Travelfilter: How to get the cheapest flight from Vancouver - Tokyo?
May 22, 2013 3:02 PM   Subscribe

I've wanted to go to Tokyo all my life, and have a few weeks off soon. I've been looking for flights and the cheapest I can find are $1450 all in... but I suspect if I the trip was broken up a bit by not flying there directly, it'd be a lot cheaper. Are there any resources you know of to help with this/have you done this before/do you know a good route that would shave off the $$$? Time isn't overly important as I have three weeks between jobs for exploring. But I don't want to be paying this off till next year. Help!
posted by abbagoochie to Travel & Transportation around Tokyo, Japan (5 answers total)
I did a search and I found flights for 1200-1300ish. Have you tried Kayak?

Also, it's cheaper to fly from the States usually, even if you factor in the cost of a bus ticket. If you do end up flying from Seattle, check Priceline, name your price. It can usually shave off a few hundred bucks.
posted by cyml at 3:13 PM on May 22, 2013 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I travel to Japan annually (in fact, I am purchasing this year's tickets this week) so I consider myself pretty familiar with the going prices for tickets.

The prices you are seeing are accurate. You are going to pay about $1300 US for a Vancouver-Tokyo flight. Given the fact that there really isn't any place to stop between Vancouver and Japan absent a water landing, you cannot "break up" the flight. I suppose you could fly an hour south to Seattle but that really wouldn't make any sense just to save $50-100 on the airfare.

You are also going to want a few hundred thousand yen for food, lodging, transport, and entertainment once you are there. Luckily the yen has weakened quite a bit so the exchange rate is the best it has been in several years. Right now it is 100 yen to the Canadian dollar.

I just might be in Tokyo when you are. I would be happy to meet up if our schedules permit and you are so inclined.
posted by Tanizaki at 3:14 PM on May 22, 2013 [2 favorites]

Are you willing/able to go from Seattle? I don't know if it'll make a difference, but if you can fly out of Seattle, it might be worth checking. (Just looked. Kayak is showing flights from around US$1050 out of Seattle in June/July. On Air Canda. Via Vancouver. But if it costs less than $400 to get to/from Seattle...)
posted by hoyland at 3:14 PM on May 22, 2013 [1 favorite]

I once flew out of Seattle to save a few hundred dollars but my bus to the airport was delayed at the border for 4.5 hours and I missed my flight. And I even took the bus two hours earlier than the bus company recommended. That was expensive to fix. I'm not sure if travel insurance would help in such a scenario but it would absolutely be worth looking into.
posted by carolr at 3:58 PM on May 22, 2013

The cheapest flights from Vancouver-Japan are probably going to be from the travel agency which is inside the Konbiniya store on Robson street. It's a japanese language travel agency for Japanese expats, they have a whiteboard on the wall written in Japanese with the prices for one-way or roundtrip tickets to all major cities in Japan. Go into Konbiniya and head straight to the back of the store on the left side.
posted by thewalrus at 7:09 AM on May 23, 2013

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