In Japan, we have many options for transportation. Public transportation like trains, subways and busses usually arrive on time. Especially big cities like Tokyo there are so many stations so you don’t need to buy a car. But if you want to travel somewhere or buy heavy items, cars can be helpful. But buying and maintaining a car is always a troublesome. Lots of paper-works, have to wait for a couple of month to get a car, parking lots are expensive, bla bla bla…
If you think owing a car doesn’t deserve that much but you want to use, how about thinking an easier way? Here I introduce you 2 ways to use a car in a casual way.
[Reference: Nico-Nico rent-a-car (http://niconico9054.on.omisenomikata.jp)]
Rent-a-car service is a very popular in Japan. If you are not confident with your Japanese language or you have an international driver’s license, these companies will help you. They all are famous and reliable rent-a-car chains.
NIPPON Rent-A-Car is one of the most biggest rent-a-car chains in Japan. Their rental offices are usually located near train stations.
-TOYOTA Rent a Car
If you love TOYOTA cars, TOYOTA Rent a Car is the best choice. They have variety of TOYOTA cars including latest hybrid ones with nice conditions.
-Times Car RENTAL
Times Car RENTAL can provide you a rent-a-car in cheaper price than other 2 chains. They have less rental offices but still a lot.
If you can speak Japanese or have someone to help you, and you have a Japanese driver’s license, here is another cheaper option.
You can rent a car with much cheaper price at Nico-Nico Rent-a-car. It usually costs around 4,000JPY – 6,000JPY for renting a light vehicle for 6 hours. But Nico-Nico costs only about 2,000JPY. Their rental offices are in gas stations so car conditions are highly guaranteed. My husband and I used to use this chain a lot before we got our car. They are very kind and cars were pretty well maintained. I’d like to recommend this chain.
2. Car sharing service
[Reference: Nikkei Business ONLINE (http://business.nikkeibp.co.jp/article/opinion/20140521/265040/?rt=nocnt)]
The company named Times provide us not only rent-a-car service but car-sharing service. If you register on Internet, you can use a car from 15 minutes for only 206JPY. When you use a rent-a-car you have to go to a rental office and talk with staff, fill forms and check everything with the staff. But car-sharing all you have to do is to go to parking lots and open a car door using a key that will be sent after you register, and drive. You don’t need to even refuel after use. This service is still new but the market is already huge. I’ve seen many car-sharing parking lots in Tokyo. You can use with your international license.