OFF ISLAND TRAVEL: Taking The Bus (from Narita Airport)


Once you have successfully left Okinawa and arrived wherever you are going, in my case Narita Airport, it’s time to make your way to your final destination. There are a variety of options to get from the airport to your final destination but two of the most popular are via train or by bus. In this post we are going to talk about taking a bus from Narita Airport. 

Finding the bus once arriving at Narita Airport is very simple. After collecting your luggage you will see a variety of signs which lead you to various destinations throughout the airport including the bus ticket counter. Following these signs, and the people, will bring you to the arrival terminal where you will find  various small shops and ticket counters for both trains and buses labeled in English as well as Japanese.

Taking The Bus: Ticket - Tokyo, Japan

When approaching the ticket counter you will see display boards behind the attendants showing destinations and departure times. Like elsewhere in Tokyo the signs will rotate through Japanese and English for your convenience. It may take a moment so being patient is key to ensure you get the destination you are looking for.

Helpful Hint: Researching what bus companies carryout routes to your specific destination prior to your trip is important. This can easily be done through a Google search or through the airport’s website. It is also important to note that buses do not continue to run throughout the evening and some flights may come in at a time making you unable to take a bus to your destination. 

Purchasing a ticket from the attendants is relatively easy. In my experience they have always had at least enough English language ability to assist even non-Japanese speakers or had someone available to assist at an arm’s reach. You will inform them where you want to go and how many are in your party. Once you have paid you will be given a ticket which again, as I mentioned before, has English and Japanese making it easy to comprehend. The ticket will inform you of the bus stop number, departure time and destination. The attendant will also clearly mark all of the important details and direct you to the exit nearest your bus stop.

Taking The Bus: Stop Number 11 - Tokyo, Japan

Once you have reached your bus stop you can take a breath because the biggest hurtle has been cleared. Now you simply have to wait for and board the appropriate bus. Although this might seem intimidating it’s actually quite easy thanks to the help of the bus staff. They will not only check your tickets and answer your questions but they will also check your baggage and give you ticket stubs so that you can collect it once reaching your destination.

At this point your baggage is checked, loaded, you’re on the bus and you’re riding alone excited to get to your final destination. The next stop is wherever you are going. Once arriving there simply get off the bus and show the driver or attendant at the destination your luggage ticket stub. You will be handed your luggage and you’re on your way!

Taking the bus is a great way to get to your destination without having to tackle the train system with your luggage (or even little kiddles). However, it is important to understand that not all buses run to all destinations at all times. For example the bus to the Tokyo Disney Resort ends service out of Narita Airport at 5PM on weekdays making the train the only option for those with flights coming in after that time. Researching these specific details can be done ahead of time so that confusion can be prevented.

Have you ever taken the bus out of an airport in Japan? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

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One thought on “OFF ISLAND TRAVEL: Taking The Bus (from Narita Airport)

  1. I used to take the bus, but I would still have to get to the station… with my luggage. that was a pain. So now, I.. (we) just load up the car, and drive to the ‘Departures’ gate, give the keys to the off-site parking guys (who you make an appointment with before on the internet, phone) and walk in to the check-in counter. When we come home, we call the parking guys after we clear immigration, and they drop off our car at the same place!
    Best system ever!

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