i think some people are amazed how i can go to japan again in the same year.
well, as i mentioned in my earlier post, japan is not expensive.
that is, if you know how to get around.
of course, i cant help you if you want to eat expensive fishcake and soba everyday.
anyhow, here is my rough budget for anyone's reference. note that the april trip was cheaper as it was end of winter in hokkaido (hotel saved by 30%) and before the start of golden week holiday. also the airfare package to hokkaido was at a super-discounted price and included a one night stay at hotel. note : such packages can only be purchased in japan itself.
airfare : $625 (northwest airlines)
7-day jr pass : $397 (for train to and from hokkaido and within hokkaido)
accomodation : $735 for 13 nights (per person, and you get your own double bed, private bathroom, etc, at toyoko inn).
transport (mostly subway) around and in tokyo : $80 for 7 days (800 yen per day)
food : this is the tricky part. but of course we're not going to go broke by eating at restaurants every night. you can have quality meals even in convenience stores!
so set aside $480 (2500 yen per day)
toyoko inn provides miso soup and onigiri (rice ball) breakfast and coffee (very important), but i know i will get sian of it soon. however, it is a good way to save money and also good if you are rushing out and want to save time in the morning. i usually eat 2 onigiri and have coffee in 10 mins, then head out to wherever i am going, before selecting a sumptious lunch!
another tip : supermarkets offer low price sushi and bento sets from 6-8pm, and by low i mean really cheap : 500 yen ($6.90) for a 15 piece premium sushi set *can be shared by 2 persons). of course, the freshness and quality also must discount. it will taste like our sakae or genki conveyor belt sushi.
fruits : can eat all the seikai ichi apples at very low price!
total excluding shopping : $2237 for 2 whole weeks of good food, great service, great company!