Aug 22, 2010

How to take a bus in Japan?

Had my first bus ride in Japan alone yesterday as I explored another route to work. :)

Friends who know me, would probably remember that I tend to be quite hopeless at directions at times. :P More often than not, I was following blindly behind my friends as we commute from one place to another, either at home or overseas.

Hence, here's a documentation on how to board a bus in Japan, for all newbies like me.

1. Different from Singapore, passengers board from the back door instead.

2. At the door, collect a ticket from the "整理券" (seriken) machine. The number on the ticket indicates which bus stop you have boarded.

3. The next stop will be announced and/or shown on the LCD screen at the front of the bus (near the bus driver). Once you hear your stop announced, press the stop button near your seat.

4. To find out how much you need to pay for your bus fare, look at the LCD screen, and look for your number as indicated on your ticket. For example, my ticket is numbered 14, according to the board, it costs 100 yen.

5. Alight from the front door. Drop your ticket and your bus fare (in exact change) in the box-like machine next to the bus driver.

If you do not have enough change, you can change your dollar note to coins at the box-like machine near the front door. By the way, you need to pay the exact amount, as no change will be given.

Hope you find that useful! For some bus companies, you can buy a card, which you can top up and tap for each ride. For eg, Nicepass for Entetsu services; Suica for train services.