One of my favourite things about living in Japan is the opportunity to travel not only to so many different areas within Japan, but also to neighboring countries around Japan. There are so many modes of transportation for you to choose from, you can’t go wrong either way. Read What’s the Best Way to Travel in Japan? If you’re debating whether or not to take a plane, train, or shinkansen.
If you do decide to take a plane, check out these awesome budget airlines for your next trip:
1. PEACH AIRLINES
Peach takes the cake for one of my favourite budget airlines in Japan. I’ve taken Peach a numerous amount of times, and would recommend it to anyone who wants a wallet-friendly way to travel throughout Japan.
One of the great things about Peach is their campaigns and sales. Although all airlines have campaigns during select times of the year, I find that Peach has them more often. Compared to the other companies, Peach is fairly small and is continuing to grow. Every time a new location is added to their destinations, they often hold a special sale that lasts for awhile or on and off until the seats are filled.
Read my in-depth Review of Peach Airlines here.
⊕ Awesome campaigns and promotions
⊕ Clear, and easy to understand policy – no strings attached (everything is stated)
⊕ In cases of exceptional circumstances such as flight delays or cancellations, you can choose to either refund any unused flight segments made under the same reservation or re-book to a future Peach flight(s) free of charge.
⊕ Group bookings are eligible for a discount
⊖ With a standard peach ticket, only one carry-on will be FREE. (However with a Peach Plus ticket, one check-in baggage + carry-on will be FREE)
⊖ You won’t be able to transfer your ticket to anybody else after purchasing (ex. to a friend, etc.)
⊖ Tickets cannot be exchanged (ticket fare varies according to seat availability, etc.)
2. VANILLA AIR
Vanilla Air is also great for snagging great ticket fare deals. Travelling within Japan can often be pricey with a shinkansen, and even peach who usually charges ¥5000 ($56.00 CA) to go from Tokyo to Osaka is more consistently around ¥4000 ($46.00 CA) with Vanilla Air. There are other places within Japan that you can fly to that are not all available with Peach. In addition, for as little as ¥98,00 (~$100) you can fly to Cebu, Philippines!
⊕ Destinations that are unavailable with Peach (Ex. Cebu, Vietnam, Oshima, etc.)
⊕ Passengers who purchase an Inclusive Fare are able to cancel (with an applied cancel fee) 90 minutes before a domestic flight, and 120 minutes before an international flight.
⊕ You can change flights that have the same segment and the same fare type (chart available on their website)
⊖ When changing flights, a reservation change fee and fare difference will be applied
⊖ Tickets cannot be transferred to a friend or family member
I haven’t had the chance to book a flight with Jetstar yet, but I’m planning on it! Although I’d say Jetstar is a little higher up in terms of airfare price compared to the ones mentioned above, it’s still not too pricey to be considered a full on air carrier (in my opinion). With that being said, I would only consider Jetstar when travelling internationally from Japan. Because Jetstar is an Australian company, they offer flights in areas that are not only around Japan, but also closer to Australia.
⊕ There is a greater variety of destinations that are not only close to Japan, but around Australia (ex. Singapore, Philippines, New Zealand, Indonesia, Fiji, etc.)
⊖ Airfare may be more expensive than other budget airlines
1. AIR ASIA
Air Asia is another airline company I haven’t had the chance to fly with yet. I’ve heard it’s similar to Jetstar, and know many who have used it with no problems. It’s a great airline to use when travelling to areas around Malaysia, since it is a Malaysian company. Similar to Jetstar, it offers other locations to Kuala Lumpur, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, etc.
⊕ Great variety of Southeast Asian countries to travel to
Did I miss any? Which are your favourite budget airlines? Share your good and not so great experiences below!