Your Japan adventure begins with an international overnight flight from the U.S to Tokyo.
Arrive in Tokyo where you will be greeted by our friendly ground crew and guided to the coach bus or airport shuttle bus to transfer to the hotel. Enjoy the remainder of the evening unwinding from your flight or start discovering Japan's high-octane capital, the world's most populous city.
A half-day Tokyo city tour awaits after breakfast this morning. With a knowledgeable guide to provide fascinating insights into the landmarks, visit the beautiful Imperial Palace Plaza, home to the current Emperor and his family. Admire the gardens, moats, and bridges before continuing the Asakusa and the Senso-Ji Temple, the oldest in Japan. Pass by the colorful stalls of Nakamise Street, and admire the elaborate Buddhist temple and its neighboring 5-story pavilion. Finish your tour in high-fashion Ginza, one of the world's most upscale shopping areas. Check out the luxury department stores, galleries, and either enjoy a return transfer to your hotel or opt to stay and explore at your own pace. Afterwards, enjoy time at leisure in this dizzying city, and tonight, cap your day with an optional Kaiseki Dinner, a traditional multi-course meal of numerous, intricately presented dishes made using fresh, seasonal ingredients.
Included: Breakfast at hotel
After an early breakfast, bid farewell to Tokyo and soak up the scenery as you journey to Mt Fuji, Japan's highest and most revered mountain. If the weather permits, trace the snaking roads to the mountain's 5th station, and witness the breathtaking views from 7,550 feet above sea level. Enjoy a scenic car ride on the Hakone Ropeway followed by a cruise on Lake Ashi to witness stirring panoramas of Mt Fuji. Have lunch independently during a stop along your travels today, taking the opportunity to try some of Japan's unique snacks and dishes. Tonight, relax over an included dinner at your hotel in the Lake Kawaguchi Region.
Included: Breakfast at hotel, Dinner
Following breakfast, travel to Kyoto, Japan's cultural heart. The country's capital for more than 1,000 years, Kyoto's history-steeped centre offers a clutch of intriguing UNESCO World Heritage sites. Take an afternoon sightseeing tour, visiting such gems as Nijo Castle, constructed in 1603 for the first shogun of Japan's Edo Period and the Kinkakuji Temple, famous for its gold-coated Golden Pavilion overlooking an idyllic lake. Another highlight is a visit to the hilltop Kiyomizu Temple, one of Japan's most celebrated temples, founded in 780 on the site of a waterfall. Enjoy free time for lunch on a break in your travels, and after your tour, check in at your Kyoto hotel and enjoy the evening at leisure.
Included: Breakfast at hotel
Spend today as you wish in Kyoto, either exploring the shops, restaurants, gardens, and teahouses on our own, or perhaps choosing to take an optional half-day excursion to Nara and Osaka. Check out the best of historical Nara, including its lovely Deer Park and Todaji Temple, famous for its Great Buddha. Continue to Osaka to visit one of Japan's most famous landmarks, Osaka Castle. This evening, you may opt to attend an optional Kyoto Culture Show at Kyoto's Gion Corner theater and then join your fellow travelers for dinner at a local restaurant.
Included: Breakfast at hotel
After breakfast, enjoy your journey back to Tokyo via the Tomei Expressway. Enjoy lunch independently at one of the service areas en route, where you'll find a great choice of Japanese foods and eateries. Alternatively, opt to travel to Tokyo on the 'Shinkansen' Bullet Train, and enjoy more free time in Kyoto before the train's afternoon departure. Experience the famous Bullet Train, which can travel at up to 189 mph and offers reclining seats, local refreshments, and picturesque scenery. Upon arrival in Tokyo, enjoy your final evening free in this pulsating city, perhaps dining out at one of its enticing restaurants.
Included: Breakfast at hotel
After breakfast, either spend the rest of your free time at leisure or join the optional tour to visit the famous Tsukiji Fish Market. Tsukiji fish market is the biggest wholesale fish and seafood market in the world and also one of the largest wholesale food markets of any kind. The market is located in Tsukiji in central Tokyo, and is a major attraction for visitors. This morning, we take the transfer to the Tsukiji Market, browse the vast collection of assorted seafood as well as meat products, and get an authentic local experience. In the afternoon, board your airport transfer to Haneda or Narita airport and bid farewell to Japan as you enjoy your flight back home. (Note: Airport transfer out is not provided for those extending their stay or land only travelers)
Included: Breakfast at hotel
Create your ideal getaway with the following upgrade options. Extensions and upgrades can be added during the booking process.
*Subject to availability; extension and upgrade options vary by tour
Enjoy a "kaiseki" dinner, a traditional Japanese meal consisting of approximately 7 to 8 small courses. A multi course banquet of seasonal delicacies, "kaiseki" meals appeal to all sense.
**Please note this is a set menu and will include dishes that contain meat and/or fish. We apologize but special meal requests cannot be accommodated.**
Enjoy a full day of excursion to Nara and Osaka. Visit the famous Todaiji (Great Eastern Temple) in Nara and see the world’s largest bronze statue of Buddha, enjoy the scenic beauty of Nara Park where over 1,200 wild Sika deer freely roam, and check out the impressive architecture of Kasuga Taisha Shrine before venturing into Japan’s most famous Osaka Castle where the famous Shoguns once reigned. Lunch at local restaurant is included.
A Japanese dinner will be arranged and hosted at a local restaurant in Kyoto. The evening’s entertainment will be a unique visit to the Gion Corner to experience the traditional performing arts that solidify Kyoto as the origins of Geishas and Maikos. Seven types of performance arts will be shown to visitors which include Kyo-mai
Japanese trains and subways are very clean and modern, and are amazingly punctual. Take on the super-efficient Shinkansen or Bullet Train (tourist class reserved seat) at speeds of up to 186 mph or 300 km per hour from Kyoto to Tokyo and arrive in the metropolis in less than 3 hours! You will then be
Tsukiji fish market is the biggest wholesale fish and seafood market in the world and also one of the largest wholesale food markets of any kind. The market is located in Tsukiji in central Tokyo, and is a major attraction for visitors. This morning, we take the transfer to the Tsukiji Market, browse the vast collection of assorted seafood as well as meat products, and get an authentic local experience.
