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View Full Version : Trip to Japan, best show?



jcarlton
03-15-2009, 02:04 PM
i would like to make a trip to Japan this year and do one of the big kit shows. Any suggestions of which one might be best? Which one to avoid like the plague. For scheduling reasons and the fact that Pop Japan Travel has a tour just before Wonderfest:
http://www.popjapantravel.com/tours/23/Akadot_Tour
Wonderfest looks like a good bet. Unless there is an overwhelming reason not to.

serogane
03-15-2009, 07:24 PM
Wonder Festival, hands down.

You might be able to catch C3Xhobby 09 (08/29-08/30) as well if you

a) go right before Wonder Festival 09 (7/26)
b) don't go on the tour
c) stay for at least a month

You might even hit the next next Treasure Festa if it all works out.

jcarlton
03-15-2009, 08:46 PM
My boss would kill me if i stayed a month unless it was for work. As we have a big design contract for a huge Japanese it might not be as far fetched as I think. But it remains to be seen how things develop and we enough on our table right now on other stuff.

serogane
03-16-2009, 03:17 AM
Then yeah go with Wonder Festival.

I've two friends disappointed with Japan after their first visits, so I'm a little unmotivated to visit at the moment. But to be fair neither stayed longer than 2 weeks.

telemarq
03-16-2009, 06:03 AM
I've two friends disappointed with Japan after their first visits, so I'm a little unmotivated to visit at the moment.

WHAT?! ::yikes

You can't be serious. I can't get enough of that place. Cherry blossoms, ramen, sashimi, anime, music, the people, history...........I could name a million different things. :wub:

Why were they disappointed? Don't let that affect your decision.

BTW, I leave tomorrow. Tokyo International Anime Fair and Treasure Festa are part of my plans. :hubba:

Tsunamidelta
03-16-2009, 04:44 PM
Honestly I wanna go.. just keep planning my measly two weeks of vacation on other things I wanna do to.. at some point going to have to sacrifice.. and just go.

But am I the only one that sort of thinks.. except for like two days.. totally avoid Tokyo and the crowds?

serogane
03-16-2009, 07:27 PM
Why were they disappointed? Don't let that affect your decision.

BTW, I leave tomorrow. Tokyo International Anime Fair and Treasure Festa are part of my plans. :hubba:

Language barrier mostly. They also said that everything's super expensive there, and that the same amount of fun can be had in other Asian countries for less than 1/3 of the price (i.e. food and nightlife in Taiwan).

They didn't completely hate it, it just wasn't what they envisioned it would be like. To quote them:

"Seeing it once is enough."

The finishing blow could be that neither of them are big fans of Japanese contemporary culture (i.e. anime, manga, games, etc.) anymore, so there's not much for them to do there besides sightseeing and spending a lot of money on things they can get for a lot cheaper elsewhere.

The #1 reason to visit for me would be the GK conventions, but that's about it you know? I'm not that interested in paying a few grand just to see some cherry blossoms or to eat some authentic Japanese ramen.

That being said, have fun on your trip. Wish I was attending Treasure Festa.

Shintocowboy
03-16-2009, 08:02 PM
Honestly I wanna go.. just keep planning my measly two weeks of vacation on other things I wanna do to.. at some point going to have to sacrifice.. and just go.

But am I the only one that sort of thinks.. except for like two days.. totally avoid Tokyo and the crowds?

I like to visit Tokyo, but you are right. I stay away as much as I can. I'm more fond of Kyoto or Hiroshima myself. I am bummed though, 3 guys I went to Japan with last time are leaving on Wednesday and aren't coming back until August.

secretasianman
03-16-2009, 08:11 PM
Language barrier mostly. They also said that everything's super expensive there, and that the same amount of fun can be had in other Asian countries for less than 1/3 of the price (i.e. food and nightlife in Taiwan).

They didn't completely hate it, it just wasn't what they envisioned it would be like. To quote them:

"Seeing it once is enough."

The finishing blow could be that neither of them are big fans of Japanese contemporary culture (i.e. anime, manga, games, etc.) anymore, so there's not much for them to do there besides sightseeing and spending a lot of money on things they can get for a lot cheaper elsewhere.

The #1 reason to visit for me would be the GK conventions, but that's about it you know? I'm not that interested in paying a few grand just to see some cherry blossoms or to eat some authentic Japanese ramen.

