Japan Day 1 – Arrival at Kansai International Airport (KIX) and Check-in at Hotel

Despite only a 15 day difference from this post and the last… a lot has happened in that gap of time. I must say that it was something which I didn’t expect to happen so soon. If I was born in a different family, I would never be allowed to go on this trip but thankfully, the family is modern and accepting of the events. After this trip, I need to decide what to do with my future…

I booked my tickets with Cebu Pacific last March 2016 for a trip this March 1, 2017-March 9, 2017.

I left my house at 11:05am via Grab. Actually, the Grab I got was 4 stars (which was rare since I usually get 4.5-5 stars) so I was a bit worried. I mean why would this Grab get a 4, right? My flight time was 3:05pm at Terminal 3. I arrived at the airport on 12:10pm which just makes it an hour travel. Paid via debit card and used a promo code for VISA.

As usual, I paid the travel tax first via debit card priced at 1620php. Lady asked whether I checked in already, I said I’ve already web checked-in (I find it extremely pointless if I checked-in, go to travel tax and then return to the check-in counter again).

During my turn at the check-in counter, I handed the lady my booking itinerary and passport. This is the smoothest check-in I had, no questions asked expect if that was my only baggage. I saw some Departure cards at their counter and got one so I can fill it up before I go to immigration.

I went to have lunch and decided to dine at Tendon Akimitsu (the one together with Ramen Nagi) since I haven’t tried the place. (Pretty ironic that I went to eat Japanese food for a flight going to Japan…)

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EBI TEMPURA SET – 440PHP ( 473PHP with 10% Service charge)

After eating, I went to immigration and waived the departure card to the person asking me if I got a departure card and went to fall in line.

The male immigration officer asked me two questions : “When will you come back?” and “Where do you work?”

I answered March 9, 2017 and something along the lines ‘I’m looking for work but decided to take a vacation first’.

After that he was looking to stamp the departure stamp at the first page but was a bit surprised (?) that it’s full so he stamped the next page.

For me, since the Japanese embassy did give me a visa, I don’t see any reason why he shouldn’t let me out for a short vacation.

After that, final X-ray and I waited at my boarding gate. I was pretty much with my phone the whole time so my battery was draining pretty quick. 1 and 30 minutes before boarding I decided to go to National Bookstore (since it is a rare normally priced store) to buy a usb cable (since I saw a SMART and GLOBE charging stations) . My real charger was at my check-in luggage but my phone’s port have charging problems so my purchases weren’t even used.

I decided to stand-by by the gate and wait for boarding.

The plane ride was pretty smooth and I didn’t even expect that they would be giving out 1000 Get go points that day. When I heard the prize, I wanted to get all the vouchers but of course I can’t be greedy.

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First time to have a whole aisle for myself!

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Luckily rode on March 1, 2017 and they were giving away 1000 points. Unfortunately, the points still hasn’t been credited to my account. Hopefully, it’s not false advertisement.

Arrival to Japan was pretty smooth. It was the first time I passed by immigration where they have a lot of specialized machine for pictures and fingerprints. Pretty amazed since even HKIA is not like that.

It’s also the first time where I got questioned by their customs officer. I mean we had a 5 minute talk. It even had a belly inspection. I even thought that she would be inspecting my things so I was going to carry the bag at the table but she was just actually checking the weight. (I know I shouldn’t be surprised since there was a customs form given on the plane).

Since I had an evening arrival and had no idea how to go to my hotel. I went around the arrivals area for a few minutes. There were vending machines for prepaid sim card but I didn’t purchase one since it was expensive and I wasn’t sure if my Xiaomi would work since I read China made phones don’t work with the sim cards.

At NAIA 3, I was looking for ways to get to my hotel and since I wasn’t able to get Klook’s deals for this trip, the easiest and fastest way to go to Shin-Imamiya was HARUKA + ICOCA promo. But it didn’t list where exactly to buy?

I decided to go to where the train is since there was a high probability that the ticket is there.

I also did look at the Kansai Tourist desk in the arrival hall but felt that I didn’t need anything there so I left. They were selling various passes which I didn’t have a lot of time to look at. I also saw Airport bus but I didn’t have enough information about it so I still went with the HARUKA ticket.

After going out the airport, it was so damn COLD. COLD, as in COLD but in a way, comforting. Coming from a tropical country, it’s been a long time since I’ve experience a weather like this so I really wanted to go all out and not wear a jacket but I couldn’t stand it so I opened my luggage and took out my jacket. To be honest, I wasn’t prepared for the weather. The winter wear I brought in Osaka was a jacket which can heat you up in a 22 degree Celsius environment and not in a less than 10 degree Celsius. I also brought a wooled cap which somewhat protected my head from the cold. I loved the icy feeling that was passing thru my face.

I found the ticket vending machine and was amazed with the map on top of it. But I didn’t have the time to look at it since rushing to the hotel and cold weather. Around the same time I saw the HARUKA+ICOCA stall so I decided to line up there. I got the HARUKA roundtrip and ICOCA with a 1500yen balance for 4200yen.

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HARUKA ticket

I went to the train gates and luckily the HARUKA train hasn’t departed yet. It was a smooth ride and the conductor goes around to check if you have a ticket. The only thing I didn’t like at the train was the after smell of smoking. I went down to Tennouji and transferred to Shin-Imamiya.

Following my printed map, a foreigner (I think?), guided me to where my hotel was. I was actually in the correct street but I thought it was at the next.

I arrived around 10:30 pm (UTC +9) and checked-in. Paid 18,500 yen as what’s written in my booking.com itinerary. There were some reminders (paper note was also given) but I didn’t understand the first one and I’m still wondering what’s it about.

After placing my luggage, I decided to head to Family Mart for a quick evening snack. I bought Gyoza and a 2L bottled water.

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Family Mart’s Gyoza- 260 yen

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Bottled Water – 98 yen

And that ends my Day 1.

Personal 52 week Money Challenge (2017 Quarter 1)

Hello,

Are you also doing this challenge?

This challenge was popularize 1-2 years ago. It’s prime goal is to teach people the discipline in saving. For some, the amount save would be their extra 13th month pay, savings for a specific want, and for others, instilling the art of discipline. For me, it’s either for paying some debts or adding to my investment. I’m really dying to add some funds to my investment but with no stable income. How, right?

I’m doing the 30php increment and I’m currently on the 6th week of this challenge and it has been alright. Still bearable. 

Why I’m doing this? For the thrill I guess. With a fixed amount, it’s easier. With a guide, you can actually see your progress and you feel motivated. Every week, I place the written amount in my coin bank. If I missed one, I can just go back to it. HIGHLIGHT means it’s a DONE week.

When I originally wrote this entry I was at my 6th week but right now I’m at my 12th week and I’m actually feeling the difficulty of the challenge because my sideline is not generating enough revenue. I have no choice but to just catch up in the future but I’m confident I’ll be able to finish all 52 weeks despite not strictly following the schedule originally planned for this challenge