Just came back from our first trip to Japan with Affordable World and I must say, it was an AMAZING trip! Affordable World was very helpful when I called to ask questions. It was my first time booking a tour with them. Everything was very well organized. Once we arrived to Japan we were picked up and shuttled to our hotel which was very nice with an incredible view! First couple nights we stayed at 21 East. Our tour guide Izumi was very helpful, friendly and knowledgeable! I highly recommend Izumi as a tour guide! I will definitely book with Affordable World again! Such a great experience.More Less
We bought the 9 day package and it was just the perfect amount of days. Our tour guide was very helpful & gave us some good tips on our leisure days. The hotels were also good. We plan on using them again for Greece. Review your trip when booking. Our first flight connected in Beijing with a 9 hour wait time, which was our fault, we didn’t review until days before departure. Just an advice to make this a perfect trip-review your flight schedule before finalizing your bookings.More Less
This trip was unbelievably amazing and a wish come true. I had always wanted to see Japan and experience their culture and thanks to Affordable World this actually happen! The complete tour plan and guide were exceptional, perfect and right on schedule and delivered as promised. I am so thankful for this trip that I will for sure come again through Affordable World. Also I am recommending this tour to all of my friends and family.More Less
Just got back from the tour yesterday. Sept 28- Oct 5, 2017. We were 20 in the group. Every one were so nice to each other. We were always on time. Our driver was hiro. He made our trip safe, he was so nice & kind.. Noriko was our tour guide, very professional . She even assisted us in the airport after the tour.. the hotels were great. Buffet breakfast also was good! Can't imagine affordable world made this package very inexpensive.. anyway.. will recomment affordable world to my friends. And will definitely book mu future trips with this company. Thank you!More Less
I just came back from my Japan tour with affordable Asia, highly recommended. Well organized. Our tour guide is Rumi Yamaguchi, very knowledgeable about history & culture. She uses her family experience to explained culture & tradition so its easy to understand. She spoke English well. When we arrived we were picked up at Narita Airport & dropped off at our Hotel 21, we were group of 7 people in the same flight decided to go to Shibuya using subway train. The following day started our guided tour. I recommend take the bullet train optional, Narra/Osaka & Tsukiji fish market. On our last day we went to tsukiji market tour & our tour guide took us to Odaiba Island, its an extra sight that she threw in, very nice of her. Saw they also have Lady Liberty built in the shore of Odaiba. Planning to go back, but want to see Greece first.More Less
Just got back from my trip. Rumi was our tour guide, she was amazing. Hotel East 21 great location walking distance to Toyocho T14 train station exit 1 you turn ride and you walk to the hotel about 7 minutes. Getting around Tokyo subways is so easy. People and culture are great. I recommend this trip. I recommend the bullet train and additional excursions. Singapore airlines great! Only two down falls was the six hour bus drive to Kyoto you'll see the beautiful seneries and Rumi and group did kareeookee on the bus. The lake hotel needs upgrading but scenery is beautiful.More Less
If you are having doubts about booking a tour, don't--just do it! Japan is everything I could have hoped for. Singapore Air is one of the best airlines to fly with. Everyone is friendly and helpful. Landing in Japan, you are immediately greeted by your tour guide. Ours, Ichirio, was phenomenal. He was so kind and very knowledgable about the places we went and the things we saw. The food and accommodations were spectacular. Every room we had in either Tokyo, Kyoto, and Hakone all had views. I can give you a day by day itinerary, but you can read that online. Just go. Go to Japan and have fun. One thing: my sister and I noticed we got a lot of help just by saying a few polite Japanese words. Teach yourself thank you, please, sorry, good morning, hello--just basic manners in Japanese and they will be really impressed you took the time to learn and attempt to communicate in their language.More Less
What can I say? I honestly cannot express how satisfied I am with the services I received from Affordable Asia. I had always wanted to visit Japan with my brother, and this trip made our childhood dreams come true! I wasn't sure at first because the deal just seemed to good to be true. However, everything was just wonderful. Singapore Airlines has been by far the very best airline! What an amazing experience! Upon arriving in Tokyo I was astonished to see our hotel a truly 5 star hotel with an excellent view. In fact, every single hotel room we got came with the best view. Our tour guide Yuko was just so nice and friendly! We definitely got to see the very best of the best in Japan. By the way PLEASE get the bullet train option as it is a once in a lifetime experience. All I can say is that I will be booking another trip soon! I am so excited to learn that they will now be offering tours in the Greek islands because I was thinking about going to Santorini for my honeymoon with my husband so I am ready to book my honeymoon trip, and this will be my next destination! Thank you AffordableAsia!More Less
A trip of a lifetime for our family of 8. Japan was the place to be this year for the family, since we love the culture, the people and the food. My two sons speak Japanese so it helps. Singapore Airlines, the flight time, the airport pick up and the schedule and places to go was all well planned. Timing was perfert, the food and hotels was more than what we expected of the tour price. So I should say it is affordable and worth the money. There is an opportunity for you to upgrade accomodations, airfare and optional tours if you want. We purchased majority of the optional tours and its was worth it. It was raining one day and I thought that we will cancel our tour but we did not and everything proceed accordingly. Our guide MR ICHIRO who is so knowledgable in both the Western and Japanese culture is exceptional not to mention the hard working Mr TENADA our tour driver who took care of making sure we travel safe, take care of our luggage making sure we have plenty of candy, wet wipes in the bus and always service us with a smile. He is so refreshing for tired and exhausted tourist! Mr. Ichiro acted as our care taker, translator and concierge for any and all needs. He always went over and beyond and always made sure we are happy and have everything we need before and after the end of each day. I cant stop talking about this trip and in fact I already told a few of my friends and business associates to check Affordable World (thank you Luann) and make sure to schedule a trip to JAPAN soon. If you are going to JAPAN, here is a few tips, make sure you sign up for the Japan Wifi service, very affordable and you need it if you want google maps (highly recommended to navigate the places to see and mode of transportation) and unlimited data for pictures, text and email. Your US phone and data plan will be more expensive. Make sure you get the 3 day unlimited Metro pass for Tourist and a PASMO card so you are covered for both Metro, JR lines, bus, snacks and others. It will certainly make your life stress free and convenient especially if you are staying longer than 8 days. I promise you will love Japan! I hope this helps. Thank you, CHATTYMore Less
