I love the tiny details when planning a trip. This includes looking at different routes, considering alternate forms of transport and figuring out how much it will cost.
When I lived in Japan, Hyperdia was my best friend. This fantastic online transportation database helped me check travel times and routes from my apartment to anywhere in Tokyo using the subway. I also used it to plan shinkansen (bullet train) trips to cross the country and to compare prices and times with airlines for the same journey.
Exact place names are required but spelling sometimes doesn’t match that on the local maps. For example, if you want Ueno Station run by JR in Tokyo, type in Ueno. If you want Ueno Station run by Keisei, type in Keiseiueno (with no spaces). Some place names also do not correspond with logic. Despite these hiccups, the service is remarkably useful.
The website has gone through some changes. One is the name – it’s now HyperDia. I still don’t know what the name means but I can’t stop loving the site! We use it now each time we go back to Japan to price out whether buying the Japan Rail Pass is worth it. Some day we hope to use other passes available in Japan.
If you read and write Japanese, my husband’s favorite planner is on Yahoo Japan.
Do you have a favorite transportation planner for getting around in Japan? Have you tried Hyperdia online or the app?