Happiness in Japan! (pt 1)

Aka Planning a trip sometimes makes me feel happy.

I’ve always wanted to go to Japan. My middle school had a summer exchange program that captured my heart. I studied hard: practiced some Japanese, read every book I could find in the bookstore, and often walked home in the rain after the school meetings. I however got rejected because of poor math grades.

Now that I’m an adult, my wanderlust has festered and my dream of going to Japan has come back with a vengeance! This is actually one of the pre-baby bucket list items that my husband agreed to.

So here, I will go through my trials of planning a trip to Japan. A lot goes into it, and we’ve had about a year to prepare. I’m sure more changes will come, but I wanted to share my journey and hard work about our preparations.

  1. First part of planning any trip, is deciding where to go. I want to visit all 7 continents in my lifetime, but Japan has been an obsession. We’ve debated fora  while where to go to… Germany for castles? France for some romance? Peru for hiking? Japan for a honeymoon?
  2. Now for budgeting! This is a rough budget, and I’m still playing around with numbers. These numbers give my husband as a target to work towards. We will both be pulling in overtime at work and using our bonus to help fund our trip! japan 1

Here is an example of my budget. The purple lists miscellaneous expenses. Passports are obviously a must, and airport parking or Uber needs to also be considered.

The Orange is travel expenses. We are flying “Open Jaw,” which means we will fly into Tokyo, and out of Osaka. I estimated the plane tickets based off of two people using an airline aggregate site. There are a few, and I found the best deals using  www.momondo.com.

Green is for accommodations. I looked at hotels using booking and agoda. You can reserve rooms using those sites without a down payment in some cases which is awesome!  We could stay at a hostel, but since this is for our honeymoon, I wanted privacy.

Blue was for fun money and things to do while in Japan. I used a site called Voyagin to look up tours in Tokyo, Fuji, and Osaka. I really liked their site, they had such a variety of things to do!

3. Get your paperwork together. Check any travel warnings on the US State department website (http://www.state.gov/travel/) . Check and see if you need vaccinations or any visas to visit. Luckily as an American citizen, I just need a passport. Everything else is in order for me!

Phew… this post was longer then I though… I’ll have to continue later on! I’ll post some helpful links below and continue with trip planning and hotels on another post.

Here are the site I found useful while planning this part of my trip:



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