We booked this trip through groupon and travelled in September. The weather was perfect, some days were hot but most comfortable. Age range of the group was mixed, there were a few families, a few couples in their 30's. We made really great friends and enjoyed the tour guide. The trip was quick and we felt like we were always packing and going on to the next but it was a great way to quickly see a lot of the country. The highlight was going to Lake Ashi, it was very cloudy that day and we felt like we were in the clouds. Japan is a beautiful country with great food, people and is very clean. In Kyoto we did the culture show and dinner and the show was not memorable, this would be one thing we wouldn't go see again. I would recommend this trip to anyone, its very fast paced as you see lots of the country but very much worth it. Most of the nights were free in all places, and getting around using the public transit was very easy. We also did the Thailand/Phuket tour through Groupon/Affordable World and that was also amazing.More Less
It was a much needed travel break for me. I am a Solo taveller and I found Affordable World's package to be great and pretty reasonable. I decided to take up this tour after sitting down and making calculations. This tour seemed like it fit my bill with a lot of inclusions and a day-by-day great planning. I will first write about the tour and then about hotels & Food towards the second paragragh. I visited in mid August 2016. We were around 27 people + guide + driver. 'Kyoko' was our guide. She was amazing!! She spoke English really well and arranged the tour very gracefully. Day 1 - Tokyo was good. We had 3 typhoons hit the area, so it rained cats & dogs in the morning when we visited Imperial Palace. It is quite different in rain, but so good to see it in that climate. Afternoon , no more rain and everything dried up creating humidity.Day 2- We left early for Hakone and Mr Fuji. We went up the ropeway and to base station 5 of Mt Fuji. We could not see the summit, but in the afternoon when we checked not Mt Fuji facing Hotel, we saw the summit clearly. We ended up enjoying the included dinner watching Mt Fuji's Summit. We got luckly there. I came to know it was not visible on any other days before and after we visiting Mt Fuji. Day 3 - We started the 6 hour ride towards Kyoto. We saw a great Japanese Drama movie ' The Departures' on the way. Kyoto was amazing!! Day 4 - I took an optional tour to Osaka & Nara. Again, well organized. Day 5- I took optional Bullet train experience. Do this. It will save your energy and time. We got reserved seats booked, so we sat in the same car. Others took the bus ride back and reached the same time we arrived in Tokyo. Not worth the traffic and hassle in the bus ride, I recommend splurging on bullet train! Day 6- I did not take Tsukiji Fish market tour, so my tour ended with this package. What I find commendable is that, I am a vegan / vegetarian in my eating habits. I made requests in advance with Affordable World. They went above and beyond to cater to me. On Day 2, Dinner was included - I got a special Vegan meal as per my request waiting when we arrived at the Hotel. On Day 4 in Osaka, lunch was included and again - absolutely delicous vegan Japanese lunch for arranged especially for ME! I am all praise for this company to do this for me as I was the only minority in food restrictions. I still cannot believe this was all arranged so well. The tour guide kept checking on me about all my meals and if I was doing ok or not. I can almost cry out of happiness. And not just plain salads - so many different kinds of soup, tofu, rice, pickles, vegetables. I got to eat a feast! Hotels - Every hotel we stayed at gave us toilet kit (toothpaste, brush, creams, lotions, shampoo) and a night dress (western style or a Japanese Yukata).We stayed at Sheraton and East 21 in Tokyo. Mt Fuji - Tomonoko Hotel. I know some people gave negative reviews on this one, but I found it superb. All rooms face Mt Fuji, we saw the summit. Bathroom was clean, high pressure water. Breakfast was hot and varied. No complains from my side. Kyoto - We stayed at Westin. Again, so good! Breakfast has all kinds of foods. Western style (Toasts, fruit, hash browns, eggs, meat, salad and juice/coffee/tea/water. FYI No Oatmeal) + Japanese style (Different kinds of Rice, japanese vegetables, Miso soups, Udon noodles, toppings, Tofu etc). Make sure you try Japanese breakfast items. It is a great way to sample local food. Have currency ready to buy local foods during lunch stops. Not expensive, but expect to pay $10 on average for a solid meal. Eat a heavy breakfast so you can skip spending on snacks and save some $$. Try Ramen for sure. I went out on my own to Tokyo station to try Vegan Ramen. Try Green Tea ice creams on your journey. $3 or so. And rice balls and Japanese sweets called Wagachi. These are all easy to buy everywhere and not expensive. You will get time to shop around in the evenings in Kyoto and Tokyo. Try to use free shuttles from Hotels to nearest train station and catch local metro trains to go around some places. Tokyo is very cool and has lot of offer. Lastly, Kyoko, our guide was so helpful. She constantly make the tour easy to follow on time tables, gave us songs and short stories on Japanese culture and provided information on plans out of the tour. I highly recommend this and I will go back to Japan!More Less
Disclaimer: This is a pretty extensive review on this trip, because every single minute and dollar spent was worthwhile and memorable. Going to Japan has been a dream of mine since I was a kid, and this trip helped me fulfill my dream. I decided to take this trip last minute after finding the Groupon deal. At first I was skeptical, because the process was too easy. Fill in the blanks, pay for the trip, read your confirmation e-mail, and wait for your travel documents. Day 1: We flew from LAX via Singapore Airlines. My bf and I got to sit next to each other on our non-stop flight. The airline had amazing customer service and great food with different selections. Upon arrival to Narita, we were immediately greeted by Affordable World(AA) and boarded the bus to our first hotel in Tokyo. The hotel was nice and comfortable, in a mostly residential area, and was walking distance from the train station. It was also across the street from a Lawson, which is a convenient store that you will see everywhere. Day2: We started our tour the next day and met Noriko, our tour guide, and Hiro, our bus driver, whom the group loved. They were a great team, made the group feel safe, made as laugh, as well as provided tons of great information about Japan. We spent half the day on the guided tour, and we were given PLENTY of time to ourselves (around 1pm). In Japan, public transportation is amazing and extremely prompt so we were able to see many sights on our own. On our first day, we also made tons of friends from our group. Day 2: It was an early day spent driving half the day to the Mt Fuji area. The ride itself was an experience. Rest stops in Japan are not like any I've ever seen. The food in the rest stops is better than in some of the restaurants I've been to. It was also February, so we were able to see some snow and got to play in it. We were able to see Mt. Fuji for miles. We settled into our hotel, which had an onsen. For dinner, we had a beautiful set-up (which came with the tour) and was able to dine with our new friends from the group. The food was delicious, of course. Day 3: We spent this day exploring the Mt. Fuji area, riding the ropeway, and taking