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Toyoko Inn 2007/7/14 09:48
Can anyone tell me if the chain Toyoko Inn is good for foreign travellers?
by Gerard  

. 2007/7/14 11:05
Toyoko Inn is proably the single most talked about hotel chain in this forum, please utilize the search function and you'll see.
by John rate this post as useful

TOYOKO INN 2007/7/14 11:11
If you are after reasonable priced, clean but, small room (do not forget simple breakfast is included) I would highly recommend Toyoko Inn any time. Make sure select the closest to station if choices are available.
by Liem rate this post as useful

Toyoko Inn 2007/7/14 14:42
I use Toyoko Inn regularly. They're clean, quiet, efficient, professional and cheap. They're good for people who are spending one night and want to be near a station.

They're not a good place to relax. In fact, they don't even want you in the room during the day time, though I don't think there is a lock out, as some guest houses employ. The service is efficient but not good. They are not especially foreigner friendly. And they donft offer English, though an individual staff member may well speak enough of it to help you.

Ifve never got the feeling that I was particularly welcome there, but I donft think anybody gets that feeling. Itfs just business.

The law requires that foreigners (but not Japanese) leave a copy of their passports at any hotel where they stay. This law, however doesnft apply to foreigners with permanent visas (green cards). The hotelfs policy, though, is that ALL foreigners leave a copy of their passports. They say itfs the law. But it is not the law. It is their own policy. (Ifve read both documents.) They do it, of course, because itfs easier than checking visas and making decisions for each individual case. I understand that. Like I said, itfs just a businessa very efficient business. Yet still Ifm opposed to the practice because it is de facto racism.

Yet I stay there. And if I didnft have a permanent visa I wouldnft have any problems with them.

They not only offer a free breakfast (onigiri and miso shiru--rice balls and soup) and coffee, they also have free curry rice at dinner time for those who are there in the lobby at the time it is served.

by Edo rate this post as useful

Toyoko Inn 2007/7/14 14:59
I love Toyokko inn!. small rooms? just like the average 2 stars hotel in Europe. god points: they have great air conditioning units that heat or cool, LAN for computers in the room, toilet-bidets and all sorts of practical stuff. I am a man and always got great service,and in English too. let's not forget that their prices are low and their locations very handy (most of the time)
as far as taking copies of passports...I was born in Western Europe where some countries used to ask their own citizens to report to the police any change of address and hotels would ask clients their national ID card andrecord it for the police doesn't bother me
by Plantagenesta rate this post as useful

. 2007/7/14 15:00
On the passport issue, they never ask me for mine, as a 4&5 member they already have that information on file. Everytime I present my point card they never ask for a passport copy, and this was staying at their hotels in many cities around Japan.

They are not especially foreigner friendly. And they donft offer English, though an individual staff member may well speak enough of it to help you.
Considering that they make their website reservation available in english, chinese, and korean, it makes them one of the few national japanese hotel chains that I would say makes is foreigner friendly. On staffing issues, on not offering english staff, I don't know what people expect, but its certainly not limited to Japan, if a Japanese person checked into a bed and breakfast in England, I doubt there'd be a Japanese speaking staff member there to help them. What I'm saying is for the price I wouldn't expect 5 star hotel service, if it were a 5 star hotel then yes I would expect foreign language staff. Like you say its a business hotel, if someone wanted a homely feeling I suggest staying at a Ryokan or super service by spending 50,000+ JPY a night at the Park Hyatt.

Breakfast is offered at most properties, however dinner would be property specific, I know after stayng at many, many do not offer that option.

I think they are an Ok business hotel chain, mainly because they offer a similar product in every city they are in, and of course the multi-language reservation system makes it popular with many people.
by John rate this post as useful

toyoko-inns = fantastic! 2007/7/15 15:07
Hi, just to reiterate some earlier comments - Toyoko-Inn was the most convenient form of accommodation I have ever used in Japan. The service and quality overall varies depending on which hotel you stay at (though the same standard operating procedures at every hotel makes it very easy if you are using Toyoko-Inns for most of your travel because you know how to check-in). The free curry at night I believe is only available in Hokkaido. Some Toyoko-Inns offer a 'continental' or 'bread and coffee' breakfast which isnt as good as the miso soup and onigiri.

As for English-speaking staff - if you only speak English to them, it is likely they will find someone (the manager?) to speak English to you. Usually over a 24-48hr period there was one person there who spoke English to me when I stayed there. Sometimes I started off speaking to them in Japanese, and then I ran into problems, because they tried to speak to me in Japanese instead of English when I said I didnt understand!

I am 6-foot tall and found the room size fine - as other ppl have said, it isnt a 5-star hotel, so you dont need 5-star size/quality. Very comfortable, clean rooms. The shower might be a bit small, but thats not really an issue.

