Ever since our son and family’s visit this past Christmas I’ve had Japan on my brain. Like, how soon can we get back there again? Brett and I still plan to go in 2019 to begin our annual three-month’s stay, but neither of us thinks we can, or wants to, go that long without seeing our grandson. And, we just flat-out love being in Tokyo.
There’s no way we can go this year though – we just have too many other things on deck. But in 2017? When YaYu has spring break? We’re thinking this may be doable.
This time we could stay at the New Sanno Hotel, just a 10-minute walk from our son’s condo (without Brett I was ineligible to book a room there, which is why we didn’t stay there last spring). The New Sanno is a 5-star hotel run by the U.S. Navy, and for exclusive use by active duty military and retirees. Staying there would be less than $100/night, taxes and fees included, or around $750 for our entire stay. Even if our son moves before then (they are thinking about relocating this year to another nearby neighborhood) we would still only be a short train or subway ride away from them.
I can most likely find substantial savings on airfare too. I always set a limit for what I am willing to pay, and then search for something lower. If I find it, and I usually do, I grab it without hesitation.
We would plan to stay in the Tokyo area this time, and not buy rail passes, or other more expensive travel items, so our daily expenses would not be as high as they were for the girls and I on last spring’s trip. If there’s one thing Brett and I are very good at, it’s eating cheaply, but well, in Tokyo. We’re not big souvenir shoppers either (nor is YaYu) so won’t have to bake in a lot of extra for that. A budget of $175 – $200 per day for the three of us would be more than adequate to cover daily meals and snacks, transportation expenses and other needs while we’re there.
The first hurdle though will be whether we can get a room at the New Sanno. Reservations open up a year in advance but can sell out quickly, sometimes in just one day. There’s no online booking either; you have to call Japan and speak directly to someone at the hotel. We’ll be on the Mystery Vacation™ when the first day of our possible Japan stay opens up, so we’ll have to call from our mystery location, in the middle of that vacation. IF we can get a room, then we’ll keep going; otherwise we’re either going to have to come up with Plan B or give up going at all (And no, we won’t stay at our son’s even though they always invite us. If it were for a couple of days, maybe, but for nine days the three of us would be too much strain on their household).
So, our fingers are crossed once again. Japan is calling us, and if the stars align we may be able to do a nine-day visit for around $5000. We’ll have to pull together and use all of our savings skills once we get WenYu off to college to make it happen, but I think we can do it.