It's official...ABD is going to Japan!

Discussion in 'Adventures By Disney' started by CaliKris, Feb 11, 2018.

  1. calypso726

    calypso726 Escaping reality one Disney vacation at a time

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    The awesome thing, at least for me, about ABD is that it doesn’t matter what the itinerary is for a country I’ve never been to. Whatever they come up with will be awesome and will include experiences I would have never thought to try. At least that has been my experience over the last 9 ABD trips. The only time the itinerary matters to me is if I have already been to the country. Iceland is a perfect example. The only reason we didn’t book Iceland is because we had already been there and done most of the itinerary highlights. We are going to Japan after the China ABD this May but we aren’t really seeing Japan. We are just going to the parks for a few days. I’m glad ABD is going to Japan next year because I do want to see the country. My priorities this year are to come home after our trip and be able to say I’ve been to every Disney park in the world. Our vacation time did not give us an option do the Japan Disney parks and see the country.
     
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  2. tgeorge

    tgeorge DIS Veteran

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    Completely agree! I'd love to maybe spend a couple days after to go to the parks, but I really hope that it is more focused on the country, rather than the parks (similar to the China itinerary). Japan has long fascinated me and their mix of ultra modern with ancient is definitely something to see, along with so many other beautiful parts of the country. My DH is actually very interested in Japan, so he may decide to go with me, which is the reason I'd wait until 2020 to do this trip. Although, he has no interest in the parks. It is perfectly acceptable to leave him in the hotel for a couple of days, right? He loves photography, so he can go out and take photos while I enjoy the parks :-)

    I know they've always hesitated on Japan due to the price, so we'll see what they come out with. However, Japan is a place I'd pay to go and see, even if it means cutting back on my normal vacation schedule. Some things are worth the sacrifice.
     
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  4. AquaDame

    AquaDame Disney Cruise Line Moderator

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    He will likely run into a lot of like-minded folks! When we went last April there were a lot of photography buffs in the parks taking pictures of things. My favorite was when a group of 3-4 with huge lenses were all gathered around taking pics of a tiny sparrow amongst the cherry blossoms. :)
     
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  5. DCPhotoGal

    DCPhotoGal Photographer and Mom to 2 Princesses

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    What you can do is move your July 2018 deposit to a winter trip, delaying final payment, and then move it again when the Japan trip is announced.
     
  6. kbmartin

    kbmartin DIS Veteran

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    Hi guys! I have never done an Adventures by Disney trip, but I was trying to plan a trip for DH and I to visit Tokyo and the Disney parks in summer 2019 and was getting a bit overwhelmed! I am looking forward to hearing more details when they are released. It would be really nice to have a set itinerary and a tour group to rely on! Since I am a newbie, I have some questions, starting with this: Would this be a cruise? How would we get from, for example, Tokyo to Kyoto (since it mentioned both cities in the initial info release)?
     
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  7. CaliKris

    CaliKris Mouseketeer

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    I think this will be a land based trip. It is very easy and quick to get from Tokyo to Kyoto on a Shinkansen (bullet train). It takes about 2.5 to 3 hours depending on the train you take. A motor coach would take about 6 hours.
     
  8. Cousin Orville

    Cousin Orville Inventor of Air Cooling

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    Let’s all hope for a Shinkansen. A 6 hr coach would not be cool.
     
  9. OhanaCuz

    OhanaCuz I can finally say that I've been on an ABD.

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    The Shinkansen is a lot of fun. It's amazing seeing the landscape fly by so quickly.
     
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  10. AdamEfimoff

    AdamEfimoff DIS Veteran

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  11. WeLoveABD

    WeLoveABD DIS Veteran

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    Maybe Disney is doing the Japan trip now in advance of one of its ships bring based in the Asian market--ABD scouting port adventures...?
     
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  12. Networth

    Networth DIS Veteran

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    I would very surprised if ABD doesn’t use the Shinkansen. The “bullet train” is famous and is considered a must do by most visitors during their time in the land of the rising sun.
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2018
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  13. AquaDame

    AquaDame Disney Cruise Line Moderator

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    And affords amazing views of Fuji on the right hand side (heading to Kyoto - left on the way back) if not blocked by clouds... :D

    Flying is, I think, faster but not as much fun or as scenic. Its about an hour flight time versus 2:15 on the Nozomi Shinkansen. I'm not sure if they would opt for the Hikari which is covered in the rail pass (I would hope not) but that only adds about 15 min to the trip.
     
