Episode 30: Visiting Japan and Buying Tickets

This week Heidi, Lella, and Carly talk in-depth about traveling to Japan to see Takarazuka and the various ways you can procure tickets, both official and secondhand.

Helpful links:

Transportation:
airfarewatchdog.com
Hopper
japan-rail-pass.com
willerexpress.com/en/
PASMO/SUICA cards

General Accommodations:
booking.com
APA Hotels
MyStays
Airbnb

Hostels in Takarazuka:
Takara-ya
Renoir
Pucchi House

Official tickets:
English ticket site
Japanese ticket site

Secondhand tickets and ticket trading:
ticketcamp.net
ticket.co.jp
okepi.net

7 thoughts on “Episode 30: Visiting Japan and Buying Tickets”

  1. Oh goodness, I didn’t realize I was speaking so softly for my mic so much >< Apologies for the times when I was hard to hear! If anyone needs clarification on anything please don't hesitate to drop a line <3

    I'll have a much better set up for the next episode I appear on so hopefully this won't be a problem again ;;

  2. I haven’t had a chance to listen all the way through, so apologies if this is already covered, but some cheap, reasonably close hostels in Tokyo with cheerful staff fluent in English and great at suggesting other touristy things to do around town (or to find others willing to do things together):

    Sakura Hotel @ Jimbocho is a straight shot down the Toei Mita Line (although with a little walking inside Hibiya Station to get to the exit closest to the theater.) It has the added benefit of being in the used bookstore area of Tokyo, if you love browsing. I’ve stayed there in the girls’ dorm at least once a year every year from 2003-2012, and the quality has gone up and down depending on the owners, but the last time I stayed there in 2016 it was doing well.

    Khaosan @ Asakusa. Very clean. Asakusa is cool for tourism. To get to the Tokyo Theater: Ginza Line to Ginza Station, then switch to Hibiya Line, one stop to Hibiya Station.

  3. I’ve been to Japan 4 times so far to see Takarazuka. I usually land at the Kansai airport and take off from Tokyo. I like staying in Osaka because I can do side trips to Kyoto or Nara from there. I try to do something other than Takarazuka when I go.
    I highly recommend renting a pocket wi-fi. Absolutely necessary for navigating around town. Once I decided to take a walk around the block and got totally lost. The pocket wi-fi saved me and got me back to my hotel.

  4. Nice episode !
    I already knew a lot of things but I also learned new things. Thank you.
    It was fun to hear your little anecdotes ^^

    I have always bought my tickets in conbini. I have always had pretty good seats and even got a almost center 7th row once. It is very convenient. Unfortunately it can also crash at opening hours for popular shows…
    My dream is to get a ss seki one day but I am a bit scared by the auctions… I have also heard of some Japanese people who won’t accept to sell to foreigners which makes me a bit uncomfortable…
    I’ve had a lot of toujitsuken experiences. Honestly I don’t recommend tachimi in Tokyo if you don’t have opera glasses…But in Takarazuka it is not bad at all. But be prepared, your legs are gonna suffer!
    Also be aware that you may not be able to get a ticket even if coming very early…Few years ago even though I took the first train I didn’t get any tickets… I can tell you it feels horrible. Waiting five hours in the cold for nothing…!

    I am planning to go in Japan next year and see three troupe if I can without spending too much for train or bus…
    I will probably use some of your tips 😉
    Thank you

    1. I think we mentioned this, but you can rent opera glasses at the theaters – it’s a 5000 yen deposit which you get returned when you bring them back, and a 500 yen fee for the use (non-refundable). But what I like about Tokyo tachimi is that you don’t have people behind you and you get a set space to yourself on a bar, so you’re not too crowded in. Also, up at the top of the balcony is great for dance-heavy shows, you can see the choreography from a really cool angle up there – we saw Guys and Dolls that way a couple times and enjoyed it. But everyone has their own preferences!

      Toujitsuken / same day tix are always a bit of a gamble, especially with popular shows.

      It’s totally doable to do three troupes! Scheduling might be a bit tricky, but generally easiest if you can land one of the small theaters in Osaka or Tokyo rather than a National tour. We managed to see Romanesque Mask in Saitama, which is pretty close to Tokyo, and also the Bow hall show in addition to Grand Theater and Tokyo theaters. The Tokyo International Forum is super close to the Tokyo theater too, so if there’s ever anything going on there that’s pretty easy. So going between Osaka and Takarazuka is pretty cheap of course, and easy to get around anywhere in Tokyo, so you can definitely hit 3 troupes in one trip on the “cheap” (transportation wise, anyway!).

  5. Just want to say THANK YOU for all the tips in this episode (and this fantastic podcast in general!)!! I just had my very first trip to Japan, and was able to get tickets to MUGEN-MUSO online, then the sold-out CASANOVA on Okepi, which was a wonderful surprise. And as in Carly’s story, I got a very, VERY, *Unbelievably* nice seat that was spitting distance from Mirio. I have you ladies to thank for making this trip that much more wonderful!!

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