- 3 Feb 2017
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Hi! If there are any Japanese planning their trip to Russia, I'll be happy to answer the questions, give some tips or even meet up! Everyone is welcome!
Four years ago, my wife and I spent two weeks in Russia and Belarus, it was an unforgettable journey. Compared to the crammed and densely-populated Kanto region where we live, everything there appeared huge and spacious: food, trains, roads, museums, we were quite impressed.
Communicating wasn't always easy, as few people spoke English, but everyone we met was quite helpful. One thing we learned fast was to have coins down to your last kopek ready in supermarkets, as the ladies at the cashier were visibly displeased when they had to return change. Acquiring tourist visa was pretty time-consuming; we had to secure flight tickets and hotel reservations prior to our application. One can only hope that these procedures have been loosened.
Most Japanese tourists travel in groups and will never encounter any of these issues. My (Japanese) parents-in-law visited Moscow and St. Petersburg without ever leaving their JTB-provided bubble.
I'd really like to see the Russian Far East one day, Vladivostok is just a 2-hour flight from Haneda.
Acquiring tourist visa was pretty time-consuming; we had to secure flight tickets and hotel reservations prior to our application. One can only hope that these procedures have been loosened.
I've just remembered that it's not necessary to get a guarantee letter from the people you're visiting if your trip is within the particular period of time. Maybe there were a bit more changes, but it mostly affects those who go to Japan for a business trip.I can only hope that some day it becomes possible to get a Japan tourist visa by merely securing flight tickets and hotel reservations. All that guarantor-related red tape makes it almost impossible to travel to Japan independently, without spending extra funds on travel agencies.