Japan community

Sufficient budget?

7 days ago

I have a dream of travelling to Japan and I want to know what is the lowest budget one can survive on there.
The idea is to spend one week in Osaka, one week in Nara (or around) and one week in Kyoto.
My maximum budget (for the whole stay of 3-weeks) is 1200 EUR. Which means approximately 400 EUR for accommodation, 400 EUR for local travel (trains, trams and buses, no taxi) and other expenses (such as entrances, souvenirs, wifi/SIM rental) and 400 EUR for food.
Anyone traveled around Japan on low budget? Is this sufficient?
This is the little overviews of prices in my country recounted to JPY: How much those costs in Japan?
0,5l bottle - 63 JPY
loaf of bread - 120 JPY
one kilo of apples - 145 JPY
coffee (not from main chain stores) - 241 JPY
yogurt - 39 JPY
1 liter of milk - 53 JPY
1 liter of fruit juice - 96 JPY

1 reply
7 days ago


1. Accommodation - If you really do a lot of research, price comparisons, and planning way in advance, you can find some really cheap accommodation in Japan (most of them are at dorm-type rooms in hostels or capsule hotels). From my experience, you can find places for as cheap as JPY 2200/night. So let's say you would stay for about 20 nights, you'd be looking at more or less JPY 44,000 for 3 weeks.

Though I think it is generally more expensive if you stay in Kyoto compared to Osaka/Nara since as a city, it is incredibly touristy.

2. Transportation - This will largely depend on where you plan to go, and how far your destinations are from each other. You might want to avail of a Kansai Pass of some sort if you intend to visit places in the region such as Osaka, Kyoto, Nara, etc.

But as a rough estimate, I'd say JPY 1200/day is good enough, so for 21 days, that would be JPY 25,200. Again, depending on your specific itinerary, this estimate could be much lower or much higher.

3. Food - Same as transportation, food prices in Japan vary greatly. You can get cheap meals for as low as JPY 400 (sometimes even lower) if you go to fast food chains such as Yoshinoya or Sukiya. You can also find good cheap eats around busy streets in hole in the wall restaurants.

Though I understand that you are on a budget, I don't think you should deprive yourself of good food (Japan is full of it!). It's best to mix up your meals with cheap budget eats, and some nicer kind of more expensive meals.

I'd say a budget of JPY 2700/day is good. So for 3 weeks, that would be JPY 56,700.

My total rough estimate would be JPY 125,900. If you convert that, it would be around EUR 1035. So to answer your question, yes, it is possible to survive in Japan for 3 weeks with EUR 1200.

In Japan, these items would roughly cost:

1. 0.5 L of Water - JPY 100-190
2. Loaf of Bread - JPY 300-700
3. 1 Kg of Apples - I'm not sure but fruits are crazy expensive in Japan so if you don't need to eat them, best to just not buy
4. Coffee - JPY 250-700
5. Yogurt - JPY 120-300
6. 1L of Milk - JPY 300-900
7. 1L of Fruit Juice - I'm not quite sure

Hope this helps!