The coin-laundry downstairs is a definite bonus. The photocopying of a passport is not an issue. Free internet in the lobby - usually 1-3 computers with printer and free domestic phone calls (though they might be 20Yen...). One problem is it can be a bit hard to dial overseas if trying to use a reverse-charge or international phone card (because of the internal hotel phone system), but you can just use a payphone.

The twin rooms are quite large and comfortable - and the business/executive twins are fantastic if theyre the same price!

Some Toyoko-Inns are a little out of the way, but not usually, however the blue neon sign makes it easy to spot when arriving at night in a new city. Most hotels also carry information/maps of the surrounding area, as well as details and pictures of every other Toyoko-Inn in Japan in you are going to another Toyoko-Inn later in your trip.

You can also do an early check-in and leave your luggage in their foyer.

The Takkyubin luggage forwarding service is quite inexpensive and very easy to do between Toyoko-Inns - you just give them the business card of your next hotel and they'll fill out all the forms for you.

To summarise - I strongly recommend Toyoko-Inn - they are cheap, easy to use, comfortable, clean and polite. Very foreigner friendly, although some Inns in smaller towns might not have such a good, premium service. The free breakfast saved a lot of money spent on food.
hope this helps!
by td rate this post as useful

not fantastic 2007/7/16 04:25
There are lots of gfantastich hotels in the world. Toyoko Inn is not one of them. Itfs a clean, quiet, professional, and cheap chain hotel. But itfs a budget hotel and thatfs all it is. To call it gfantastich is an insult to a lot of much finer establishments.

There are all kinds of travelers in this world. Not all of them are poor (though I am). Not all of them rush from town to town (though I often do). Not all of them want to check in late and check out early. Not all of them want their doors left open all day while the staff services the rooms. Not all of them value a couple of rice balls served on paper plates in the hotel lobby in the morning--if you can even call it a lobby--and not all of them like to drink their coffee out of a Styrofoam cup, sitting elbow to elbow with strangers on hard seats at aluminum tables. Not all of them would even call that a breakfast.

I use Toyoko Inn regularly, as Ifve said. In March I stayed in Toyoko Inn in Takamatsu for two nights, but was asked to stay away from my room till after four if at all possible. After those two days I went on to stay at a Toyoko Inn in Matsuyama for three nights. There I was asked the same thing. That was no problem for me, as Ifm not the type who likes to hang out in a hotel room anyway. But I understand that not all travelers are like me.

In fact, Ifm not always like me. When I go to my own country for a visit I generally stay for a few days and I like to relax. I donft necessarily want to stay at a budget hotel, and I would be miserable at Toyoko Inn.

Some travelers like comfort and can afford it. I donft think Toyoko Inn is for them. Some travelers are demanding hey ring the front desk over and over all day and all night.I donft necessarily think Toyoko Inn is for them. Some travelers rely on their hotel for detailed information and travel services. I donft think Toyoko Inn is for them. Some travelers donft even like to handle their own luggage. I know Toyoko Inn isnft for them.

Further, I donft know what travelers expect in the way of English services, either, but I do know itfs absurd to expect those travelers to be capable Japanese speakers. (I am one, by the way, but Ifm the exception. Ifve spent half my life here.) English is the world language. Right or wrong, itfs the language I expect to use when I travel to other Asian, European, or African countries. And I think itfs the language most travelers to Japan expect to use here. I have seenshould I say I have heardforeign travelers nearly screaming in English at a Toyoko Inn reception counter, possibly believing volume alone would help make their English more comprehensible. Some travelers are just not good at communicating with poor speakers of English. I donft think Toyoko Inn is for them.

Itfs a good budget hotel. But thatfs all it is. Itfs convenient because it has become so ubiquitous here over the past few years. It is easy to book, as somebody has said. And though it is not the only Budget hotel in Japan that fits that bill, it may be the cheapest.

And by the way, in at least one of those Shikoku Toyoko Inns where I stayed last spring, I had the curry. So itfs not just in Hokkaido. It wasnft bad curry either. Not for me. But a lot of people wouldnft even call it diner. Maybe those people like nice restaurants at their hotels. Toyoko Inn isnft for them either.

It isnft gfantastich. Rather itfs exactly what I said it was in my earlier post. Itfs efficient, convenient, quiet and clean. And itfs cheap.

I highly recommend it to any budget traveler who regards his room as a place to come to late, sleep well, and leave early. To anybody who likes to relax in his room or in his hotel, or to anybody who is accustomed to a hotel with the most basic concierge services, for example, I recommend finding another place.

To anybody whose not comfortable communicating with people who don't speak English well, I recommend finding another place.

I say all of this because I want all who come here to enjoy, admire and love this country as much as I have.

