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Across Japan on Bike 2019/2/19 22:27
Hey guys

I need some advice about the following:

Me and my friend are planning to do a 2 month cycle across Japan from Aomori to Kagoshima. Neither of us got an own street bike and because there are soooo many regulations regarding flying with a bicycle we thought about renting or buying a bike directly in Aomori.

Now to my questions:

Is there even the possibility to rent a bike for 2 months and pick it up in Aomori and return it in Kagoshima?
If not, do you know a good bikeshop in Aomori that sells used bikes or have any other advice?

Thank you for your help in advance.

Kind regards
by Daniel (guest)  

Re: Across Japan on Bike 2019/2/21 00:14
I did a 2 months cycling trip through Japan about 1,5 years ago. You might find something useful on my blog, eg planning section:


To your questions :
I am pretty sure that renting a bicycle in Aomori and giving it back in Kyushu is not a possibility. You could potentially rent a bicycle eg at a giant shop of Shimanami Kaido or some other destinations (there is one not too far from Narita in Tsuchiura you could check out. BUT their business is to rent you a bicycle for a day or two. Renting long term would likely be very expensive. But feel free to ask them.

Most rental bicycles in Japan are mamachari (if you donft know what that is, Wikipedia is your friend). However searching for ]ԃ^X this page came up: https://aomori-cycling.com/travel-guide/rent-a-cycle-station/
They say that they can answer in foreign languages as well. I take that to mean English.

I canft advise on cycle shops in Aomori as I havenft lived there. There must be some though.

But I would suggest to seriously consider to bring your new bicycles along: you can buy in your home country and get all explanations (I assume you donft speak Japanese, so unless you are a bicycle expert it might be very hard for you to explain the clerk in the shop what you want), you can preorder and are thus not limited to the choice available in that moment in the shop, you can control costs better, do some test rides, get used to your baggage, buy the bags. ...
Frankly I donft see any advantage buying a bicycle locally.

I know people do travel with bicycles in airplanes. (I could say so that I have done so myself repeatedly but a brompton probably doesnft count, but I have friends who did with normal touring bicycles).

If you plan to skip some parts WITHIN Japan by taking a train you MUST have a bicycle bag in which you can fit the entire bicycle. Otherwise it is not allowed. No exceptions for tired foreigners. ( yes, there is one train in Boso peninsula and one by Matsue that seem to allow gnakedh bicycles but this is the great exception.

If you have any other bicycle ride related question I can help with, let me know.

Enjoy your ride through Japan!

by LikeBike (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Across Japan on Bike 2019/2/21 04:07
Wow thank you very much for the very details answer!

Yeah I researched some more and buying on in my own country would be easier.

About transportation in a train: I guess I have to travel from Tokyo to Aomori by train. My airline offers cardboxes to transport the bike. Can I leave it in there or do I really need to buy a bicycle bag?

I will also have a look at your blog. :)

Best regards
by Daniel (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Across Japan on Bike 2019/2/21 13:45
Regarding leaving the bicycle in the cardboard box:
It will depend on size. JR allowances are written here:


BUT Shinkansen are not constructed for bringing a lot of baggage. There is no designated baggage area!

I am also not sure how easily it is to manouver such a cardboard box through a station.

You could look into Yamatobin, a delivery service: http://www.kuronekoyamato.co.jp/ytc/en/send/services/yamatobin/

Note that TAQBIN has size restrictions but Yamatobin does apparently not. If you want to use that service I would call them ahead (they have an English help desk) and make sure if there is a desk at Narita airport for you to send. I sent my brompton in its cardboard box in January from Narita and the later from Tokyo to Osaka and back again. At the airport initially they told me that they wouldnft ship a bicycle... but after measuring the box and assuring that I had sent it already in the past with them, it was possible.

After all this talk about box, I would however still suggest to buy a cycle bag. Something may happen during your trip and you need to skip some part by taking bus/train... a cycle bag doesnft weight a lot nor is it going to be a big investment. You can buy them in Japan in any major bicycle shop that deals in road cycles. But Ifd come prepared just in case. Also a bag makes your bicycle easier to transport than the box.

Did you say which months you plan to go? (Unlessit is golden week or year end no real impact on your transport but wondering about weather and temperature).

Happy planning.
by LikeBike (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Across Japan on Bike 2019/2/21 14:56
I'm curious.

Aomori to Kagoshima most direct route is 1909km. You'll double that doing the tourist thing.

You say you and your friends dont own bikes currently. You okay peddling 60-70km per day?

You are covering seven regions (Tohoku, Kanto and Kyush etc). Most people would spend a week or more for each region. But they use bus, train and/or cars. So can you cover similar riding a bike at 20-30kph compared to the faster options?
by hakata14 (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Across Japan on Bike 2019/3/19 06:54
By chance I found this shop in Osaka that rents touring bicycles: https://globalwheels-japan.com/

I haven't used them or anything, and I still think it make more sense to buy your own bicycles, but if not, here would be a potential solution.
by LikeBike rate this post as useful

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