Tag Archives: Hokkaido

Kitaca, Sapica or Suica, which one is the most useful transportation card in Sapporo?

When getting public transportations in Japan, IC transportation card is commonly used overall Japanese major cities. An advantage of IC card against single ticket is a simple ticketing system that allow you to keep using same one card as long as top-up on it while single ticket is required to purchase for every single destination. Further more,Read More

What to wear in Hokkaido in winter (Nov to Dec)


When it comes to Nov, the temperature rapidly falls and the lowest is below 10℃ in most areas in Hokkaido until mid Nov. After late Nov, it becomes below 0℃ and even the highest temperature is lower than 5℃. The first snow also falls in late Oct to early Nov every year. If you plan to come to Hokkaido in this period, may be able to see such a fresh snow by chance.
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Welcome! HOKKAIDO, Japan. ~Special promotion for travel to Hokkaido~

I got a big news about special promotion for travel to Hokkaido today!(28 Sep 2018)
As long as you stay in Hokkaido, 70% of accommodation fee per night are deducted from original price up to five nights. (Maximum deduction is JPY 20,000 per night)
When you book a hotel via selected travel agencies, the price offered to you is supposed to be the discounted price, which means you may just pay the offering price without no any application or procedure to utilize this promotion.
This special discount for the accommodation fee is one of “Welcome! HOKKAIDO, Japan.” promotion by the government to support Hokkaido after the earth quake and it starts from 1 Oct 2018*.(* This promotion actually started on 1 Oct, but the main target of this first round is Japanese local tourists. It is said another promotion especially for foreign tourists will start from mid Oct)
I will update here if any new discount plan or valuable information is released.
Now, the season of autumn is my favorite season, so I strongly hope more and more people come in and enjoy Hokkaido!

Detail about the special discount for the accommodation fee named as “Hokkaido Fukko wari” in Japanese released by Japan Tourism Agency
http://www.mlit.go.jp/common/001255942.pdf

 

[Updated below on 22 Nov 2018]
Big discount accommodation plans have been released by HANKYU TRAVEL!
1.Sapporo A Plan
* Price:JPY 8,800 per person for 2 Nights with 2 breakfasts!
* Hotel:Either Monterey Edelhof Sapporo, Hotel Monterey Sapporo or ANA Crown Plaza Hotel Sapporo (These three hotels are all close to JR Sapporo station)
* Period:17 Dec 2018~26 Feb 2019
* Details and booking –>http://traveltojapan.hankyu-travel.com/en/tour/detail_d.php?p_course_id=HF001Z&p_hei=99

2.Sapporo B Plan
* Price:JPY 7,800 per person for 2 Nights with 2 breakfasts!
* Hotel:Either New Otani Inn Sapporo, Hotel Gracery Sapporo or Sapporo Tobu Hotel (These three hotels are located in Sapporo city center)
* Period:17 Dec 2018~26 Feb 2019
* Details and booking –>http://traveltojapan.hankyu-travel.com/en/tour/detail_d.php?p_course_id=HF002Z&p_hei=99

3. Otaru Plan
* Price:JPY 12,000 per person for 2 Nights with 2 breakfasts!
* Hotel:Hotel Sonia Otaru
* Period:17 Dec 2018~26 Feb 2019
* Details and booking –>http://traveltojapan.hankyu-travel.com/en/tour/detail_d.php?p_course_id=HF003Z&p_hei=99

[Updated below on 20 Oct 2018]
I’ve finally found two websites offering the promotion products for Hokkaido accommodations and package tours.
japanican.com: https://www.japanican.com/en/special/campaign/discount/WelcomeHOKKAIDO/index.aspx
JTB Singapore: https://www.jtb.com.sg/hokkaido-fukko-recovery-discount/

Both websites are actually owned by JTB group which is one of the biggest Japanese travel agencies. JTB has a lot of group companies over the world, so now you may be better to directly ask your country’s JTB staff in details. They possibly have helpful information for you.
I believe more travel agencies will join this promotion activity later because Hokkaido travel relevant organization just started to look for travel agencies which will sell the discount travel products for foreign tourists from this week. They haven’t mentioned how many travel agencies would sell the discount products in future, but would not be only one or two agencies like current situation. I continuously check the relevant information.

[Updated below on 4 Oct 2018]
After a few days the promotion started, information revealed about “Hokkaido Fukko wari” especially for foreign tourists are still not clearly announced except above original news.
What I got about “Hokkaido Fukko wari” after 1 Oct is just as follows. I hope it would be somehow useful information for you.

When can we take advantage of the promotion, “Hokkaido Fukko wari”?
The first program was released on 1 Oct, but its major target is Japanese domestic tourists. (Information was announced only in Japanese and the discount rate is same or lower than that for foreign tourists)
The second program will be released in mid Oct and the targets would be both domestic and overseas tourists.

