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Home » Culture » Getting Around Japan Part 3: Public Transportation

Getting Around Japan Part 3: Public Transportation

16th October, 2014 I by Translation Excellence

In Part 2, we took a look at one of the main forms of Japanese public transportation: trains. This time, we’ll examine another type of Japanese public transportation available and the option of using bicycles as an alternative.

Similar to trains, buses are a widely used form of transportation. Buses service both local stops and longer trips through highway buses. Highway buses generally take longer than traveling by shinkansen or airplane because of traffic, but are a good option for travelers on a budget.

Just as Japanese trains run precisely on time in Japan, so do the buses. Like the trains, a timetable of arrival times is easily available at stations or online. This allows Japanese people to plan their days without worrying about unreliable transportation.

Bicycles

Even with the wide variety of public transportation options available, many Japanese choose to ride bicycles. This can work in conjunction with other forms of transportation. For example, train stations provide parking stations for bicycles. This makes it convenient to ride your bicycle to the nearest train station and hop on a train for even quicker transportation.

Many people ride their bicycles in Japan but are unaware of the associated bicycle laws. Bicyclists are supposed to stay on the street except at night, but these rules are not generally enforced. As a result, many bicyclists ride wherever there is available space on Japan’s crowded streets. If you are looking to supplement your public transportation options available or avoid the jammed-packed train cars during rush hour, picking up a cheap bicycle is a good option. The location you are trying to reach is most likely not that far because of the dense nature of Japanese cities. You will not have to worry about a long or strenuous bicycle ride.

Now that we’ve covered the most common ways to get around Japan, which would you use and why? We’d love to read your thoughts in the comments!

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