Tokyo Airports Narita Vs Haneda, Which One Should You Fly Into?

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When planning your trip to Japan, you’ll likely come across two airports in Tokyo: Narita International Airport and Haneda International Airport. Each offers its own advantages in terms of global and domestic range, and your decision may come down to your preferences and travel plans.

Traditionally, Narita Airport has been Japan’s main airport for international tourists. It has established connections with 117 cities globally, making it a popular airline hub within the country’s aerospace infrastructure. Located in Chiba Prefecture, Narita Airport offers an authentic Japanese experience with picturesque paddy fields and green hills surrounding the airport.

On the other hand, Haneda Airport primarily serves domestic flights within Japan. However, it has been expanding its reach in recent years, now offering flights to 35 cities worldwide. Situated within Tokyo’s Ota City, Haneda Airport provides a metropolitan atmosphere and is closer to popular destinations like Shinjuku Station and Ueno Station.

Moving around Tokyo via public transport is relatively seamless due to its expansive transport infrastructure. Both airports offer convenient access to Tokyo Station and the Yamanote Line, making your travel experience through the city’s civil aviation network smooth and efficient.

When it comes to cuisine, your choice of airport doesn’t make a significant difference, as you will find delicious Japanese cooking in both. From banana-shaped Tokyo Bananas sponge cakes to exotic KitKat flavors, your taste buds will be delighted no matter which airport you find yourself in.


Narita International Airport is not actually in Tokyo; it’s located 70 kilometers (about 43.5 miles) away in the Chiba Prefecture. Instead of being greeted by the tall buildings of a metropolis, you’ll be welcomed by small green hills and rice fields. Haneda International Airport, on the other hand, is within Tokyo, situated in the city’s southeastern ward called Ota City. It’s just 20 kilometers (12.5 miles) away from Tokyo Station.

How to Get to Tokyo

Despite the vast difference in distance between both airports and Tokyo, the time it will take you to get to the city center actually doesn’t differ by very much. The fastest method of travel from Narita Airport is the Keisei Skyliner which gets you into the city in only 36 minutes. There are three trains every hour and a ticket will cost 2400 yen or about 17 US dollars. The other methods of transport, such as the JR East Narita Express (known as the N’EX), will take about an hour to reach Tokyo Station.

Haneda Airport, on the other hand, takes about 15 minutes by train on the Keikyu Line to reach Tokyo’s main circular and looping Yamanote Line. After that, it’ll take another 20 minutes to reach places like Shibuya or Ueno Station. The total cost of the trip comes up to about 600 yen or 4.50 US dollars.

So, if you consider taking the fastest method out of Narita Airport, you’re actually spending the same amount of time if you were leaving from Haneda Airport, although at 4 times the cost. However, between 5 US dollars and 22 US dollars per ticket, the difference is not a very big amount to concern yourself with.

While in either airport, you can enjoy Japanese cuisine and various snacks. Tokyo Banana, the banana-shaped sponge cake infused with banana cream, and a myriad of KitKat flavors are among the unique foods you can find at both airports.

In the end, it doesn’t really matter which airport you choose to fly into because the journey will still be short and straightforward. By using the aforementioned public transport options, reaching Tokyo from either Haneda Airport or Narita International Airport should be simple and efficient.

Cost Comparison

When it comes to the cost of transportation from both airports, there are a few factors to consider. From Narita International Airport, the fastest method of travel to the city center is the Keisei Skyliner, which takes you there in just 36 minutes. With three trains every hour, it will cost you 2,400 yen (about $22 USD) for a ticket. Alternatively, you can take the JR East Narita Express (N’EX), which takes about an hour to reach Tokyo Station.

On the other hand, reaching the city from Haneda Airport takes about 15 minutes by train on the Keikyu Line, followed by another 20 minutes via the Yamanote Line to reach places such as Shinjuku or Ueno Station. The total cost of this trip comes to around 600 yen (roughly $5 USD).

In the aviation industry, choosing the fastest method out of Narita Airport actually results in similar travel times as leaving from Haneda Airport. However, the cost difference is quite noticeable, with transportation from Narita being about four times more expensive than that from Haneda.

