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NRT - Grand Hyatt Tokyo (Best option on a Friday at 5pm?)

Ontario, Canada
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NRT - Grand Hyatt Tokyo (Best option on a Friday at 5pm?)

I know the question of best transportation from NRT to Tokyo has been asked many times, and I am sorry to make yet another post.

I have read as much as I can, including the FAQ section, but I do still have some questions that I would really appreciate asking.

We are a family of three flying YYZ-NRT on AC1 arriving Friday Aug 19 at 3:50 pm.

We are staying at the Grand Hyatt Tokyo (Roppongi)

We will have one large suitcase each along with our carry-on luggage.

From what I have been able to understand the easiest option would probably be to take the Airport Limousine Bus from NRT Terminal 1, direct to the hotel.

My concern with this option is possible traffic. I know that in Toronto Friday at 4pm would be the “worst” time to try and drive from the airport to downtown.

Would this also be an issue in Tokyo? I don’t love the thought of a 1.5 hr bus ride turning into 3 or 4 hours due to rush hour traffic, after a 13 hr flight.

Are there any other realistic options without spending a fortune on a taxi that would most likely be caught in the same traffic anyhow?

I have looked at the NEX, and Skyliner, but not being familiar with Tokyo at all, I am a little confused on how easy these options would be to get to the Grand Hyatt.

Keep in mind we do NOT speak, or read Japanese, and have never been to Tokyo before.

So first off, are we likely to have a major traffic delay on a Friday afternoon around 5pm when we are going to be leaving the Airport?

If so, should we consider a train or just use the bus regardless.

If a train is recommended, detailed instructions would be greatly appreciated.

All comments or suggestions welcome.

Tokyo, Japan
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1. Re: NRT - Grand Hyatt Tokyo (Best option on a Friday at 5pm?)

My recommendation would be to just go with the bus. Traffic could be heavy, but it won't take 3 hours.

The bus company uses highway information to guide their busses around the jams as much as possible, so usually its not too bad.

NEX is an option, but you will have a similar problem - it won't be pleasant schlepping your bags from the B3 level of Tokyo Station up to a taxi at the peak of rush hour.

Boston...
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2. Re: NRT - Grand Hyatt Tokyo (Best option on a Friday at 5pm?)

I have taken the trip from Narita to the Grand Hyatt many times.

The best way, by far in my opinion, is the Narita Express to Shinagawa station, then a taxi to the hotel. The taxi ride is about 10-12 minutes, costs about 1600-2000 yen, and goes through the very pleasant Azabu Juban neighborhood. At Shinagawa station, there are escalators from the Narita Express platform to the main level, and then another very short escalator from the main station level to the taxi area. There are always plenty of cabs available.

In addition to traffic, another problem I have with the bus is that it runs only once/hour. NEx runs twice/hour most of the day when planes arrive/depart.

Don

Owner ... Don Topaz Travel

Ontario, Canada
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3. Re: NRT - Grand Hyatt Tokyo (Best option on a Friday at 5pm?)

Wow, now I am really confused... LOL

I appreciate both opinions, if I were alone I think I would definately take the NEX.

However my wife keeps telling me she wants the "easiest" option, and doesn't relish arriving in a busy train station at rush hour not being able to speak a word of Japanese. Also worries about finding a cab big enough for three and all our luggage.

I am leaning toward the bus, unless there is a real disadvantage like huge traffic issues etc...

I would still welcome any other comments, and thank you to all who have replied.

Pulau Ubin...
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4. Re: NRT - Grand Hyatt Tokyo (Best option on a Friday at 5pm?)

Not exactly a similar scenario, but I have taken the bus during the morning peak hour rush before from NRT to ANA InterCon (near the Grand Hyatt), and the journey was pretty quick, yes there was traffic, but it wasnt bad and not moving. I'll go with the bus for the easy option, as the pick up is right outside arrival hall, no luggages to worry as the luggage attendents will tag it for you and it's a direct drop off at the hotel.