But first of all, I want them to have a good trip--the kind of trip that suits them, whatever that is.
by Edo rate this post as useful

Toyoko Inn 2007/7/18 05:49
Edo makes some valid points but is unduly harsh about a few things.
I have been travelling to many countries since I was 14 and do not expect average local people to speak English or French, 2 of the several languages I know, althought many do (yes I had Japanese speaking French to me, and even middle age Texan farmers!). Even when people use very basic English I understand them. by the same token I understand people talking to me very slowly in Italian or Spanish. one can communicate very well with a few words and facial expressions, especially when the conversation is about renting a room or buying a souvenir, not quantum physics or the precise meaning of a Robbe Grillet sentence. I have stayed in relatively expensive places, like 4 nights in a 100 000 yen a night suite (I didn't pay that much and it was worth every yen!) yet like Toyoko Inn a lot. As far as having to leave the room while the staff cleans it, this is done in all hotels. it it just that expensive hotels, having more staff, are more discrete and able to clean a room as soon as the guest leaves it. but no hotel would let a guest stay in a room for a week and not allow staff to clean it.
The problem is that there are
too many tourists who aren't experienced enough and have unrealistic expectations..
The Toyoko Inns I stayed in all had a big lobby, and cafe and tea was served in china cups, not styrofoam ones. I was in Japan last year with a North American lady friend, who go regularly to luxury places, and she really liked the Toyoko Inn and the free Japanese breakfast. Actually we moved to a Toyoko Inn after a couple of days in a more expensive place-booked on the internet-that was too far from the train station we used several times a day.

By the way my parents had a cook and a maid. We all had to leave our bedrooms when the maid was cleaning and the first time we kids complained about it Dad read us the riot act! When travelling my parents and their friends seldom stayed in expensive places either, prefering to splurge on gourmet meals..
by Plantagenesta rate this post as useful

. 2007/7/18 06:01
Everyone defines "fantastic" differently. Just like how there are different types of travelers in the world.

I think Mos Burger makes a fantastic hamburger, I don't think I'm making an insult to burgers found elsewhere. For its price I think it is fantastic. A fantastic deal in other words.

Toyoko Inn is for its category of business. Which is providing services at the business hotel level.

Its not a 5 star hotel and doesn't bill itself as one. If one expects 5 star service pay 5 star prices and stay at a 5 star hotel.
by John rate this post as useful

? 2007/7/18 10:57
Does Toyoko Inn keep your luggage if you need to travel to another city for a few days? How long can they keep for you?
by Nana rate this post as useful

Canthey fit 3 pp to a room? 2007/7/25 23:00
There will be three of us traveling at the end of the year and Toyoko seems ideal price and location wise... however their website doesn't mention if they can take 3ppl/room or not, and I cant ask them coz there's no enquiries button. Does anyone know if they do accomodate for 3ppl??
by Sue rate this post as useful

. 2007/7/26 02:36
No at the most rooms can accomodate two people for double/twin rooms.
by John rate this post as useful

travelling with infant 2007/8/31 12:19
Anyone knows if the Toyoko accepts 2A and 1 infant in their double rooms? and is the double bed a queen size or a super single? Afraid it might be a tight squeeze for 3 of us if it's a super single.
by budget traveller rate this post as useful

. 2007/8/31 13:16
A toyoko-inn bed is 1600x2030 mm which is about the size of a king -sized bed.

Toyoko-Inn policy reads like this:

"Only one child may share a bed with a parent, a second child is counted as an adult guest".

One interpretation of this can mean 2 adults and one child = 3 guests in one room. I guess if you got a twin room with two beds then one child could share a bed with one parent for free, and the other adult share the other bed, or two adults share one bed and the child gets the other bed.
by John rate this post as useful

thanks! 2007/8/31 16:09

I was rejected by Super Hotel after booking a double room coz they said the capacity for the room is 2 persons. Even though they do not charge for children below 6, I have to book a triple room or an additional single room. Argh, really makes no sense to me.

Makes me worried whether I'll be rejected on the same grounds at Toyoko Inn as there's no option to specify no of children.

Is the bed that big? Thought it looked only a 1400mm bed (similar to the single room).
by budget traveller rate this post as useful

. 2007/8/31 16:28
If you had a double room 2adults and 1 child, that could be interpreted as 3 guests in one bed and I don't think they allow that. Would be cramped to begin with.

Where are you trying to stay at and what is your budget?
by John rate this post as useful

travelling with infant 2007/8/31 16:46
My little boy is only 1 yr old, so it's not that cramped really. I suppose if I book a twin room, it'll be allowed?

My budget is 10k per nt. Wanted to look for one near the main subway stations like Ueno, Ikebukuro, Shinjuku so that we don't need to lug our luggage transferring trains.
by budget traveller rate this post as useful

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