SMART TRAVELLER GETTING FROM TOKYO AIRPORT TO THE CITY
The best transport options
There are two primary airports serving the Japanese capital. Narita International airport (NRT) is the main international airport, located 60km east of the city centre. The much-closer Haneda International airport (HND), roughly 20km from the city centre, is the primary domestic hub, but also caters for international flights.
Here’s an overview of the many transport options from both airports to the city centre, and how to connect between the two airports.
NARITA→CITY CENTRE RAIL Skyliner (Keisei Electric Railway)
This is the fastest option, reaching Nippori station in the city centre in 36 minutes, or Ueno in 41 minutes. Trains run regularly from 7.26am until 10.30pm, departing from the basement floor of Terminal 1 and 2. A one-way ticket costs ¥2,470/£16.70 (keisei.co.jp).
The N’EX will deliver travellers to Tokyo station in 53 minutes. Services from 9.15am to 9.44pm are direct, while morning trains from 7.44am until 8.50am have four additional stops before reaching Tokyo station. Passengers can also go on to Ofuna, Takao and Ikebukuro in a further 30 minutes. One-way tickets cost ¥3,020/£20.44 (jreast.co.jp).
BUSES Tokyo Shuttle
The quickest bus option takes around 60 minutes to reach Tokyo station (depending on traffic), operating every 20 minutes from 5.55am until 11.10pm. Boarding points for the respective terminals are as follows: T1 bus stop 31; T2 bus stop 2 or 19; T3 bus stop 2. One-way tickets cost ¥1,000/£6.76 or ¥900/£6.09 for advance purchase online (keiseibus.co.jp).
The Access Narita
This service also takes around an hour to travel from Narita airport to Tokyo and Ginza stations, with buses running from 7.25am until 9.05pm. Conveniently, you can purchase a ticket on board for ¥1,000/ £6.76 or at the bus ticketing counter at T3. Boarding points are the same as those for the Tokyo Shuttle (accessnarita.jp).
Taking a taxi is a much more expensive option. A fixed fare applies to passengers who choose to travel via expressway, starting at ¥16,000/£108 from Zone A destinations to Zone F at ¥26,500/£179 – regardless of traffic. Non-expressway routes are subject to the meter, which can run to £230. An additional surcharge is added for late-night and early-morning travel or routes via the Aqua-Line.
HANEDA→CITYCENTRE RAIL Keikyu Line
The fastest train to Shinagawa station in the city is the Airport Limited Express, which takes 11 minutes with a ticket price of ¥410/£2.78, before going on to connect with other main metro lines in the city. Boarding commences from platform B2 and services run from 5.26am until 2.02am (haneda-tokyo-access.com).
The monorail travels from Haneda to Hamamatsucho in 13 minutes, where you can change to the Yamanote Line to reach other destinations in the city. Tickets cost ¥500/£3.38. The monorail runs from 5.17am until 12.10am and the boarding point is located on the third f loor of the departure area (tokyo-monorail.co.jp).
A range of different bus companies – such as Airport Transport Service Co Ltd and Haneda Keikyu Bus Co Ltd – offer routes to various points in the city centre. Operation times vary, with late-night bus services also available. Tickets can be purchased on the bus, at the sales counters or at ticket machines. Prices vary: for example the Keikyu Bus costs ¥1,030/£6.97 for a one-way, one-hour journey to Shibuya; while the Airport Limousine to Shinjuku costs ¥1,230/£8.33. All bus departure points are located on the first floor of the airport.
Like Narita, a fixed fare applies to Haneda passengers. The fare is charged according to the final destination’s region: journeys to Edogawa-ku cost ¥7,000/£47.40, while journeys to Mitaka-shi cost ¥10,600/£71.83.
There are two convenient options to travel between the two airports for onward flights.
The approximately 80-minute bus journey costs ¥3,100/£21 (limousinebus.co.jp).
Transferring between airports via train (on the Tokyo Metro and Keisei lines) can take between 90 and 115 minutes, with between one to three changes, and costs from ¥1,760/£11.92.