Edited: 2:45 pm, August 08, 2011
Boston...
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5. Re: NRT - Grand Hyatt Tokyo (Best option on a Friday at 5pm?)

No single solution is right for everybody. It's true that the bus is easier, and I also find the NEx + taxi to be extremely easy. (Shinagawa station is not nearly as busy or large as Tokyo station, and the taxi stand is well-marked and not far from the Narita Express track.) On a scale of 1 to 10 (10 is easiet), the bus is a 9 and the NEx + taxi is 8.5, but obviously people need to do what they're most comfortable with.

If you go with the NEx + taxi route, it's a good idea to have the name and address of the hotel written down before you go. An even better idea is having the name and address in Japanese -- write to the Hyatt at tokyo.grand@hyatt.com and they'll send you exactly that in a PDF that you can print out.

Don

Tokyo and California
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for Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka, Shinjuku, Japan
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6. Re: NRT - Grand Hyatt Tokyo (Best option on a Friday at 5pm?)

I'd give the bus a 9 and the NEX + Taxi a 7 on Don's scale above.

I recommend taking the limobus over the NEX as well if you want the easiest way. Traffic would be very heavy on a Friday afternoon, so don't expect to get to Roppongi in 2 hours.

You might be able to catch the 16:35 bus. If you miss it, I recommend taking the NEX at 16:45 or 17:16 rather than waiting for the next bus at 17:35:

limousinebus.co.jp/en/…59

jreast.co.jp/railway/pdf/nex_timetable.pdf

If you take the NEX, get off at Tokyo Station and head to Marunouchi Exit. You'll find a taxi stand right outside.

The NEX trains stop at Tokyo Station before Shinagawa. Roppongi is closer from Tokyo Station than from Shinagawa, so it makes more sense to get a taxi from Tokyo Station.

Signs in train stations are all bilingual. No need to worry about not speaking/reading Japanese.

Hong Kong, China
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7. Re: NRT - Grand Hyatt Tokyo (Best option on a Friday at 5pm?)

Friday rush hour traffic could mean 2+ hours on the limobus. It depends on whether you are mentally prepared for being stuck in traffic.

I would personally opt for NEX + taxi from Tokyo station. It shouldn't be very difficult but you do have to move your luggage from the platform to the taxi ranks.

Boston...
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8. Re: NRT - Grand Hyatt Tokyo (Best option on a Friday at 5pm?)

With all respect, Shibuyakko-san, I have found the taxi ride to the Grand Hyatt from Shinagawa to be both faster and less expensive than from Tokyo station. (It is true, of course, that it takes 15-20 minutes longer to reach Shinagawa on the NEx.)

Don

Hong Kong, China
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9. Re: NRT - Grand Hyatt Tokyo (Best option on a Friday at 5pm?)

Easiest? I think Airport Limousine bus. You just get on, luggage in the bus' luggage compartment, you dont see it again until reaching your hotel. So, you just sit and maybe sleep. Easy.

NEX: you can predict your time of arrival. Faster. Not easiest, because you do have to take care of your luggage to make it possible.

However, you will definitely be faced with traffic with the bus because last time I went at 4:30 to.$Shinjuku from Narita, it took 3 hours to reach.

So, I never take the airport limo bus anymore.

So, you just have to weigh it out:

Option 1, Easy but longer in minutes or option 2,

Not as easy, but less minutes.

I personally would take the NEX if adults only, and not excessive amount of large luggage.

I like to arrive to hotel asap.

Thanks!

Tokyo, SanDiego
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10. Re: NRT - Grand Hyatt Tokyo (Best option on a Friday at 5pm?)

Re taxi from Tokyo vs Shinagawa: If you ask 100 Tokyo locals, 99 of us would tell you to take a taxi from Tokyo. That's because the NEX fare to Tokyo is cheaper than the fare to Shinagawa. In addition, you'll definitely get to the G Hyatt sooner if you take a taxi from Tokyo.

Taxi fares to G Hyatt should be about the same from Tokyo or Shinagawa.