the cruise in Lake Kawaguchi. The sights were incredible. Day 4: We left the area to head to Kyoto. It had a completely different vibe, older and more traditional. We saw the sights, as described in the itinerary. Then, we settled into our hotel. That hotel was directly across the street from the train station (where you take the bullet train), which was an attraction itself. Day 5: We had this day completely free. Some people took an excursion to Nara and Osaka. My group and I took the train for a short ride to Universal Studios and spent the whole day there. Day 6: I took the bullet train, so I was able to control a lot of my day/time. One of the best things about this tour is that your time is what you make of it. We weren't forced to take the guided tours, and we were given plenty of time to ourselves. I do suggest planning your free time to get the best experience though. Last day: Decided to take the optional tour to the fish market, where I had the best sushi and seafood I've ever had in my life (I grew up in California). We also got to see Odaiba, a man-made island. If you've ever seen a picture of the giant Gundam moving statue, that's where it is. We left for the airport shortly after that. Overall, it seems like a short trip but if you plan wisely and learn how to take public transportation, you'll get to do and see a lot. Also, all the hotels provided complimentary toothbrushes, toiletries, even hairbrushes (disposable). The price cannot be beat at all. I'm even considering taking this trip again. Good luck and I hope this review was helpful.More Less
I had a wonderful time during this tour, and it didn't even start off well. LAX withheld my luggage, and I didn't get them for 3 days. But Izumi-san made calls daily on my behalf for the status of my luggage. She is very knowledgeable of Japanese history and locations. The bus rides were very informative! And I loved roaming around Japan. The food was so good and reasonably priced! In short, thank you Affordable World for offering this, and thank you Izumi-san!More Less
This tour came up as a Groupon special. At first I was hesitant, because I had never heard of Affordable World, but I researched reviews of their tours, and found that their feedback was very positive. The price was certainly right, so my wife and I signed up for the Japan Discovery tour. The bottom line is that this turned out to be one of the best trips that we have ever taken! Our guide, Rumi Yamaguchi, was absolutely great. She used the motor coach travel time to teach us about Japan's history, traditions, and customs, all with a wonderful sense of humor. She even gave us a briefing on the operation of high-tech toilets found in the hotels! The hotels on the trip were all first rate, with the exception of the Route Inn near Mt. Fuji. I had read other reviews that noted this hotel, so I was prepared. This hotel has a great location, which explains why it is used. It was a bit shabby, but was clean and quiet. To paraphrase another reviewer, you can survive one night on a lumpy mattress. The other three hotels were very upscale 4-5 stars. Transfers were all easy and smooth, and the bullet train ride from Kyoto back to Tokyo was a fun experience. The only difference that I can see between Affordable World tours and those offered by the more expensive big-name tour companies is that you have to take your own bags from the bus to your room and back. For the difference in price, that is a very small concession. The only down side at all is that I found Affordable World to be non-responsive to email messages, although I was pleasantly surprised that I was immediately connected to a real person the two times that I called them. A note of caution to anyone like myself with knee joint problems: The basic tour and the add-on excursions involve a lot of walking, which was not an issue with me, but also many hundreds of stair steps, ranging from shallow to ridiculously steep. This is definitely not the fault of Affordable World, so I guess that I will blame the Buddhist monks and Shoguns who built the shrines, temples and castles. Just be aware that there is a lot of stair climbing.More Less
My nine year old son and I chose this trip to Japan for spring break, and we loved every minute of it! Everything we encountered in Japan was fascinating, and our guide, Rumi Yamaguchi, added an extra level of enjoyment and insight into the culture. The people we encountered were all very friendly, polite and respectful. Rumi added a wonderful personal touch by sharing her life experiences to teach us about the life and culture in Japan. She also went above and beyond her duty as our guide by taking us through Kyoto Station after a full day of tours, and by helping us find a cat cafe on our last night in Tokyo. The group on our tour was pretty eclectic and interesting, and we enjoyed meeting people throughout the week on the bus rides and tours. Some of the things we did outside the tours were going to Joypolis in Odaiba after the morning tour on the first day in Tokyo, going to the Manga Museum and Kyoto tower in Kyoto (which we had time for by taking the bullet train excursion), and going to Nyanny Cat Cafe and some large manga stores in the Akihabara district on our last night in Tokyo. The group of ramen restaurants in the Kyoto station were fun, but the best ramen we had was actually at the base of Hakone ropeway by Lake Ashi. I recommend trying everything you can in the vending machines and snacks from convenience stores (mostly 7-11's). Learn 'sumimasen' and 'arigato gozaimasu' and a few other words before you go!More Less
I really enjoyed this tour. Our guide , Izumi, was wonderful . From start to finish we were informed every step of the way. All of the accommodations were above expectations. Breakfast was included each morning , a wonderful buffet of Japanese as well as western fare. I did take all of the tour packages offered which made for a really busy vacation. The Japanese dinner extra tour was not what I expected. Yes, it was beautiful to look at; tasty, but not exceptional; was already placed when we entered the room so most of the food was barely warm. I would skip this. The Gion Corner theatrical performance I would skip. Not done by professionals and some parts were really bad. Also, the fish market can be done on your own when you go Ginza, don't pay extra for this. Also, wear waterproof shoes to the fish market. It's wet and fish guts are everywhere. Don't eat before you go to the fish market. There is so much really really fresh sushi and other foods you will want to try. Osaka / Nara I enjoyed. The Osaka lunch is on a very exciting street, what you would see in movies of a busy Japanese life. Take the bullet train. It's exciting and saves a lot of travel time. You have a couple free hours before boarding the bullet to buy a kimono. Pros: organized, great guide and driver, great hotels, great included tours, hotels include all the necessities. Don't pack shampoo, toothpaste, etc.. You will get more than you need., public transportation is very easy, use it to get around instead of the optional tours., Cons: cold food on some of the meals. Good intentions here to have everything ready for us but the outcome was cold tempura and other Foods that should have been served hot. not great communication from Affordable World, not enough time to shop. I'm not a big shopper but I Did want to buy things to remind me of my time in Japan. You will have about 15 minutes on each day to buy souvenirs. Skip some of the optional tours to sightsee and shop on your own., spend a lot of time traveling by plane, and bus. Be prepared for a numb butt.More Less
