Japan Travel Costs Revealed: Monthly Budget for Extended Stays


I've been living and traveling in Japan for half a year now. Let me break down the approximate monthly costs for you. If you're also planning an extended stay in Japan, I hope this serves as a helpful guide.


Starting with food, if you cook your own meals and they are relatively hearty, a single meal costs about 500 yen. However, I mostly dine out except when I'm in the countryside. For lunch, I usually opt for set meals, which cost around 1,000 yen and include a main dish, side dishes, and soup. In the evening, as most restaurants don't offer set meals, I go to chain fast-food places or affordable restaurants, where the cost is also around 1,000 yen. So, my monthly food expenses total around 60,000 yen. Adding in fruit and snacks, my total monthly food expenditure is about 80,000 yen.

The set meals provided by most restaurants in Tokyo include a main dish, side dishes, and soup


Accommodation is the largest expense. Long-term hotel stays are extremely expensive, and youth hostels aren't suitable for long-term living. I use Airbnb and ADDress (a Japanese housing service, to rent rooms. Monthly Airbnb stays often come with a discount, costing around 70,000 to 80,000 yen. However, these lower-priced Airbnbs are usually in remote locations, so I only used them for a few months after leaving Tokyo. I then switched to ADDress, which offers properties across Japan with a consistent monthly rate. You can purchase days according to your needs, ranging from two days (9,800 yen) to 30 days (100,000 yen), with no expiration date. You can choose your accommodation location and time anywhere in Japan and can change or leave early for free. Their properties are often in urban areas, are of good quality, and have spacious rooms. Although the monthly cost is 100,000 yen, there are no additional utility or internet fees, making it seem quite reasonable.

Airbnb accommodation in Japan

Airbnb accommodation in Japan


For short trips, buses and subways are available with a base fare of at least 200 yen. I usually only travel far on weekends, so this cost is minimal. For long-distance travel, you can choose the Shinkansen or airplanes. Budget airlines are reasonably priced, but be careful not to exceed luggage weight limits, as Japan is strict about this. I was fined 4,000 yen for overweight luggage on my first trip. Generally, monthly transportation costs are around 20,000 yen.

Total Expenses

Combining these expenses, living in Japan for a month costs at least 200,000 yen. This is comparable to the cost of renting a nice apartment in Tokyo and eating out daily. Renting a good apartment in Tokyo can cost 80,000 to 90,000 yen per month, and with utilities and internet, the total expense can reach 120,000 to 130,000 yen. However, living as a traveler allows you to meet new people, enjoy new scenery, and taste various foods every day. Overall, I find the cost-effectiveness of living in Japan very satisfying!