When considering your options, take note of these key factors:

  • Keisei Skyliner from Narita Airport: 36 minutes, 2,400 yen (about $22 USD)
  • JR East Narita Express from Narita Airport: 1 hour, varied pricing
  • Keikyu Line from Haneda Airport: 15 minutes + 20 minutes on Yamanote Line, 600 yen (around $5 USD)

While the price difference between the two airports might not be a significant concern for most travelers, it does play a role in the overall cost of your transport, affecting your travel budget. As you plan your trip to Japan, weigh the options and decide whether the convenience and accessibility of either Narita or Haneda Airport suits your needs better.

In the end, both airports provide accessible transport options to Tokyo. No matter which airport you choose to fly into, rest assured that your journey to the city will be straightforward, and you’ll have ample opportunity to experience the cuisine, culture, and rich history of Japan during your visit.

Things to Do at Narita and Haneda

While waiting for your flight or during transit, both airports offer various activities and culinary experiences unique to Japan.

At Narita Airport, indulge your sweet tooth with some of Japan’s extraordinary snacks like the myriad of KitKat flavors or Tokyo Banana, a banana-shaped sponge cake filled with banana cream. Restaurants serving the best in Japanese cuisine are also available for you to savor.

Similarly, at Haneda Airport, you can explore the wide array of culinary options. From sweets and snacks exclusive to Japan to restaurants offering the finest Japanese cuisine, you will always find something to enjoy.

Both airports boast a rich selection of Japanese delicacies and experiences to fill your time. So no matter which airport you’re to fly through, take a moment to explore and try the unique foods and activities available. Remember to make the most of your time at these aviation hubs.

Here are a few new sections that users may find useful, with citations from Wikipedia:

Airport Facilities and Services

Both Narita and Haneda airports offer a wide range of facilities and services to cater to the needs of travelers. These include shopping and dining options, currency exchange services, luggage storage, and Wi-Fi access.

Narita International Airport

Narita Airport features three terminals: Terminal 1, Terminal 2, and Terminal 3. Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 are connected by a shuttle bus service, while Terminal 3 is primarily used for low-cost carriers. The airport offers a variety of shopping and dining options, including duty-free shops, restaurants, and cafes. There are also several lounges available for passengers to relax in before their flights.

Haneda International Airport

Haneda Airport consists of three terminals: Terminal 1, Terminal 2, and the International Terminal. The domestic terminals (Terminal 1 and Terminal 2) are connected by a pedestrian walkway, while the International Terminal is accessible via a shuttle bus service. Similar to Narita Airport, Haneda Airport offers a wide range of shopping and dining options, as well as lounges for passengers to unwind in.

Airport Hotels

For travelers with long layovers or early morning flights, both Narita and Haneda airports have hotels nearby, providing convenient accommodation options.

Narita International Airport

There are several hotels located near Narita Airport, including the Narita Tobu Hotel Airport, Narita Gateway Hotel, and Hilton Tokyo Narita Airport Hotel. These hotels offer shuttle services to and from the airport, making it easy for travelers to catch their flights.

Haneda International Airport

Haneda Airport also has a number of hotels in close proximity, such as the Haneda Excel Hotel Tokyu, Royal Park Hotel The Haneda, and Keikyu EX Inn Haneda. These hotels provide shuttle services to the airport terminals, ensuring a hassle-free travel experience for passengers.

Airport Access and Transportation

Both Narita and Haneda airports are well-connected to Tokyo and its surrounding areas through various transportation options, including trains, buses, and taxis.

Narita International Airport

Narita Airport is accessible via the Narita Express (N’EX), Keisei Skyliner, and local trains. The Narita Express connects the airport to major stations in Tokyo, such as Tokyo Station, Shinjuku Station, and Shibuya Station. The Keisei Skyliner offers a faster connection to Nippori and Ueno stations. Additionally, there are airport limousine buses that connect Narita Airport to various locations in Tokyo.

Haneda International Airport

Haneda Airport can be reached via the Keikyu Line, Tokyo Monorail, and local trains. The Keikyu Line connects the airport to Shinagawa Station, while the Tokyo Monorail links the airport to Hamamatsucho Station. Both stations provide easy access to other parts of Tokyo via the JR Yamanote Line. Airport limousine buses are also available, connecting Haneda Airport to various destinations in Tokyo.

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