Japan is a beautiful country which is why many people travel to different destinations while they are here in Okinawa. In the past the process of traveling off Okinawa has been challenging and quite expensive. However, in recent years this has changed with the addition of discount airlines and of course various bloggers like myself making it possible to share experiencing and sift out the B.S. that you might get from a travel agent.
In this series of videos and posts we are going to cover each and every topic that you might come across if you are traveling off Okinawa to Mainland Japan (although some of the topics are sure to be valid if traveling to other countries or parts of Okinawa Prefecture as well). Our first topic is probably the most complicated and vital topic to off island travel . . . . . flights.
Believe it of not booking a flight off of Okinawa doesn’t have to be that complicated. Despite what I have been told in past years travel agents are not required and there is no need for Japanese fluency. In fact today there are a number of resources you can use which offer English Language Support to book your flight off Okinawa without stress or worry.
With language out of the way let’s talk about your options for booking a flight out of Okinawa. There are two routes you can go when it comes to booking a flight. The first is to book one of the major airlines (ANA, JAL). Your second option is to use one of the many discount airlines that fly out of Okinawa (Peach, Vanilla Air, Jetstar, Skymark). The choice is ultimately yours, however my suggestion is try to utilize the discount airlines because they will (as the name suggests) have discounted prices.
Choosing a major airline is a great option especially if money is not a concern. You can have your choice of a great deal of flights, destinations and of course you have great quality of service that you would expect from a major carrier. However, if you are watching your wallet and choose to go with a discount airline there is some shopping around that needs to be done.
Even before price the most important thing you need to know is whether or not the airline will fly to your desired destination. Unfortunately not all discount airlines fly to all destinations which can sometimes be troublesome or something might simply require a bit more legwork on your behalf. (We will talk a bit more about that in the “transportation” post coming in the near future.) Of all the discount airlines that are available to fly out of Okinawa Peach, Jetstar and Skymark have the most available destinations. NOTE: At the time I am writing this post Vanilla Air is still in test phases and designated routes have not yet been determined. The second factor is availability or in other words the days on which flights are leaving Okinawa. In my experience the airlines with the most availability are Skymark and Jetstar. Unfortunately Peach does not hold up as far as availability goes. It seems as though they have a few times when they fly out of Okinawa but then there will be weeks when there simply are no flights available. Last but not least it all comes down to price. It’s important to remember that prices for flights will vary depending on when you plan to fly. During peak seasons the cost of flights to pretty much anywhere in the country are going to be much more expensive than off seasons when not as many people travel. Prices may also vary depending on the day of the week. This is the part where it is in your best interest to check back for a few days and see if prices fluctuate. It’s also a good idea to keep an eye on deals that may be happening during the time that you are planning on traveling. From my experience in the past I have had the best luck booking through Jetstar as far as pricing goes. Although Skymark is a close second they simply can’t meet the unbeatable prices that Jetstar offers.
NOTE: If you are interested in learning more about Jetstar Airlines please click HERE.
Ultimately booking a ticket off of Okinawa is super easy and stress free as long as you know where to start. Lucky enough you’ve taken the time to read this post so you have an idea what you’re looking for. As always if you ave any further questions feel free to post them in the comments below and I will do my best to answer them as completely and quickly as possible.