Nariko was the very best tour guide- she gave us more than just info about where we went. She also gave us insights into current Japanese culture and daily life. This tour is the perfect balance of scheduled and free time. We had a full day in Kyoto and did not do the optional tour. It was incredible! My only regret was not getting more candy. The only downside to this trip was that the food at the Tominiko hotel at Mt. Fuji. The dinner and breakfast were the worst out of the whole trip- so be sure to bring snacks or eat a big lunch in Hakone. I remember seeing some reviews on here mentioning this, and they are all correct. Even though the food there was so horrible, the Onsen made up for it. Don't be nervous- just do the onsen, it's amazing. I also wish there was more info about the schedules upfront regarding free time. We we're trying to meet a friend one of the days but didn't know what time would work. There's plenty of wifi at the hotels, so we were able to work something out. Just list a bunch of extra things you want to do ahead of time- because there is a lot of free time. I was nervous to do such a big trip through this online service and a groupon deal, but everything was fine and exceeded my expectations. I want to go back!!More Less
We went on the tour in June, 2015. The trip exceeded our expectations and we hope to go back to Japan and explore other parts of the country someday. For us, the reason for traveling outside our own country is to learn about the history and culture of the region. Thus, we really appreciated that our tour guide, Rumi Yamaguchi, spent a lot of time on the bus explaining the customs and culture of the Japanese people. We have gained a new respect for the Japanese people. When you are on a tour, you are frequently shuffled along from one place at such a hectic pace that you don’t time to slow down soak in the environment or interact with the locals. We liked this tour because it provided us with a lot of free time so that we can choose the activities we wanted to do or just relax and soak in the ambiance. The breakfasts provided were great. Dinner buffet at the hotel near Mt. Fuji was our worst meal during the entire trip. I recommend you stock up at the Seven/eleven store before getting to the hotel. There are not any other restaurants that you can go to eat at otherwise. Suggestion to the tour company for improvement: One thing I think would have made the trip better was if we were given a daily schedule at the beginning of the trip outlining when the free time would be or the duration of the free time so that we can plan our activities better. We understand that traffic and weather can change the activities on your schedule and our tour guide cannot be assured of the exact times but I think have a rough estimate would have been nice. Recommendation for people joining this tour: Because you have a decent amount of free time and the locals do not really speak English (not even the information desk at the train stations and the hotel staff could speak more than a sentence or two), do some homework before you leave and read up on how to navigate the subways. We used the Japan Train App which tells you which line to take and calculates how much it cost from one stop to the next so that you can buy the ticket for the appropriate amount if you are not buying the day pass. There are several apps you can download to use and some will work even without WIFI. If you are planning on exploring on your own, expect to do a lot of walking. The Tokyo hotel (Okura East 21) to subway train station is a 10-15 minute walk each-way.More Less
We enjoyed our trip immensely. Our guide was Noriko and she did a great job of informing us about our venues and arrangements. The hotels in Tokyo and Kyoto turned out to be a Sheraton and Westin. The rooms were large by Japanese standards, the hotels are a bit tired, but for the price no complaints. The hotel in Hakone was Japanese style and offered a mineral bath. Several of the women on the trip indulged. We took the bullet train back from Kyoto and highly recommend it. We also did the Nara and Osaka tour, which was also well worth it. We extended three days in Toyko and did a day trip to Nikko. This was a great trip, though a long day. If you're going to travel all the way to Japan, tack on some extra time if you can. The actual tour is chock full and you will be on the moveMore Less
I really enjoyed this tour group with Affordable World. Everything was so well organized, from start to finish. I am an experienced traveler, but this was my first time taking a tour and I didn’t know what to expect. From the time our package booking information came in the mail, it was clear we were in good hands. I especially appreciate our tour group leader, Noriko who was off the charts; perfect. She was so conscientious, so knowledgeable and so thorough. She made each of us in a group of about 30 feel special and well taken care of. Our Japan tour group included young adults in their 20’s, lots of middle age-50 somethings and seniors with somewhat limited mobility. There is a lot of walking and a lot of stairs, so the pace was steady, but easy. It seems everyone was satisfied and happy with the tour. There was a nice balance of structured time and free time. Being more adventurous, I seized the free time and went off on the Tokyo and Kyoto metro and saw many additional things that were not on the tour. There are also many optional additions, of which the most impressive was the bullet train back to Tokyo; which saved us an all-day bus trip back and is therefore highly recommended. Last but not least, we had a really wonderful and skilled bus driver named Hiro, who was very professional and kind, holding the all-important umbrella for us and handling our luggage at every turn. This was the one week tour, and the food and the accommodations were all first rate. Most were very western, with a dash of Japanese and the breakfast buffet was always a combination of western and Japanese cuisine. Our traditional hotel in Hakone had monkeys jumping in the trees on the premises, and it asked us to dress in the provided traditional attire before eating a traditional Japanese dinner. The only negatives I would add are that the first 2 days, are really just the long plane ride from the U.S.A. and that the group leader never provided us with an opportunity to “meet and greet” the other group members. If you wanted to socialize, you were on your own to connect with the others, which of course, we had plenty of time to do! Again though, I loved this tour and was highly satisfied.More Less
We had such a fabulous time on our trip! Our tour guide, Rumi, was amazing! She was so knowledgeable and provided such insight into Japanese history and culture. She was also extremely friendly and went above and beyond to accommodate us. We went in June during "rainy season," but we got lucky and it did not even rain very much. Japan is such a fascinating and beautiful country, and I'm so glad this trip allowed us to see so much of it even in a short period of time. I highly recommend the Nara and Osaka excursion. We had a blast seeing and learning about the different cities, petting the friendly deer, and eating the shabu-shabu lunch. Even with that, we still found time to visit other places in Kyoto (i.e. Fushimi Inari Shrine, monkey park, Sagano bamboo forest). We also had time to see plenty in Tokyo, both included in the guided tour and in our free time. Mt. Fuji was glorious, and the experience of a traditional Japanese style hotel was fantastic. I also highly recommend taking the bullet train back from Kyoto to Tokyo, as it's a convenient, fun and much more comfortable alternative to another 6 hour coach bus ride back. Some people also were able to switch their bullet train ticket for a different time that day depending on their plans.More Less