That being said, have fun on your trip. Wish I was attending Treasure Festa.


So basically.. they weren't otaku, nor were they a normal Japanophile. They were just sightseers :) To an otaku, the 'lure' would be unique to the country, unless you want to visit a recasting 'shop' ;)

Conversely, I'd think if they were into seeing "Japan" the local economy or the small food establishments wouldn't be the reason I'd visit. You can catch up on the quirky things on the internet and to the least, Harajuku culture or Akihabara would be interesting places to go if you wanted to fill your camera memory cards. However if they weren't interested in anything uniquely Japanese, they should have thought it through.

Tsunamidelta
03-16-2009, 09:21 PM
I like to visit Tokyo, but you are right. I stay away as much as I can. I'm more fond of Kyoto or Hiroshima myself. I am bummed though, 3 guys I went to Japan with last time are leaving on Wednesday and aren't coming back until August.

Thats a great long trip.. would be really great to be able to stay that long definately.

Ehh.. maybe if I become somehow wealthy and can quit working forever.. I would do that too..

But, since reality sucks.. I get two weeks if I use all my vacation.

telemarq
03-17-2009, 03:27 AM
Its interesting to hear other opinions of people who aren't obsessive like me. Here are a few reasons why I keep going over. (In no particular order of importance.)

1. NOT just the ramen or sushi, but ALL Japanese food is fantastic. Even the stuff you buy from the street vendors is so good. In four previous trips I have never had a bad or even mediocre meal. The fast food is good. This trip won't be any different.

2. I am a culture sponge. I can see where someone who isn't into that would find the place kinda boring. However, once you understand a little about the culture, you begin to see how it all fits into the bigger picture of everything that goes on.

3. Cherry blossoms are the most unbelievable thing I have ever seen. An interpreter told me a couple of years ago that they like to celebrate things that are not permanent. Everybody and I mean EVERYBODY celebrates the cherry blossoms in some way or another. You have to see them at least once in your life.

4. Language is not that big of a problem in the larger cities. If you learn just a few simple words or phrases, they do appreciate your effort. I speak almost no Japanese, can read even less, and have never had a problem. Having access to a computer on the trip is a huge help. Pre-planning is a must for the language impaired! My forays into the less tourist-y areas away from the cities have not met with any major disasters.

Finally, yes it is expensive. I have lived and worked in a ski resort area for the last 15+ years, so I am used to high prices for everything. I found Japan to be just a bit more expensive than where I'm from, so my opinion is a little skewed in that respect. Its not unbelievably expensive. After one trip, you start to learn how to manage the expenses to return as many times as possible.

Don't just go to say you were there, eat a few good meals and take some pictures. You really have to get over there and experience Japan.

End of hi-jack.

KrokoHunter
03-17-2009, 04:11 AM
I plan a trip to Tokyo in 2010, with a focus on WF'2010 Summer.... and boy I can't wait.

- I want to experience Japan, in it's culture, cuisine, nightlife, people and all the rest
- I want to experience a big Otaku event like WF
- I want to visit the IJN Mikasa and the "Yamato"-museum
- I want to .......

heck .. I've actually asked my girlfriend if we should go wild, and move to Japan for a year or two, 4-5 years from now ....

Yes I'm Japanophile ... and proud of it :D

Shintocowboy
03-17-2009, 07:52 AM
Stay at a Toyoko inn. Inexpensive rooms, internet acess, free meals, and a call anywhere is 100 yen (in an honesty jar). Best business hotel ever, and they are scattered all over the place.

Masa
03-17-2009, 11:56 AM
It's definitely not for everyone, but I think most of the folks who bothered to become members of this forum would have a pretty good time in Japan. Again, like previous posts mentioned, it all depends on where you go and what you want to do. Like anywhere else in the world, it runs the gamut - good, bad, expensive, cheap, wild, safe, rough, friendly, etc. You can't just visit Tokyo and think you've seen everything Japan has to offer.

p.s. I've lived here for thirty years and I hate ramen ;)

secretasianman
03-17-2009, 12:13 PM
p.s. I've lived here for thirty years and I hate ramen ;)

I once met a person who *loved* sticky white rice. Not like it, but seeks it out to enjoy it.

