“11 Extremely Practical Japan Travel Tips”

“11 Extremely Practical Japan Travel Tips”

by Frances Cha via “CNN

A Japan Rail Pass can save a lot of money, but must be booked outside of Japan.

“(CNN) — Japan isn’t a country to which you just show up and wing it.

For foreigners, the language barrier can be intense, the technology overwhelming and the prices terrifying for just about everything other than instant ramen.

The key is preparation.

We’ve taken care a lot of that for you with the tips below, leaving you to puzzle out the fun stuff, like getting out of a karaoke bar with your dignity intact and figuring out how to ask them to hold the katsuobushi at breakfast.

1. Rent a wireless router

Getting a prepaid SIM card with local calling service is difficult in Japan.

It’s better to rent a handy little wireless router, known as “pocket Wi-Fi” in Asia.

This will allow multiple gadgets — smartphone, laptop, tablet, Kindle — to connect at once with un-throttled, unlimited data.

Local calls are then possible via cheap Internet phone services like Skype.

You can rent and return one of these devices easily at the telecom company counters at most airports.

Booking online before the trip brings the price down even lower.

Global Advanced Communications, for example, offers a deal of ¥5,550 ($53) for a seven-day rental plan if you book before the trip.

They deliver the device to the airport/hotel/office for free the day before your arrival, and include a prepaid envelope for returns.

2. Book a Japan Rail Pass before arrival

Booking the flat-rate foreigner-only Japan Rail Pass, which can be used throughout the extensive JR train network on all four main islands, can save a lot of money for travel by  . . . . .”


Studying abroad could give you an edge in the job market

“Studying abroad could give you an edge in the job market”

by Jareen Imam via CNN


Editor’s note: First lady Michelle Obama took CNN iReporters’ questions about studying abroad. You can see the questions people asked her here.

(CNN) — When Ashley Blackmon sat down for her job interview for a marketing position in New York City, she didn’t start off by talking about the business classes she had taken in college or her experience working at a financial services company.

Instead, she talked about the five months she spent studying and traveling in Spain.

“When I left the interview, I felt amazing,” said Blackmon, 24, who studied at ESEI International Business School in Barcelona the year before she graduated Clark Atlanta University. She landed that marketing analyst job at a large food and beverage company and believes her study-abroad experience was the thing that set her apart. “I learned how to be a better businesswoman, critical thinker and relationship builder in a new culture,” she said.

Ashley Blackmon studied abroad in Spain.
Ashley Blackmon studied abroad in Spain.

Studying abroad isn’t a common experience for most U.S. college students. In fact, only 1% Continue reading

“Going It Alone: 7 Tips for Successful Solo Travel”

“Going It Alone: 7 Tips for Successful Solo Travel”

by Nikki Bayley via “CNN

“To awaken quite alone in a strange town is one of the pleasantest sensations in the world.”

So wrote the great travel writer Freya Stark in her 1932 book “Baghdad Sketches.”

It’s been my motto traveling solo through 30 countries in 21 years.

I took my first trip alone, to Greece, at 22.

I remember walking to the beach, Nirvana’s “Nevermind” blaring in my headphones, and realizing: no one knows where the hell I am.

I’ve been chasing that euphoric feeling ever since. . . . .”



Real Travelers’ Best Tips

“Real Travelers’ Best Tips”

via “CNN

“While Travel + Leisure has its own little black book of hotel tips and air travel tricks, we wanted to take a page out of yours, too.

So T+L teamed up with CNN to solicit advice from seasoned CNN iReporters as part of our Ways to Travel Better campaign—and posed some questions to get them going. What’s your secret to navigating a crowded airport? How about a tip for nabbing a table at the hottest restaurant in town? Do you have a favorite money-saving app or website? . . . .”