Having bought a tour to Japan, your tour operator in Japan must provide a complete package of documents for the trip, with which you can go on the road. You must have: an air ticket, a voucher for a hotel in Japan, an insurance policy and a tour program. Do not forget to take a valid foreign passport, which should contain a visa to Japan for the period of your tour. It should also be remembered that you must be at the airport at least two hours before departure in order to go through passport and customs control before the end of check-in for the flight.
Japan: location. According to Thesciencetutor, the Land of the Rising Sun is located on four islands – Honshu, Hokkaido, Shikoku and Kyushu, which have a large extent from north to south.
Japan: capital. Tokyo is the largest metropolitan area in Japan.
Japan: language. The official language in Japan is Japanese. But you shouldn’t have any problems navigating the cities if you speak English. Almost all inscriptions in the subway and public transport are duplicated in English, and there are also English-speaking staff in hotels. But on the street, asking the necessary information from a passing Japanese, you can not always get an answer, since most of the population does not speak English. We recommend using the services of Russian-speaking guides, which can be found in licensed agencies.
Japan: visa. Traveling in Japan for citizens of Ukraine is impossible without a visa at the Consulate of Japan, which is mandatory for visiting the country. The visa is issued at the consular hotel of the Embassy of Japan in Ukraine (Kyiv) within 10 days.
Japan: features of customs control. Since May 2006, new rules for passing through passport and customs control when crossing the border have been introduced. Now, when passing, you must definitely go through the procedure of photographing and fingerprinting, as well as a short interview with a representative of the immigration service.
Duty-free import is allowed: no more than 100 pieces of cigars (20 packs of imported cigarettes), no more than 3 bottles of 0.7 liters of alcoholic beverages; two pairs of watches worth up to $3,000; objects and things worth no more than 10 thousand dollars.
It is forbidden to import into the country: drugs; books and photographs of obscene content; cold and firearms; a range of food items.
Japan: Climate and seasonality. The climate in Japan is temperate, with four distinct seasons: spring, summer, autumn and winter. The exception is the island of Hokkaido. The most favorable seasons for traveling to Japan are: the end of winter, the beginning of spring: from February – March to the beginning of June, and autumn from the end of September to December. Winter in Japan is quite cold, determined by the Siberian air mass, but in the mountainous regions of Hokkaido there are ski resorts offering first-class recreation. Summer in the northern and middle parts of Japan is rainy accompanied by winds, but in the southern part of Japan and on the island of Okinawa, whose location in the subtropical climate at this time of the year is the most favorable climate for recreation.
Japan: Time. Japan has the same time zone. The time difference with Ukraine in summer is + 6 hours, and in winter + 7 hours.
Japan: Currency. The monetary unit of Japan is the yen. 1 US dollar is approximately equal to 100 yen. You can pay in Japan both in cash and with international credit cards: Visa International, American Express or Master Card. You can use ATMs almost anywhere: on the street, in shops, in all hotels and restaurants.
Japan: tips. In general, in Japan it is not customary to give “for tea”. Usually, the service fee is included in the cost of the order. As a rule, this is from 10 to 20% of the total bill, but you can always thank porters at the hotel and guides at your request.
Japan: telephone. If you need to call within Japan or abroad, you can use any telephone set on the street or in a hotel. To do this, use coins 10 or 100, or magnetic cards (purchased separately). Two mobile communication standards 3G and CDMA are widespread in the country. Therefore, it is easy to rent a phone in Japan.
Regarding your mobile network roaming – you should check with your operator before leaving for Japan, most likely there may not be roaming.
Japan: electrical network. It should be remembered that in Japan the voltage and type of sockets in the network is different from what we are used to. Therefore, you should not take electrical appliances with you, or you need to stock up on adapters. If you plan to buy equipment, we recommend that you check with the sellers the possibility of using it with us.
Japan: dress etiquette. If you have a business meeting, then men must be in a tie, and women need to observe business etiquette in clothes and make-up. Everything should be discreet and follow the protocol of the reception or negotiations. There are no specific rules for tourists who come to rest in Japan, but it should be remembered that the country is quite conservative, and a very catchy appearance in the first half of the day is not welcome here. We also advise you to stock up on a sufficient amount of white socks, as even in restaurants you may be asked to take off your shoes.
Japan: official holidays. Japan today is universal for event tourism. Almost every month of the year there is a celebration in the country, which is often accompanied by a whole performance or festival. There are currently 14 public holidays in Japan. To plan dates for a trip to Japan, you should know that if a holiday falls on Sunday, then the day off will be on Monday as well.
New Year in Japan is celebrated on January 1, just like we do. These days, the cities of Japan are transformed into real puppet New Year’s villages, with bright elimination that illuminates each city in its own way.
The Japanese are especially attentive to health and age, which is why so many holidays are associated with these important concepts for a person. On January 15, Japan celebrates Coming of Age Day. On this day, boys and girls who have reached the age of 20 are congratulated.
One of the main holidays, revived from the depths of centuries, is the Day of the Foundation of the Empire. It is celebrated on February 11 and in the modern version is called the Day of the Foundation of the State of Japan.
In the spring, March 21, the Japanese celebrate one of the most important Buddhist holidays – Spring Equinox Day. This is a religious holiday, the cult of which is a special veneration of ancestors.
A holiday that is part of the golden week of celebrations, Greenery Day, is celebrated on April 29th. On this day, all of Japan will remind you of a blooming garden.
May 3 – Constitution Day.
Also a holiday of the golden week is May 5 – Children’s Day. Traditionally, across the country, families with children hang out multi-colored flags in the form of a carp, which is a symbol of vitality, resilience and courage.
The Japanese have long honored the natural elements, paying special attention to the water element. July 20 is the day of gratitude to the ocean – Sea Day, which opens the summer vacation season.
In September there is a holiday: Honoring the Elders Day (September 15). On this day, all the Japanese of advanced age are presented with gifts, with which they express their respect and gratitude. For the Japanese who have reached 100 years of age, congratulations and gifts come from the government.
September 23 – Day of the autumnal equinox.
For all residents of Japan, health comes first, this is connected with the traditions in Japanese food culture (it’s no secret that Japanese cuisine is the most healthy in the world) and with the traditions of visiting Onsen sources of longevity, known all over the world. Health and Sports Day, which is celebrated on October 10, is a confirmation of the promotion of a healthy lifestyle in the country, these days there are many events dedicated to the development of sports.
For those who would like to visit Japan during various parades and festivals, we recommend paying attention to November 3 – Culture Day. It is on these days that a huge number of exhibitions are held in Japan, and almost all museums host Open Days.
November 23 is Labor Day, formerly Good Harvest Thanksgiving Day.
The 125th dynasty of emperors, which has never changed over all the years of reign, is a confirmation of the high culture of the country, which annually celebrates the birthday of the living Emperor Akihito on December 23.