It was a great experience from start to finish. Our tour guide, Rumi Yamaguchi, was excellent - nice and informative. Accommodations were great. I enjoyed the fact that our days with Rumi-San were generally done by the early afternoon, allowing us to explore our surroundings on our own. If I had to nitpick, the only thing that could be improved upon is maybe foregoing the tour to Ginza, and substituting it for something else, as I feel most of the stores there could be found in the United States. Regardless of that, everything was great. I feel we're better equipped to go back and explore the country on our own now.More Less
Our guide Rumi Yamaguchi talked about herself 80% of the time, even pass on picture albums of herself. I did not pay and go to Japan to learn about her personal life. The tour focused too much on shrines. The optional fish market tour should be done in the beginning of the tour, it was done on the last day where we got soaked and got fish scent and there is no time to change our clothes or shoes because they are already packed for the trip home to the US! Yuk! We should have been told on how much walking is involved on every tour. Time on each location is very tight, too much pressure, can't even do any light shopping because of time constraint..More Less
This was a great experience for me to explore Japan and learn about a different culture. Following are the areas I was not satisfied with: 1. Meals on Plane were not selected for me based on my dietary restrictions. 2. Tour group size was just too large (33 people) 3. Tour Guide did not take inside and explained things to us as a guided tour should. He explained things on the Bus before reaching the destination.More Less
We enjoyed our tour with Affordable World very much, and felt that it was good value for the money. We were very pleased with our guide's knowledge and professionalism. We were impressed with the quality of service on Singapore Airlines, and the hotel in Tokyo (Okura Hotel East 21, as well as the services of the guide and drivers. Gion Corner and the dinner in Kyoto, and the Nara/ Osaka excursions were add-ons that enhanced our trip, and we were very glad that we took the bullet train from Kyoto to Tokyo instead of taking a very long bus ride. We did take the Tsukiji fish market tour, and enjoyed it, but we probably could have done this one on on our own via the metro. We did enjoy our time at Hakone/ Mt. Fuji, and we were glad this was all handled by Affordable World.More Less
This was a trip of a lifetime! Everything about this adventure was first class. I would have never been able to do as much as we did on my own (especially since this was my first time in Japan). Machida-san is an amazing guide, who made the tour as comfortable as possible. Even the airline was incredible (Singapore Air is the best). I cannot recommend this enough. I will definitely take more tours with Affordable World.More Less
All the hotels were excellent, but I am rating the Tokyo hotel "good" only because of the location. It was quite far away from downtown Tokyo (Shibuya, Shinjuku, etc.) and it was also far away from the subway station, so those two things made it inconvenient to get around. Usually I wouldn't consider that distance too far to walk, but on the last day of the tour we had to pull our large suitcases all the way to the subway (we were moving to another hotel, and there were no hotel shuttles in the afternoon). Also, when we were coming back from a long day of sightseeing, it seemed like a very far distance to walk. I would rather pay a little bit more for a more conveniently located hotel. I've been on a lot of guided tour vacations in my life, probably 15+, and Rumi is probably the best tour guide I have ever had. She has an extremely likeable and friendly personality. But what set her apart is that we really felt like she was sharing a part of her life and city with us. She would tell us lots of stories from her life to help us understand Japanese culture, and she prepared a lot of personal photos. Not to mention, she is also extremely funny. It made a lot of the time on the bus pass by faster. I've been on a lot of tours where the long hours on the bus were not fun at all. Rumi prepared a lot of activities for us to do on the bus, such as origami, karaoke, teaching us Japanese, etc. I would recommend that you use Rumi for your tours as much as possible. I also really enjoyed the itinerary, which was very efficient and allowed us to see a lot of things. I love the optional tours concept because it offers so much flexibility. Needless to say, this was one of the most enjoyable vacations I have ever taken, and the price was great. I would not hesitate to take another Affordable World tour. Thank you!More Less
Our tour guide Rumi was incredible. I have taken many tours in my travels the past two decades but Rumi is by far the best guide we have ever had. She gave us an amazing understanding of Japanese culture. Since she studied history in school she had so much to tell us about Japanese politics and way of life. Moreover, since we extended our stay and were not coming back with the tour to the airport she wrote us a sweet handwritten note telling us how to get to the airport on our own for our flight home. She even wrote down our names in Japanese. I was so sad when our tour ended, solely because I would miss Rumi so much.More Less
We had a wonderful time on our trip. Our guide Roomy Yamaguchi was great in explaining about Japan culture and historical places. I wish if we had little extra free time to explore during guided tours. The number of people and the coach was comfortable. Overall it was a nice experience travelling as a group with Affordable World.More Less
Great introduction to Japan for the price. Rumi did a outstanding job as our guide- she was very helpful in informing us about the Japanese culture, language, and history with a wonderful sense of humor. Would have liked more help from Affordable World on up-grading seating on the flights to and from Japan.More Less
My dad, two brothers and I took this Tokyo/Mt. Fuji/Kyoto trip for my dad's 70th birthday and was worth every penny. The flight, hotels, and tours were all much higher quality than I expected for the price. The hotels in Tokyo and Kyoto were very nice. The hotel at Mt. Fuji was an older roadside hotel and was just ok. Our tour guide, Izumi, was excellent. She spoke very loud and clear. She was very knowledgeable and was happy to answer any questions. The tours of Tokyo, Mt. Fuji (including the lake cruise & sulfur springs), and Kyoto were just awesome! I just wish our stop at Nijo Castle was a little longer. It was a bit rushed in order for us to get to the other stops. We opted for the Bullet train back to Tokyo instead of taking the bus. This was a good option as it allowed us to relax in Kyoto a bit and take a 2 1/2 hour train rather than the 7 hour bus ride. I would recommend doing. The fish market tour was also worth taking. On this, we stopped at the fish market, an area with the Statue of Liberty, and the mall. We did not take the Nara/Asaka Excursion. My dad was worn out and decided to check out the Bamboo Forest and Philosophers Path instead. Both are really nice walks. The flight, tours, guide, hotels, and food were all excellent and well worth the trip. My only complain is about Affordable World's customer service. We had an issue with our seats on the flight being moved on us. The customer service agent told me I was being rude and I should call President Obama if I want them changed - Wow! I was pretty floored. Luckily our seats got straightened out by the airline. Besides this one lady I talked to, the other agents were pleasant and helpful. I hope she is no longer employed there and that Affordable World does some customer service training. We had a great time on this trip and I have already recommended this to several friends. This was an affordable vacation, but it didn't feel like one. I love Japan and can't wait to go again!More Less
Our tour guide, Yu Kiko was FANTASTIC! THe bus drvier was also superb. THe Tokyo and Kyoto hotels were really good. The Mt. Fuji/Lake Kawagushi was somewhat troublesome because of the "hike" necessary to get to the hotel from the parking lot. In Kyoto, unfortunately there was too little time to enjoy the Water Temple grounds. Also, the walk at night to the restaurant was too long after a long day. All in All, the tour was a wonderful experience and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.More Less
Our tour guide, Keiko Joji, was fabulous and greatly enhanced the enjoyment of our tour. The bus driver, Mr. Terada, was also outstanding. Only disappointment was not being able to reserve seats on the flights. One would think that Affordable World would have been able to coordinate the reservation of seats since they were purchasing in a block.More Less
Absolutely wonderful worry free tour - starting from the interesting itinerary and ending with the final trip to the airport. Travel documents were mailed in timely manner.. During the phone conversations staff was very helpful. It was good amount of tourists /38/. At the airport we were met by the wonderful tour guide who cared about each client within the whole trip. Rumi /name of the tour guide/ studied English in the US. She is native Japanese, knows tremendous amount of very interesting information and is willing to pass her love and respect to her motherland to each tourist. She is highly professional, knows how to please clients, ready to come with help to each person in need with her advise. We had highly professional and modest driver. Hotels are high class, located comparatively close to the subway /in Tokyo/ or provide the free shuttle bus to the rail station with the stops in the downtown /Kyoto/. In those two hotels the toilet seats are heated with quiet big selection of buttons to use. The hotel close to the mount Fuji is little old-fashioned /everybody has to take the shoes off/ but offers besutiful lake view and free Hot Spring for everybody. For the buffet breakfaxt In each hotel is served the mixture of Japanese and continental food with the huge selection of meals. Optional tours are interesting, especially Nara and Osaka. If you have enough strength and money - join all of them. Japan is beautiful. It is very neat country. There are no garbage cans, but you wouldn't find garbage nowhere. We did not see even one pot hole during so many miles of traveling.. People are friendly, polite, bow for any reason, willing to help tourists. Food is tasty and portions are huge. Subway is extremely clean and easy to commute toward all points of view. /keep the ticket till the end of your trip, because you need to insert it in the machine before you exit the station/. During daily trips almost every hour is the food and toilet stop /free and clean toilets/ , souvenir shops, food courts. In all wending machines you can buy hot and cold drinks. Prices are reasonable. It is better to have Japanese money /you can exchange after arrival at the Airport or in the machine in the Tokyo hotel/. Singapore lines offer a lot of food and free alcohol drinks, free Wi-fi, headphones. I will highly recomend trip to Lapam with Affordable World company. Thanks. Have fun!!!!!!!More Less
We had a wonderfull time and our guide Rumi was very good and worked very hard. There was one man on our tour that was very unpleasant. He made racist comments and had no manners. He was rude to Rumi and she was very patient with him. We were very embarassed by his behavior . Other than that we had a very good time. At the Kaiseki dinner we were dissappointed that they suggested some sake, and didnt tell us the price until the end, it was very expensive and more than we wanted to spend on sake.More Less
I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to Japan. Singapore Airlines was wonderful, and it started my trip on a positive note. The hotel accommodations were excellent, and the sightseeing tours were well planned. I appreciated the efforts of our guide, Machida Masayuki, to ensure our travels were safe and worry-free. I hope to return to Japan to experience more of this culture.More Less
Affordable World exceeded my wife and my epectctations! Our tour guide Rumi Yamaguchi was personable informative and hit it out of the park with her knowledge and great humor! We would recommend Affordable World to anyone and look forward to another vacation with Affordable World. Our experience is a treasure. The itinerary was great and we want to state again that Rumi was fantastic. Sincerely Doug and Winona PhillipsMore Less
Great trip. Hotels in Kyoto and Tokyo were excellent. Guide was very helpful and informative. She went out of her way to help! Excursions were well planned and provided a good overview of Japan highlights. We took our two adult children. Singapore Airline flight was service and comfort was also excellent. This trip was an excellent value as well.More Less
Just got back from an amazing trip to Japan. Our guide, Mike was amazing and very knowledgable. Everything went smoothly from arrival to our departure. I definitely recommend extending your trip as there is so much to see. The hotels were nice but quite far from the main areas. It's definitely worth investing in a day subway pass. I highly recommend this tour. I'm looking forward to booking another trip through AffordableWorld.More Less
I was super skeptical about booking a tour with Groupon. But I really wanted to go to Japan for my 40th birthday. I could not have been happier!! My husband and I kept saying to each other: I can't believe what a steal this is! Starting with flying to Tokyo on Sinfapore Airlines! Like just the best flight ever! Super efficient and the crew was awesome. So accommodating and we were fed. Well fed. Snacks on the hour. Drinks all throughout. Really a class act. The tour started off rocky when we landed. A couple people were MIA. Which delayed our bus ride to the hotel. Which made people grouchy. Myself included. Tokyo is 1.5 hours away from the airport. Wow. Did not expect that. Our hotel in Tokyo was clean. I loved the warm toilet seats!!! And the bidet was heavenly. They had face wash, shampoo and conditioner and body easy: Shiseido. Lovely. Many shops around and there was a grocery in the building! (Go to the 100yen store:) Yoko, our tour guide was the highlight of the whole experience. love love love her! Very knowledgeable and sincere. Listen to her especially when she teaches you how to navigate the subway system. My Fuji was majestic. Check out the ramen place when u stop at the black egg spot. U have to order on a vending machine! So cool! The hotel was awesome! Try the outside onsen. Just lovely! Go past the vending machines and the massage chairs were much needed treat! Kyoto is temples galore! Please enjoy the triangular mochi treats so good. I kick myself everyday that I didn't buy more:( avail of the Osaka/Nara trip. Osaka was the bomb. They have a street that looks like ur in Vegas! So cool! Try the takoyaki!!!! So good! In Nara, don't feed the deer. The bullet train/Shinkansen is an experience. Splurge. It's worth it! We extended 5 more days, it's was like an extra $50 charge. But well worth it to explore on your own! Go to Shibuya, harajuku and Roppongi via subway. Awesome times to be had! We loved Japan. We would come back anytime!More Less