Where should we go to get “Hokkaido Fukko wari” before booking hotel?
Not officially announced about the second program yet.
The first program was released as the discount voucher at Japanese travel agencies website such as
Rakuten: https://travel.rakuten.co.jp/special/prj/201809/?scid=af_pc_etc&sc2id=af_103_1_10000645 ,
Jalan: https://www.jalan.net/discountCoupon/CAM9708503/ and
Rurubu: https://rurubu.travel/theme/area/local18/18a0108/?utm_source=valuecommerce&utm_medium=affiliate.
It is said other travel agencies including China and Korea’s travel companies would also join the second program, but not determined yet.

How can we utilize “Hokkaido Fukko wari” to book hotel?
Not officially announced about the second program yet.
It is just for your reference, but as mentioned above, discount vouchers with limited number were distributed on some travel agencies websites at the first program. Once any traveler get the voucher, she/he needs to choose one in the selected hotels and make reservation in the same website so that the discount amount could be deducted from original hotel fare.
I will update once any news about the second program come in!

 

[Updated below on 1 Oct 2018]
Japanese aviation companies also released some promotions for travel to Hokkaido.

JAL
Ticket of Japan domestic flight to Hokkaido is offered with 88% discount at maximum such as JPY 7,200 for Fukuoka to Sapporo.
Special voucher for flight & hotel package will be also released from 5 Oct according to JAL official website.
You can get more details in its website(In Japanese) https://www.jal.co.jp/dom/special/hokkaido-ouen/

ANA
Some promotion ticket types are released. JPY 6,400 for Tokyo to Sapporo (Original price JPY 9,200 before discount) and JPY 7,900 for Osaka to Sapporo (Original price JPY 9,000 before discount) are one of the cheapest ticket types.
You can check details at ANA’s official website(In Japanese). https://www.ana.co.jp/ja/jp/domestic/promotions/special-info/hokkaido-150/

AIRDO
AIRDO, a Hokkaido based aviation company is also offering special promotion ticket from Tokyo to Sapporo or other cities in Hokkaido. The promotion ticket, “Welcome to HOKKAIDO Fare” is JPY 5,400, which is very cheap compared to the original price of JPY 8,800.

You can check the details at AIRDO official website(In English)
https://www.airdo.jp/en/plan/fare/list/welcome-hokkaido/

* The top page still keeps showing the original price, but you can find current price at the booking page.

What to wear in Hokkaido in autumn (Sep to Oct)

Autumn in Hokkaido is so beautiful and it brings delicious foods like vegetables, fruits and seafood to us. It is also my favorite season.
Getting colder in late Aug, we just feel the beginning of autumn from that time on. It falls snow on the top of mountains in Oct, which almost means the season is changing to Winter. It is commonly said that autumn in Hokkaido is short period almost only two months from Sep to Oct.
Below chart is showing highest and lowest temperature in Sapporo for each month in 2016 provided by official website of Japan Meteorological Agency. <!–more–>
As you may aware, the difference between highest and lowest is very large, and in other words, temperature between day time and morning or night is also very different. It is very important to prepare properly clothes for travel in Hokkaido. Most Japanese domestic tourists always concern what to wear for the travel to Hokkaido, so I guess foreign tourists are much annoying this matter due to luck of enough local information in English….
 

Highest and lowest temperature in Sapporo (2016)

Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun
Highest 4.0 8.3 13.5 21.1 29.7  28.4
Lowest  -10.7  -10.9  -6.9  0.1  1.7  8.4
Month Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Highest 30.5  31.9 31.1  24.7  14.5  11.9
Lowest  13.4  15.1 9.5  0.5  -7.0 -9.2
In Sep, it is better to wear long sleeves rather than short sleeves and also good to wear long pants rather than short pants. If you are lady and like to wear skirt, it is better to wear stockings with skirt. When you have a plan to go north or east Hokkaido, such as Asahikawa, Kushiro or Obihiro, better to bring cardigan, hooded jacket or hooded sweatshirt to keep warm.
In Oct, we seldom see people wearing short sleeves! 😀 Local people usually wear cardigan, hooded jacket or sweatshirt on long sleeves and additionally put light down jacket or light coat on in case it becomes colder around 10°C. Wool scarf or wool gloves may be useful when you go to see night view especially from the mountain top like Mt. Moiwa in Sapporo. It sometimes falls snow in Oct, but we can still walk with sneakers, not necessary winter shoes.
Below is a sample of suitable clothing by temperature. I hope this helps you to judge what to wear in Hokkaido at the time of preparation for your trip.

 

Sample of suitable clothes in Hokkaido

Temperature below Sample of suitable clothes in Hokkaido
25°C  Better to prepare long sleeves to put it on short sleeves  for night
20°C  Wear cotton cardigan or cotton jacket on long sleeves
15°C  Start wearing winter clothes such as wool sweater, wool jacket and down made vest on long sleeves
10°C  Wear cotton made coat or light down coat on wool sweater
8°C  Wear wool made coat or light down coat on wool sweater
5°C  Wear wool made coat or thick down coat on wool sweater. Better to put on wool gloves and wool scarf.
0°C  Wear wool made coat or thick down coat on wool sweater with turtle-necked underwear. Better to put on wool gloves and wool scarf