Our Most Asked Questions on Access and Hotels
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If you have a recognized valid international driver’s license then there are a large number of car rental firms at the airport to choose from. Toyota rent a car and Nippon rent a car have English online booking services. More information about driving in Japan can be found here. Japan Guide
Most people arrive in Japan via one of the two main international airports, Tokyo Narita (NRT) or Osaka Kansai (KIX). Most major airlines such as Qantas, Singapore Airlines, JAL and budget carriers such as Jetstar have regular flights to Tokyo and Osaka.
Use this link to help plan: JR Planner. The main train station that services the Niseko Resort Area is Kutchan (8km from the resort). Please do not use Niseko or Hirafu station as the train rarely stops at Hirafu and Niseko station is further away from Hirafu Niseko than Kutchan.
Several airlines operate daily from Narita to Chitose-Sapporo. These include budget airlines Jetstar, AirAsia and Skymark. National carriers ANA and JAL also have daily flights. It is also possible to fly from Tokyo Haneda Airport (HND) but this will require a 90 minute transfer via bus from Narita.
No. You can turn in the exchange order any time after arrival in Japan at any of Japan Rail’s exchange offices and you can specify any date on which you wish the pass to start.
There are direct shuttle buses that link Narita and Haneda airports. The cost is 3,000yen and the journey takes approximately 75 minutes depending on traffic. No need for prior reservations. More information can be found here: www.limousinebus.co.jp
Yes the Hirafu parking lot#1 bus stop is the closest to all our accommodation. It is the main bus stop in Niseko Hirafu and is within 1km from most all our peoperties in the main village of Hirafu. We pick all our guests up there free of charge. We'll be holding a sign with your name on it and driving white vans with green Holiday Niseko logos. Often the bus is not on time due to road conditions. If we aren't there when you arrive, please go into the building the bus stops at (called the Welcome Center) tell the staff you booked with Holiday Niseko and they'll call us and we'll be up within 5 minutes. We also drop our guests off there as well when they depart.
The Chitose-Tokyo route is the busiest domestic air route in Japan and one of the world’s busiest handling over 8 million passengers annually. The two major Japanese airlines ANA and JAL plus discount carriers Skymark, and AirDO operate on this route.
Basically you will need to pre-book a private charter for your group which can leave anytime you wish for 29,000yen for 1-2 people, 35,000yen for up to 5 people and 45,000yen for up to 9 people one way. If you'd rather not take the private transfer we suggest spending a night in Chitose or Sapporo city then coming to Niseko in the morning. If you want to get to Niseko as early as possible staying at Sapporo would be the go as trains depart from Sapporo for Niseko as early as 06:51 getting to Niseko (Kutchan station) at 07:50. From Chitose airport it takes 40 minutes to get to Sapporo station. If you stay at Chitose the only direct transfer option to Niseko is the bus, the earliest bus departs for Niseko at 9:30 arriving at 12:00. If you choose to stay in Sapporo then we suggest staying near Sapporo station. If you choose to stay in Chitose then stay near the airport or Chitose train station in Chitose city, a ten minute train/taxi ride from the airport.
The two major Japanese airlines ANA and JAL operate domestic flights daily from Kansai International Airport (KIX). Budget airlines Jetstar and PEACH also operate daily from Kansai. Please note that Osaka has another airport that is also used for domestic flights called Itami Airport (ITM).
You do not need a car to access all areas of the Niseko united ski area. The ski areas are interlinked by lifts at the top of the mountain, so you can access all areas on skis by going to the top lifts, then traversing over to the next door resort. Also at the bottom of each resort there is a free bus that interlinks the resorts at the bottom.
The last domestic flight from Narita (NRT)to Sapporo Chitose is 19:00. The last flight from Haneda (HND) airport to Sapporo Chitose (CTS) is 23:30 which lands after the last train to Sapporo (22:50) and the last bus to the Niseko Resort Area at 21:30. Arriving in Chitose after the last train and bus, your options are limited to staying in Chitose or a private shuttle to Niseko which needs to be arranged in advance. The best option would be to spend a night in Tokyo near Haneda (HND) airport and catch a morning flight to Sapporo Chitose (CTS).
Yes you can get to Narita airport by 6pm from Niseko on the same day comfortably. The earliest scheduled bus leaves for Chitose airport from Niseko at 8:10 and arrives Chitose 11:00am. Several airlines (Jetstar, Air Asia, JAL and ANA) operate flights from Chitose to Tokyo's International Narita airport. There are also frequent flights from Chitose to Tokyo's domestic Haneda airport. The flight time is 90 minutes. From Haneda to Narita airport it's a 90 minute bus transfer which costs 3,000yen per-person. No reservations required. These buses (called Airport limousine) also leave very frequently. If you manage to get a flight departing from Chitose to Haneda at 12:00, you will be able to get to Narita by 4:00pm comfortably. So a 6pm International departure from Nartia would be the earliest if you were to fly into Haneda from Chitose. Lastly there is an alternative to the coach transfers from Niseko to Chitose airport which can get you to Chitose when ever you wish. Private transfers are 35,000yen one way for up to 5 passengers. And 45,000yen one way for up to 9 passengers.
Rakuten Travel has an English hotel finder that offers discounts for hotels throughout Japan. ANA has hotels near most major airports and there is a hotel inside Chitose airport.
The most convenient way is via bus transfer. The journey will take between 2.5 hours and 3.5 hours depending on road conditions. If staying in Hirafu village please get off at the Hirafu Welcome Center (Hirafu #1 Parking lot) The Hokkaido Access Network Resort Liner operates in winter from 9:30am to 21:30. Holiday Niseko is a booking agent for the Resort Liner and we can arrange your transfers with them. Holiday Niseko can also arrange private transfers between the Niseko Resort Area, airport or Sapporo city.
If your plane arrives after 8:40pm your choices are private transfer, car rental or to stay in Sapporo city or Chitose city for the night. The last bus departs the airport at 21:30. If your plane departs before 11:45am it is possible to catch a train to the airport. The earliest train departs Kutchan station at 5:22am and arrives at the airport around 8:30am. (You will have to take a taxi from the Niseko Resort Area to Kutchan Station.) Skybus has a private transfer option to the airport. Staying a night in Sapporo city or Chitose city and taking the train to the airport in the morning is also an option. From downtown Sapporo city to Chitose airport the fastest and least expensive way to get there is by train. The cost is 1,040yen for adults. The earliest train departing Sapporo station to Chitose airport is at 6:00 am, arriving at the airport ay 6:48am. This will leave you enough time to check in comfortably for domestic flights departing as early as 7:30am.
The closest international airport to the Niseko Resort Area is New Chitose International Airport (CTS) also referred to as Sapporo Chitose (CTS). The airport is located in Chitose city which is 36km south east of Sapporo city and 115km east of the Niseko Resort Area. Information for New Chitose airport can be found here Chitose airport