This being my first trip out of the country, I thought I’d be scared or have a complete culture shock, but to my surprise, it was the total opposite. There are things that I found to be peaceful in Tokyo that would drive me crazy back home. Maybe because of where I was or maybe it was how people in Tokyo dealt with things differently that made it so easy to slip into the daily activities with no problem. Whatever it was, it made me happy to experience it and terribly sad to go.
What I Loved The Most
I loved the peace and quiet that was always there. No matter how busy a restaurant was or how packed the subways were, it was absolutely quiet all of the time. Have you ever been in a place with thousands of people and still felt alone? That’s kind of how it was. I mean of course Randy was there, but just taking in everything in this giant city, it was amazing how alone I could still feel. I loved that. I know that doesn’t sound appealing to everyone. Some people like the bustle and commotion of cities, and that’s great. It was just so surreal all of the time. It completely blew my mind.
What I Learned
I learned that my Steve Madden flats are NOT great walking shoes and that I seriously need to invest in better walking shoes. By Wednesday I was in near tears after just walking for an hour. I was trying to sit every chance I got. When we finally found a drugstore, it was still too late. I was taking 6 Tylenol or more a day, I bought $50 worth of Dr Scholl’s for my shoes, and I still was having the worst time walking. GET GOOD WALKING SHOES! I’m looking into Tieks and cute sneakers right now. I’ll keep you posted!
What I’m Still Curious About
Where do all of the business men actually work? Seriously! All day long we saw men in business suits at restaurants eating, at cafes taking naps, on the subway sleeping, and in stores shopping, but not once did we see anyone walk into a building that looked like they were actually going to work . It just looked like everyone was dressed for work but their job was to just wander the city looking busy. lol Next time we go, we’re going to just follow someone so that I can answer this question for myself.
Are You Interested in Visiting Tokyo? Here Are Some Tips:
- Bring comfortable shoes
- Bring an umbrella
- Get a Pasmo card (when you get there. DO NOT buy it online)
I did a lot of research on whether or not to get the Pasmo card or a JR pass (or both), and after getting our itinerary together, the Pasmo was the best for our money. Pasmo is a refillable card you use for the buses and JR trains. You can even use it at the arcades (which we did on our last day). One of the best things is the card is good for 10 years, so when Randy and I go back, we can still use the same cards. I talked to a friend of mine who had gone to Tokyo about 6 months before us, and she told me she spent about $150 plus another $150 on a bullet train to Kyoto. Since we were only going to be in Tokyo, I figured $100 each would be enough.
What We Spent
Ok the moment of truth. I had a budget of $4000 total (including flights and hotel) Here is what we spent:
Flights: $879 each (Grand Total: $1758)
AirBNB $450 (Yes. I know it is illegal in Tokyo, but $60/night? Um, yes please.)
Baseball Game and Museums: $80
Pasmo: We loaded both cards with 10,000 yen each ($100) and still have about $50 on each card, even after going to the arcade. And we did a lot of travelling around the city. (Grand Total: $200)
Food: We ate A LOT. And given how much money we had left over, we spent roughly $550 on food. Food was relatively cheap everywhere we went, which was awesome. Great food and a low price = one happy me.
Grand Total: $3288
So yay! We came in under budget and decided that the left over money would be spent towards plane tickets for our next trip: CHICAGO! We’re headed there in 2 weeks.
I also spent $40 on a photography class, because let’s face it: my pictures suck! lol
Until next time!