some places that are rated highly by users where you can learn Japanese...

Airport Meet And Greet Service

For stress-free travel in Japan, enjoy this personal concierge service at major airports and rail stations to assist with your travel documentation, ticket purchases, Japan Rail Pass voucher redemption, currency exchange, or SIM card/WiFi rentals.
My wife and I have personally used this service.

JR Pass Meet & Greet The Real Japan travel resources

JR Pass Meet & Greet

Personal Airport Concierge Service

Meet & Greet JR Pass QR code The Real Japan

Japan Car Rental

If you want to rent a car in Japan but don't speak or read Japanese, there's an easy way to get this sorted - by using the website. Although best known for their hotel platform, the site also offers simple car rental in Japan.

car rental Japan Booking site

Car Rental via

Cheap car hire, compare deals

Car Rental Booking QR The Real Japan

Travel Insurance

My wife and I never travel without annual multi-trip travel insurance. I've been ill and hospitalized in Japan and you don't want that to happen to you if you do not have travel insurance! Here's my recommendations.

Staysure travel insurance The Real Japan

Staysure Travel Insurance

It's Worth Doing Right

Staysure travel insurance QR The Real Japan
Avanti travel Insurance sale

Avanti Travel Insurance

Best Cover For Your Holiday

Avanti travel insurance QR The Real Japan

Japanese Kitchen Knives

For centuries, the art of forging Japanese kitchen knives has been passed down from generation to generation. Hiroyuki Tazawa, a passionate artisan, established Yoshimune Kitchen Knives to keep this tradition alive and flourishing.

Yoshimune Knives website

Yoshimune Knives

Authentic Japanese Kitchen Knives

Yoshimune Knives QR The Real Japan

Travel Luggage

If there's something I've learned in decades of travelling its that having the right luggage for the journey can save you a lot of hassle and headaches. From cabin bags, to suitcase sets, backpacks for adventure or business travel, duffle and specialist camera bags, look no further.

Samsonite site The Real Japan travel resources


Durable & Innovative Travel Luggage

Samsonite QR The Real Japan

Accessible Travel Site

Accessible Japan provides disabled readers with information on accessible travel in Japan to help with their trip planning. It has accessability guides, tips on using transportation, lists and reviews of accessible hotels and attractions. It also has a number of topic-based discussion forums.

VPN (Virtual Private Network) Services

Aside from securing your online access using encryption, if you want to use Facebook in Japan or access streaming services while away, a VPN can help. It changes your IP address and redirects your connection to the internet through a remote server - unblocking your favourite sites you use at home. Suitable both for business or personal use.

The Real Japan Travel Hubs

Whether you're planning your first trip to Japan or your tenth, our Planning Travel Hub will get you started.
The choice of incredible places to see in Japan can be overwhelming. Our Destinations Travel Hub will guide you.
Japan offers a never-ending supply of unforgettable experiences. Use our Experiences Travel Hub to discover your next memories.

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