OWL Magazine Korea

Tokyo Airports: Narita vs. Haneda

When searching for flights for a trip to Tokyo, Japan, you’ll notice there are two airports: Narita and Haneda. Flights from Incheon Airport to Narita and from Gimpo Airport to Haneda are available simultaneously. While tickets for “Incheon to Narita” flights are generally more affordable, making decisions based solely on ticket prices might lead to unforeseen challenges.

“Tokyo’s Two Airports: Narita and Haneda”

The two airports in Tokyo, Haneda and Narita, are significantly distant from each other. Of the two, the airport actually located in Tokyo is Haneda. Narita Airport is situated in Chiba, not Tokyo, and lies to the east of Tokyo.

“Proximity to Tokyo City Center: Haneda Airport”

Haneda Airport, being in Tokyo, boasts excellent accessibility to the city center. It takes approximately 20 to 30 minutes by train to reach Tokyo Station from Haneda Airport, making it highly convenient.

In contrast, even with the fastest transport option, the Narita Express train from Narita Airport, entering Tokyo’s city center takes over an hour.

“Lower Prices at Narita Airport”

However, due to the closer proximity of Haneda Airport, flights departing from there tend to be pricier. Haneda Airport is considerably smaller in scale compared to Narita, resulting in fewer flight options and naturally higher ticket prices.

Flights departing from Narita Airport, with their more extensive schedule, often provide the advantage of lower prices.

“Consider Additional Transportation Costs from Narita Airport”

Yet, it’s essential to consider the transportation costs of getting from Narita Airport to Tokyo’s city center. Narita Airport is notably distant from central Tokyo, requiring additional expenses and time for transportation. Various transportation options are available, each with its associated costs:

  • JR Narita Express (N’EX): Round trip fare 4,000 yen (Foreigner rate, passport required)
  • JR Airport Narita: One-way 1,317 yen
  • Keisei Skyliner: One-way 2,470 yen
  • Bus (TYO-NRT): 1,000 yen
  • Taxi: One way 22,000 yen (excluding expressway toll)

Even with a conservative estimate, an additional 2,000 yen is required for transportation from Narita Airport. While Narita-bound flights may seem significantly cheaper when considering ticket prices alone, factoring in these extra costs makes for a more accurate comparison.

“Conclusion: Haneda-Gimpo Route Might Be Better If Price Difference Isn’t Significant”

In conclusion, if the price difference in flights isn’t substantial, opting for Haneda Airport from Gimpo Airport may be more advantageous. Departing from Gimpo Airport in Seoul rather than Incheon Airport also reduces travel time and costs. Additionally, transportation from Haneda Airport to Tokyo’s city center is more cost and time-effective than from Narita Airport. While exceptionally low prices for flights to Narita Airport might make it a viable choice in certain scenarios, for most cases, traveling through Haneda Airport proves to be more favorable.