Selective Hearing’s Japan Trip Planning Guide Part 1 – Getting Started

Many of you who listen to J-Pop most likely have the dream of some day going to Japan. After all, that is the birthplace and mecca of all that fans of the genre love. And for most, it is the ultimate goal to step foot on what they consider holy land at least once in their life.

The thing is a lot of people talk about wanting to go, but they have a difficult time taking their words and turning them into actions. That’s where we, your friends at Selective Hearing come in. Here to take your hot air and turn it into reality.

Let’s start right from scratch and ask yourself why do you want to go to Japan. Seems like a simple question right? Well not exactly. We all have our different reasons for wanting to go and “… just because.” is not a valid reason.

Let me give you a couple of examples. When I first went to Japan in 2007 it was because I was into female Japanese figure skaters so I attended the World Figure Skating Championships; which coincidentally happened to be in Tokyo that year and witnessed the other Mikitty (Miki Ando) skate her way to a championship.

On my recent trip back in August I was there because of AKB48, general geeking out over idols and to hang out with some cool folks that I have been associating with for quite a while. That trip is where I fulfilled my dream of seeing a full blown idol concert in a major Japanese venue.

Both times I had an air tight purpose for going and perhaps it’s a good idea that you have one as well. I’m not suggesting that you plan every waking hour of your trip ahead of time. But you know, have a general idea of why you’re going to spend a lot of time and money to travel from where ever you are.

Once you have your purpose established it’s time to get down to business. Finances will be your primary concern since you’re going to need to know how much money it’s going cost for the following:

  • Flight
  • Accommodations
  • Food
  • Local transportation
  • Daily expenses
  • Souvenirs

There of course many other things but those are just the basics. This is where things get tricky because we all have different needs and depending on yours, one thing may be more expensive than the other either out of necessity or vanity.

You might have to sacrifice a bit of money for your flight and spending money if you want to live in the lap of luxury in a baller hotel. If you have friends or family who don’t want stuff from Japan you can allocate funds that would go to souvenirs to yourself for daily expenses and stuff for yourself.

These are things you’re going to have to think about seriously so you don’t end up fucking yourself over. Nothing is worse than running out of money when you’re away from home. And unlike in North America, an ATM isn’t exactly the most accessible thing when you’re in Japan. (More on that as this series goes on.)

We’ll get deeper into allocating money for your trip later. For now you should at least have something to brainstorm to get the ball rolling.

Of course we don’t have the answers to everything so if anyone else out there is willing to give their half a cent as related articles pop up, feel free to do so.

About Greg 1079 Articles
Greg is the creator, administrator, editor, code monkey, overlord and general jack of all trades at Selective Hearing. He can be found lurking among the overseas Asian pop fandom and bumming around Japan every year for some reason or another.


  1. Try out the JR Rail Pass if you intend to travel cross country (Tokyo To Hiroshima or Hiroshima To Hokkaido or Aoyama To Tokyo) multiple times

  2. Looking forward to this series – planning to go to Japan next year, so could pick up a tip or two.

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