Friday, November 29, 2013

Tips and Tricks : Kansai International Airport

If you're heading or planning for a trip to Japan from KL via AirAsia X and your preferred destination is Osaka, bear in mind as of date of posting (29/11/2013), there are three different timing slot that you may choose from depending on the day you're traveling. (0100-0825, 0815-1540, 1500-2225).

Now, knowing the current season of the destination you are flying is to is not crucial, but informative for itinerary adjustment purposes (if you are self planning your trip). My travel mates and I overlooked the fact that autumn, during the duration of visit has shorter day time (thus, by 5pm it'll be looking like 8pm in KL). Having a jam packed itinerary was challenging but we motivated ourselves to master the art of Shunpo (瞬歩, Flash steps) in order for us to cover as many places that we wanted to see.

File:Kansai International Airport North Terminal.jpg
Photos courtesy of WikiMedia
Our flight on the Monday, 11th of November 2013 was 1500-2225 (approximately 6 hours 25 minutes in the sky). We knew for the fact, excluding time for passport to be processed, we may only leave the airport at 2300 (Tokyo time, GMT +0700), thus we did not consider getting an accommodation in Osaka and opted to stay in the airport for a night. Reading up about Kansai International Airport, we knew that in terms of safety and security, it's a viable place to bunk for a night.

There are airport lounge that you can opt for, a 'private' room may only cost 1000 yen per person for 8 hours. With additional cost, you can find yourself at the comfort of shower as well. We, being stingy backpackers, decided to bunk outside due to the rooms with sofas has already been fully booked, makes no difference to us.

Lawson's wide range of food, too much to choose from :)
Read several blogs around mentioning that the safest place to bunk for the night is at the vicinity near Lawson Convenience Store, Police Station and McDonalds. Though it is true to a certain extent that it is safer, but if you're planning to sleep you would have to ingloriously expose your sleeping styles to quite a number of awake pedestrians. Yes, my sleeping style is no where near fabulous, 9Gag worthy I must say.

Speaking of McDonald's, this was actually my 1st dinner/supper there
Try the 1st floor (In Japan, 1st floor is Ground Floor), nearby the information center. There, if you can't sleep, you can read loads of travel brochures, maps and such. There are ample charging ports near there as well, and need I say, WiFi gratis in the airport.

Tips : Electricity in Japan, the locals are using Type A or Type B plugs, 100V and 50/60 Hz. Just have your regular travel adapter, and you should be fine. 

You can opt to sleep at the nearby benches, without the large company of other night bunkers. The security officers may approach you and ask routine questions, the one that approached us even asked us if we are cold or not - in Japanese. Of course I was tempted to just answer 分かりません,分かりません (I don't know), but I managed to blurt out some incomprehensible Japanese words enough to imply that we're doing just fine. How nice of him. 

We did try to sleep on the hard seaters, but were rudely awaken by a worker who decided to clean the floor around us (for more than 15 minutes, near the same spot) with the loud noise from the floor cleaning machine. Conclusively, we were pretty much sleepless the whole night.

Eyebags but excited to start the day in Japan!
After surviving till 6 a.m. (Japan time), we decided to look for Lawson and buy some convenient breakfast before heading out to Osaka. Had my 1st Onigiri breakfast, not too shabby but kinda not used to having that kinda rice for breakfast. 

We then proceeded to look for WiFi rental and purchased our bus tickets to Osaka. Buses here are VERY punctual, and the bus workers are highly efficient in their duty and polite. Something we might rarely get back home. The bus took us only an hour or so, and till the next post - Osaka!

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