Sunday, March 17, 2013

How to get from Haneda Airport to Tokyo City

Souvenir shops at Haneda Airport Tokyo Consult Tokyoconsult
Souvenir shops at Haneda Airport
Even though Haneda airport has recently opened up a new terminal for international flights, Narita airport remains the gateway of Japan from the outside world, where majority of the international flights arrive at, especially if you are coming from outside of Asia. If you are fortunate enough to have booked a flight that arrives at Haneda airport, getting into the city would be a lot faster when compared to Narita airport. Be aware of the late night and early morning flights that departs or arrives at Haneda, the flight schedule makes it more difficult to arrange rides to and from the airport. Travelers need to be aware of the public transportation schedule because the metro and bus do not run 24 hours a day.

-To read about how much to budget for your trip to Tokyo, visit Budget: How much does it cost to go to Tokyo?
-To read about how to plan your trip to Tokyo, visit Planning for your trip to Tokyo
-To read about where you can find the best Ramen in Tokyo, visit Best Ramen in Tokyo.

Rental Car
Again, I will reserve this option for more advanced travelers and possibly discuss about this option in my future blog. Reason for reserving this option can be found in “How to get from Narita airport to Tokyo city” post.

Usually costs from 6000 to 8000 yen. The close proximity of Haneda airport to Tokyo makes it a more practical way of getting into the city. It would be much more affordable if you are traveling in groups in which the taxi fare could be shared among the passengers. Time it takes to get into the city might be as short as 20 to 30 minutes, depending on the final destination. Extra charge might apply at night time.
Advantage: Easy; No need to drag luggage across the street; multilingual taxi service available if reserved early with specific company. (Anzen Taxi)
Disadvantage: Traffic; Cost; For multilingual taxi service, one might need to make reservation a few days ahead.

Public transportation
Again, in my opinion, public transportation will always have the best cost/performance value in a land that has the best public transportation system.
Public Transportation

1. Keikyu Airport Line (Take the limited or rapid express train for less stops en route)

The route could take you from Haneda airport to Shinagawa, where it is a big hub for connecting trains such as the Shinkansen bullet train or the Yamanote Tokyo loop train route. The time it takes to the city could be as short as 20 minutes. The cost is under 500 yen to go to Shinagawa station. Be aware of the different Keikyu lines, the regular Keikyu line takes you to Shinagawa station where as the Asakusa line will take you to Asakusa (where the popular temple is located at)
-Advantage: Inexpensive; No traffic; Fast with limited or rapid express train.
-Disadvantage: Not covered by JR Pass. The train runs between 0530 until midnight.

2. Tokyo Monorail Line (take the Express train for less stops en route)

This option will take you to Hamamatsucho, where Tokyo tower will be visible right after you get out of the train station. Hamamatsucho is also a hub for subway transfers or for the transfer to the Yamanote Tokyo loop train route. The ride takes approximately 15 to 20 minutes and it is considered to be the more scenic route for having the railway high above ground. Cost is usually less than 500 yen and package deals with SUICA are also available.
-Advantage: Scenic; Fast with Express train; Inexpensive.
-Disadvantage: Only stops at Hamamatsucho; No reserved seats. The train runs between 0530 until midnight.


Limousine Bus

It is operated by same bus company that operates the route from Narita airport to the city. The luggage will be stored on the bus until the passenger is ready to be dropped off at final destination. Although the drop-off designated hotels are limited, the bus service is not limited for hotel guests of the particular hotels. The time for the bus ride ranges from 30 to 60 minutes depending on the destination and the traffic. The cost is approximately 1200 to 2000 yen. The limousine bus counter should be readily visible right after you go through the customs at the airport. Other bus companies are also available.
-Advantage: No need to drag luggage across the street. Worry-free.
-Disadvantage: Traffic; Could be more time consuming than by train; The bus drops off only at selected hotels and major metropolitan bus stops. (Please review the available hotels/stops on the official website)

There are many options for getting into the city. Different travelers have different preference on choices of transportation. Major factors to be considered should include cost, time, and location of the accommodation/destination.

ADVANTAGE of Haneda HND airport vs. Narita NRT airport
- Much faster to get from the airport into the city.
- Taxi might be an affordable option.

Late arrival to Haneda: How do I get to Tokyo city if my flight arrives after 11pm?
- Consider taking the set-fare taxi.
- or you can consider taking Keihin Kyuko Bus, which takes off around 12 am to 1am.

What would you take to get from JFK airport into NYC?
What would you take to go from London Heathrow airport into central London?

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