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  14. danv3

    danv3 Mouseketeer

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    I wonder where this ends up as far as pricing, given that the rumor in the past was that AbD was hesitant to go to Japan because of how expensive it would be. I figure at least $1000 per person per night, which would be the most expensive trip they offer as far as I can tell (they have a few in the upper $900s per person per night).
     
  15. calypso726

    calypso726 Escaping reality one Disney vacation at a time

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    That’s the scary part. Whatever the pricing winds up, I doubt it will ever be less than it is the first year out and with the same itinerary. The timing could not be worse for us in that respect since it will be following two of the more expensive trips we’ve ever done. But, I am sure I will figure out how to make it work.
     
  16. kbmartin

    kbmartin DIS Veteran

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    Why would it be so expensive? I thought Japan was a somewhat affordable trip without Disney... If that is the case, I will have to just go it alone and skip Adventures by Disney. :-(
     
  17. RebelHawk

    RebelHawk 42

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    I've already purchased a Japan, Tokyo and Kyoto travel book and started my research on possible non ABD itineraries. Then when ABD announces the trip details I'll be doing a side by side comparison to see what they are offering vs what we might want to do and the costs. Of course if we do non-ABD then a private trip will be MUCH cheaper for us to book on our own. I have Marriott points and DVC points that will bring our hotel costs down to little to nothing. The real justification for us is that intangible that the guides bring as well as possible destinations that the name Disney might unlock that we can't or would be difficult to do on our own.
     
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  18. sayhello

    sayhello Have Camera, Will Travel

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    I have read that Japan is one of the most expensive countries in the world.

    Sayhello
     
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  19. aggiedog

    aggiedog DIS Veteran

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    We lived in Japan for 2 years, 20 years ago. Back then, a cup of coffee in Tokyo was $8.

    Dds really wanted to go to Japan for their graduation trip last year. Having lived there, I was comfortable doing a modified DIY tour. With 8 of us total, I didn't want total DIY, but after much searching found a company that would make arrangements, give you detailed printed instructions on how to get from the train to the hotel, etc, and arrange for guides/experiences in any given city as we wanted. You could choose economy, moderate, high end, or a combo of those for accommodations.

    I don't remember the exact number of days and the exact final cost that I came up with, but it was enough to make me look elsewhere in the world. Traveling to 3 areas of the country, staying mostly with moderate accommodations, only a few days with full on guides, and moving about the country otherwise on our own, for about 10 days, was going to be something like $8k/person, not including air. For significantly less money, we spent a full week in France (arranged by another semi-DIY company, boutique Paris hotel with a full day's guide the first day, high speed train to Provence, a B&B in Provence with a pool all to ourselves), then a 7 day med cruise in Concierge on MSC.

    Surely they will get deal we couldn't get with a smaller company. Surely the hotels they are choosing will be nicer than the moderate ones I was willing to do. Throw in a full time guide or two. Well, I'm afraid my personal sticker shock may be significant. On the flip side, surely it can't be astronomical, since they want to be able to actually sell it. (a girl can hope...)

    I will say that while I had no desire to see DLP, I would love to see Disney SeaLand in Tokyo.

    I've posted this on the "other companies" thread, but here's the link to the travel company I had wanted to use for Japan. You can get an idea of prices. I think to prepare for a Japan ABD, I'd look under the deluxe tours https://www.insidejapantours.com

    ETA - the trip I had planned on doing was not one of their scheduled trips, but a private one for the 8 of us based on one of their itineraries. Adding a private guide that stayed with us would have been approximately $6,000 more.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2018
  20. wanderlust7

    wanderlust7 DIS Veteran

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    Wow, and I thought the $5 coffee we had at the Sheraton Tokyo Bay was expensive! :laughing:

    I just want to offer an alternative view. I'm sure what you're pricing is closer to an ABD experience.

    For DIY, we didn't find Japan all that expensive and spent $10,000 total (include airfare) for 2 adults, 2 younger kids for 11 nights. We were able to do 1 room everywhere (which isn't always easy to find) - 4 nights in Tokyo (Asakusa area), 2 nights in a ryokan in Nikko, 3 nights at the Sheraton Tokyo Bay, 1 night Tokyo Disneyland Hotel, 1 night MiraCosta. I found eating out cheaper than at home (near San Francisco) and there is no tipping (it's just not in the culture). We had sushi at a casual place and the total was under $60, back home it would be at least $80 for what we got.

    I found the food at TDR cheaper and better quality than at the U.S. parks as well. Example - a set lunch at the Italian restaurant in DisneySea was 2800 yen (about $26 today) - appetizer, entree, dessert, drinks. I would expect to pay closer to $50 at the U.S. parks. Park tickets are a little cheaper as well - 22,400 yen 4 day ticket for adults ($210), compared to what I just paid for 4 day non-Hopper Disneyland at $260 (discounted, before the price increase). The kids 4-11 price difference is even greater ($135 TDR vs $247 DL).

    Of course this will all depend on the exchange rate at the moment.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2018
  21. AquaDame

    AquaDame Disney Cruise Line Moderator

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    Pricing depends tbh. You CAN spend a lot in Japan and Tokyo especially but you certainly don't have to. Japan's pricing hasn't really changed since the 90s which has been a problem.. their CPI has stayed flat or even declined a little since the 90s. Can you imagine if things in the states still cost the same as they did in the 90s..?

    The Disney parks were by far the most expensive part of our trip for lodgings, food and of course the entertainment. That is only because we chose to stay at Miracosta and the Disneyland hotel - I had even made a much cheaper reservation at the Hilton that I ended up cancelling to splurge for onsite, taking our less than $200 per night expense to ~$500 for the DLH and ~$600 for Miracosta. We stayed at Airbnbs in Tokyo that were less than $130 a night for a very nice furnished one bedroom apartments and our hotel in Osaka was either $160 or $180 a night as well and was also very nice (and roomier tbh - apartments in Tokyo can be really small!) I could have chosen to spend $500 or more on a fancy hotel with a view in Tokyo proper also but I really loved having an entire apartment with its random city views that i wouldn't have noticed otherwise. The neighborhoods are so unique in their own ways - little parks and vending machines, gardens and cats strolling around, corner stores and watching salarymen and students rush to work or school in the morning was really nice IMO. We stayed for a few days in Shinjuku and then moved over to another one in Akihabara.

    Food can also be as expensive or cheap as you like. It's like making the choice between going to a sit down & order sushi restaurant on the main drag versus kaiten-zushi around the corner (conveyer belt). There are FANTASTIC kaiten-zushi places, some of them very fun where little trains zip your dish directly to you and jingle when it arrives so you know to grab it but some people just would never go in that kind of place. Some wouldn't get the appeal of going into Lawsons in the morning and grabbing a pastry, egg sandwich or rice ball for breakfast (which are really good - convenience store food there can be delicious and nothing like grabbing a hot dog in the states) rather than going to that fancy french cafe in the station with croissants that are $5. I had an $8 latte in Nara but it was an artisan cup of coffee - you can spend that here in my town of Portland too if you go to the fancy place - or you can just go get a sakura latte at Peets' for $3-4 as you would in the states. Most mornings we just got a 100 yen can of Boss coffee to go with our breakfast.

    Our favorite meals were less than $10 - a huge bowl of slices of grilled BBQ pork on rice was 700 yen (about $7 - they had a massive $9 option that would have killed me), a set meal of fried pork cutlet with a fried egg over nice with miso soup, pickles and tea was $9 and we went to a nice curry place that was sub $10 as well but I don't remember exactly since it was our first night and I was jetlagged. These were better, IMO, than our meal at Magellan's in Disney Sea (I admit that for $50 apiece I was expecting higher caliber food but instead it was kind of weird, room temperature, and I left feeling unsatiated. It was pretty, but not delicious if that makes sense).

    I could go on and on about food in Tokyo, but really all I want to say is you can eat like a king on the cheap without trying. As everywhere, just stay away from the tourist spots - think of your own town, where the tourists go. Why? Can't they eat much better if they just open Yelp? Tokyo is the same.
     

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