Traveled end of October early November. Flew out on Singapore Airlines A380 something my husband wanted to experience, a first for us. All good and on time. Arrived to be met with a lady holding a sign so you didn’t waste time trying to find a bus or anything. Once all the party was accounted for we all boarded our coach to the hotel. It was all very organized and easy and once there we were given our room keys and as it was late after a long flight we pretty much wanted to find a bite to eat and then crash out for the following morning start. Hotel had a good breakfast with a huge variety of dishes Japanese and American so everyone was satisfied. Then we met our main guide Norika. A very nice helpful lady who made the trip very interesting and pointed out all the various sites on the way to visit Tokyo downtown. A vibrant city with plenty of high end shops. Very similar to London’s Oxford Street to me seen as I am from there. The following day we went to Mount Fuji and stayed in a Japanese styled room. It was interesting and an experience but not something I would do for a week. Hotel was basic, but you are of course a captive audience and pretty much at the mercy of the only convenient hotel to wake up to an absolutely amazing view of Mount Fuji. It was perfect. That made up for the basic accommodation and all was forgotten. Then after Mount Fuji we went to Kyoto and that was well worth visiting with gorgeous sunset from the temple. It was very pleasant and plenty of souvenir shops and eateries, we tried the green tea ice cream which was tasty. The following day we took the optional tour to Nara and Osaka. I think most people took advantage of the optional tours as how often do you go to Japan. In a nutshell the Tokyo trip was intense, in the sense of no time was wasted you literally saw everything. The group was a mixture of 20 something to 70 plus. All very pleasant and friendly. It was enhanced by Norika who was intuitive of your needs and had a sense of humor. We both came home having been introduced to a new culture with wonderful people and an amazing experience of a lifetime.More Less
First of all our tour guide, Yamaguchi, Rumi, was amazing. She was so knowledgeable and fun! Couldn't have asked for a better tour guide! Overall this trip was amazing! First time out of the US and to Japan. The hotels were so nice and so was everything else. Better than I was expecting for a price this good! My only complaint would be that we got behind in our tour the second day because of a Japanese holiday on Sunday and Monday and continued to be behind for most of the tour. Things were a but rushed and even if they we weren't behind in the tour because of a holiday I still feel it might have been a bit rushed. There's just so much to see in certain areas a little more time would have been nice. But still, overall this trip was amazing. A dream come true. I would definitely book another vacation through Affordable World!More Less
I had a great time! The tour guide was amazing, Rumi Yamaguchi, loved her. Great first time experience with Affordable World, keep up the good job. I'm looking forward to booking a tour with you in the future. The only thing that was not so great was the hotel near Mt Fuji. It was clean but not very welcoming in terms of how the room looked and it smelled bad. All in all I'm a very happy customer! Had a great vacation as a single traveler.More Less
our tour guide, Miss Rumi Yamaguchi, went above and beyond her duties to make the trip a wonderful experience and to help us with some personal issues. this was expressed by others in the group as well. please continue to retain her services. the itinerary for the trip was great as were the accommodations and activities. i am a second time very satisfied customer who continues to spread the word about your great company. thank you!!!More Less
Our trip to Japan was AMAZING! Everything was really well organized and comfortable, and our tour guide Rumi was GREAT! She was personable and engaging, and taught us so much about Japanese culture. On our bus rides, she shared stories and even taught us some origami. Rumi continually had us laughing and enjoying every minute of the trip, and everyone in our group loved Rumi. All of the sites that we visited were incredible, and we even had a good amount of free time. Thank you so much Rumi and Affordable World!More Less
The tour with Affordable World was amazing!! You travel to a lot of places in a short amount of time but the whole tour was well organized. The hotels were nice and comfortable. Only thing is the hotel in Tokyo was a bit far from Shinjuku and Shibuya... The best part of the trip was our tour guide Rumi-san. She was very knowledgeable, helpful and funny. She went out of her way to give us an authentic piece of Japanese culture. I cannot wait to back now. Thanks Affordable World!!More Less
We have been fortunate enough at a young age to travel across the world. We have stayed in 6 star resorts to a floor in third world countries. I have to admit, Japan was the most interesting and enjoyable places to date. There is so much culture and variety to see. It makes me think, what does America, really have to offer as far as tourism....Hollywood and amusment parks? Affordable World was first class and we made so many wonderfull friend on the trip. 8days or 6 nights can be a bit rushed and the subway in Japan, a bit intimidating, but just do it! If your a foodie...this is a great place to travel. All the staff, especially, Mike, was professional and made the trip a no brainer. Just make sure that you take advantage of your free time! Plan ahead, so much else to see that is not on the tour, like Roponghi, Shabuya, Animee/porn district and of course all the Food Markets like Nishiki and tsujuki...sorry for the spelling errors. Enjoy!More Less
I did this trip with my mother and husband. The trip was well-organized and we packed a lot in. The accommodations were better than I expected and the guides were excellent. The only thing I would have changed would be to change my bullet train ticket to the evening and have extra time in Kyoto since we did the Osaka/Nara tour not giving us enough time to experience Kyoto.More Less
After waiting for decades to return to Japan, I had a super fantastic time. It was everything that I hoped for...and more. Hiro was a knowledgeable, warm and caring guide. Really great person. Komo was energetic, helpful and happy. Mr. Kojima was an expert and considerate driver. He helped me retrieve a bag with my spare camera battery from storage when my other battery ran out of juice mid-day. The hotels were immaculate and comfortable. The breakfasts were half traditional Japanese and half continental, so hit the spot. The itinerary was packed with fun. We had enough free time to go explore Kyoto and Tokyo with our newly found information. Well done Affordable World. Hope I can come back and visit Japan again.More Less
Affordable World's Japan tour was a whirlwind tour that was worth every penny. Our tour guide, Hiro-san, was extremely knowledgeable and friendly, teaching us etiquette for bathing at the onsen in our hotel. I highly recommend booking a Japan tour with Affordable World. I was so impressed that I will surely book other Asia tours through this company.More Less
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