Translated by Atsuto Fukuda
Tips for Choosing Night Bus: Cheap and Convenient Transportation
Written by Miki Takeshita
We suppose many people use night buses on domestic travel. This time we brought information together to make them more convenient.
Tips for finding a comfortable night bus
- How many seats do they have in a row?
Standard seats(four in a row) are cheaper, but they are less relaxing since they have no space to recline. Buses with two or three seats in a row have better reclining, but are more expensive. Also, seats next to the window should be avoided in winter, as they will be exposed to the cold air outside.
- Is restroom available in the bus?
Buses without restrooms will stop at somewhere to let passengers use them. This might disturb your sleep.
- What company runs the bus?
JR, private railways and other bus companies are slightly expensive. Buses run by tour companies tend to have some advantages on the price or amenity goods such as blankets, so it is better to check them beforehand.
Things to take with you
- A pair of earplugs and an eye mask
The must haves for your good night sleep.
- A mask
To avoid infection since you will be in an enclosed space for a long time.
- A pair of slippers or sandals
Wearing shoes for a long time is more exhausting than you might expect. Bring these to relax your feet.
- Drink, snacks etc.
The bus won't always stop for a rest. Get them ready beforehand.
- A cushion
Sitting in a bus for a long period may cause pain in your neck or waist. It would be better to take them with you for your comfort.
- A disposable pocket warmer (Kairo)
Just what you need in winter for a good sleep.
How to purchase a ticket
- Access websites via internet to reserve a seat.
- Hassha O-rai Net(発車オーライネット) Almost all route could be searched and reserved.
- Kousoku Basu Net(高速バスネット) For JR buses.
Available in Other languages
- Highway Bus Dot Com For Keio Bus and several other companies. English, Korean, Chinese(Simplified and Traditional) are available.
- WILLER EXPRESS Website by a tour company. Japanese, English, traditional Chinese and Korean. Reservations for ferries are also available.
- At-Bus De（Kyushu Bus Network Portal） For buses in Kyushu area. Reservation is available in English, Korean and Chinese(Simplified and Traditional).
- Purchase a ticket based on the reservation information.
Credit cards and convenience store payments are the major methods for the payment. Check the reservation website for details. In most websites, the reservation will be automatically canceled after its payment deadline, so be careful.
Major boarding places
Tokyo Station Yaesu-South Exit Bus Stop
Boarding place for all departing JR buses. Keep in mind that arrival stops are near Nihonbashi Exit.
Shinjuku Station JR Highway Bus Terminal
2 minutes on foot from Yoyogi Station East Exit/8 minutes on foot from Shinjuku Station Shin-Minami(New South) Exit. Allow extra time since it is little distant from the station.
Osaka JR Highway Bus Terminal
Right next to the station. Located near Chuo-Kita(Central-North) Exit in the first floor of the North Gate Building.
Kyoto Station Karasuma-guchi Bus Terminal
Be careful not to get lost since this is also a large station. Check the number of your boarding place beforehand.
Were these information helpful to you? Using a night bus for the first time can be a bewildering experience, so make sure you gather enough information and manage your health to have a safe trip.