As a person who has eaten white rice every day his entire life before leaving to go to school, i don't understand the lure as it's the equivalent of getting excited over plain, white bread.

Arieanna
03-17-2009, 07:07 PM
I once met a person who *loved* sticky white rice. Not like it, but seeks it out to enjoy it.

As a person who has eaten white rice every day his entire life before leaving to go to school, i don't understand the lure as it's the equivalent of getting excited over plain, white bread.


as far as preferences go for me, sticky rice is better. mmmm :) too bad so few places around here make it that way. its always dry and bleh :sweat:

and as far as bread goes, sometimes a piece of plain white bread is good too. just has to be the denser stuff. not this bread that's all air and ends up dry. :sweat:

would love to visit japan one day myself. be a while before that happens unfortunately.

Tsunamidelta
03-17-2009, 07:28 PM
as far as preferences go for me, sticky rice is better. mmmm :) too bad so few places around here make it that way. its always dry and bleh :sweat:

and as far as bread goes, sometimes a piece of plain white bread is good too. just has to be the denser stuff. not this bread that's all air and ends up dry. :sweat:

would love to visit japan one day myself. be a while before that happens unfortunately.

Totally utterly agree.. on the rice and bread. Italian bread is good.. Wonder bread.. not good.

Just my two cents.

Kumama
04-21-2009, 09:26 AM
Wow, thank you for the tip about the Toyoko Inn! I was staying in a grossly overpriced hotel last time (Intercontinental Tokyo Bay) thanks to the travel agent... next time I was planning on Shinjuku prince, but Toyoko looks even better. Is the room size reasonable? We stayed at a Chisun in Hiroshima where you could barely turn around.

jcarlton
07-24-2009, 10:12 PM
Ok I just bought tickets for a week in Japan. I'm shooting for C3. The Toyoko hotel in Shinagawa looks like a good bet. Cheap rooms(I don't like spending money on stuff I don't need). Planning trips to Nagoya, Ghibli Museum and Ofuna for the Railroad Museum. Might use a tour one day, might not. Will hit Nakano Broadway and Akihabara. Any other suggestions? How do I buy tickets for C3. What time is best to show up if I'm not sure I want a particular kit(early to get ahead in line or late to avoid them altogether). Anybody else going?

Masa
07-24-2009, 11:14 PM
How do I buy tickets for C3. What time is best to show up if I'm not sure I want a particular kit(early to get ahead in line or late to avoid them altogether). Anybody else going?

If you are going to be in Japan before the event, then you can purchase tickets at most major ticket outlets (the same places where you buy concert tickets and the like), Lawson (convenience store chain), Kaiyodo, Volks, Yellow Submarine, and other hobby shops. If you are going to be shopping around at anime and hobby shops beforehand, you will probably come across a shop that is selling pre-event tickets.

Pre-event tickets are 1300 yen, but you can still buy tickets at the door for 1500 yen. Depending on where you purchase your tickets, they sometimes offer special item tickets where you get the entry ticket and some kind of souvenir in a package deal.

If you aren't trying to get "the limited uber-rare event-only item" you should probably get there when the doors open. The weather is very hot and humid and standing around in a line outside in the hot sun isn't that much fun... oh and did I mention it is humid?

I'd like to go, but I'm really busy this time of year :giveup:

jcarlton
07-26-2009, 10:24 PM
How much of the problem is the language barrier? I have found that stores have people who can function with English speaking visitors, especially in Akihabara, but the staff at the show might have a problem with it.

Masa
07-26-2009, 10:47 PM
How much of the problem is the language barrier? I have found that stores have people who can function with English speaking visitors, especially in Akihabara, but the staff at the show might have a problem with it.

Depends on what you want to do. It would be safer to expect that they won't be able to speak fluent English. If you are worried about purchasing items at the event, the international "pointing at the item" gesture usually works just fine. The larger companies would more likely have someone who can speak a bit of English, the smaller individual vendors, even less so. Hard to say for sure - it really runs the gamut.

Shintocowboy
07-26-2009, 10:49 PM
JC, you pay for my ticket out there and back and I'll be your personal interpreter. :hero:

Masa
07-26-2009, 10:50 PM
JC, you pay for my ticket out there and back and I'll be your personal interpreter. :hero:

There you go... problem solved :evillaugh: