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Blake Ellison
Tokyo, Japan
Author of Konnichiwhoa, a Japan travel guide with insider tips from a Tokyo-based expat
Interests: travel, japan, meeting new people, asian cinema, japanese, cheap flights, cheap hotels
Recent Activity
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Japanese public places are not really the place for random conversations. More importantly, Japanese commuters, overall, are just not in the mood to talk to strangers. Continue reading
Posted Mar 11, 2014 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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JR's Narita Express train has cut its price in half for foreign travelers. This means that it just became the best value for your money to get from Narita Airport to central Tokyo. The price is falling from roughly 3,000... Continue reading
Posted Jan 8, 2014 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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FlightFox is a unique new Web startup that can save you a lot of money on your ticket to Japan. For $29, you can save $100 or more on your ticket and possibly even get an upgrade. The site is... Continue reading
Posted Aug 27, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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We're creeping up on the one-year anniversary of the March 11th earthquake, tsunami and nuclear meltdown that turned northeastern Japan upside-down. 23 million tons of debris is said to be scattered around areas hit by the tsunami. The photo on... Continue reading
Posted Mar 4, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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Japan is a great place to study abroad. Japanese students are relaxed during their college years, and foreigners get to enjoy the safety and health that the country is known for. Studying abroad in Japan is ideal for college students,... Continue reading
Posted Feb 25, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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If you're a young person with one year to spare and you come from a country that allows it, it's super easy for you to spend one year working in Japan with a working holiday visa. This type of visa... Continue reading
Posted Feb 24, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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Conveyor belt sushi is famous for bringing around Japan's best-known food with no effort, but it's also one of the best ways to eat out cheaply while you're here. Also known as revolving sushi or kaiten-zushi, the video above sets... Continue reading
Posted Feb 23, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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Ah, hot springs. One of the finer parts of life in Japan. You should definitely experience one while you're there. While there can also be some very real experiences in culture shock while you're there, the onsen is absolutely worth... Continue reading
Posted Feb 20, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
"Is Japan cool?" asks Japanese airline ANA. If this video is any indication, it's great. It's part of a new international ANA ad campaign hoping to boost Japanese tourism in 2012. It covers pretty much all the major things tourists... Continue reading
Posted Feb 17, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
American beer commercials are known for sex and bland jokes. When Japanese beer giant Sapporo Beer wanted to make a quintessentially Japanese commercial for its beer, however, things were very different. The result is a traipse through countless old Japanese... Continue reading
Posted Feb 16, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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Beer lovers will either love or hate their trip to Japan. Fans of light lagers will find the stuff fresh and cheap anywhere they go. But real beer snobs seeking the darker, stronger or more complex brews get bored easily.... Continue reading
Posted Feb 16, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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It's spring, and you know what that means: cherry blossoms! Also known as sakura, the pink flowers are a national symbol for Japan despite being short-lived every year. The Japanese Weather Association also predicts when the trees will bloom each... Continue reading
Posted Feb 15, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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Valentine's Day in Japan is celebrated, but with a twist: Women give presents to men! It's another sign that Japanese society is still pretty male-dominated. There are three more facts you need to know about Valentine's Day gifts in Japan:... Continue reading
Posted Feb 13, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
Wondering what 1 dollar is worth right now in Japanese Yen? Wonder no more, with this live chart from xe.com. Just click 'Go!' to see the current rate. Of course, even though this data is current, don't take this for... Continue reading
Posted Feb 13, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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Have a flight out of Narita Airport? It's a huge building, and there's a lot to do. I've been through the airport bunches of times, so I've rounded it down to just a few places visitors should hit up in... Continue reading
Posted Feb 13, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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Did you know that Kit Kats - yes, those breakable chocolate bars - are big in Japan? The thing is, they come in a ridiculous variety of flavors, and even sometimes get exclusives that are limited to a season or... Continue reading
Posted Feb 13, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
This one's pretty fun: members of pop group Morning Musume are basically doing cool backwards throws to put everyday objects in their places. Trash is thrown in the appropriate cans, canned drinks are shoved across tables, cell phones are thrown... Continue reading
Posted Feb 13, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
The Candy Shop is part of the Konnichiwhoa Mini-Shop, which sells Japanese goods, travel products and is powered by Amazon for shipping, payments and security. Get more info here. Continue reading
Posted Feb 11, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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People love their iPhones, so I'm not surprised when visitors ask me if their phone will work in Japan. People have heard that their cell phones won't work in Japan for a variety of reasons, but it's mostly old news.... Continue reading
Posted Feb 11, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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Roppongi Hills is almost a city in itself. There are places to shop, eat, live, and play. It's also a hub for high-end culture in Japan with a number of luxury restaurants, international fashion brands, and apartment towers known for... Continue reading
Posted Feb 10, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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Nights at a 5-star Japan hotel are on sale! A "New Deluxe" room, normally from 39,000 yen, is just 18,000 yen. The "Plaza Premier" room, typically 43,000 yen, is just 20,000 yen. These prices are good for single and twin... Continue reading
Posted Feb 8, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
If you're a serious cat lover, you may want to visit one of Japan's cat cafes for the novelty. Basically, you can pay to go play with a cat. Some of them will also serve you coffee or such, but... Continue reading
Posted Feb 7, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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San Francisco is the world's first airport to get its own yoga space! The space comes with low lights and blue walls, setting it apart from the otherwise bright and contrasted colors inside SFO airport. The idea came from a... Continue reading
Posted Feb 6, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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Oden isn't the famous kind of Japanese food that tourists come to the country for, but locals and expats know it all too well. It's a sort of cuisine - it's a collection of things that are boiled in a... Continue reading
Posted Feb 3, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide
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An expat in Japan has done a quick write-up on a festival in Japan where young women, dressed in kimonos, participate in an archery competition. The Toshiya Archery Event is part of the coming-of-age ceremonies for 20-year-olds, held nationwide in... Continue reading
Posted Feb 2, 2012 at Konnichiwhoa Japan Guide