Help Coming to Japan for a couple months

Sylver

Warming-Up
Jul 9, 2015
6
0
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#1
Hi,

I am planning a trip to Japan around the end of the month and would like to cycle around the country for a bit. In the past, I've brought my bike on the plane, which was pretty fun overall but really less than ideal. (Getting the bike on the plane was a nuisance, the bike got some minor damage, and I ended up having to ride from Narita to Tokyo in the snow with a shirt, no gloves and a large backpack... Mr. Planning I ain't).

I am hoping I could get some advice to avoid a repeat of that "experience".

This time, I am considering a different arrangement. As I will be there for 2-3 months, I would like to buy a low-to-mid-range road bike and resell it a couple months later for more or less for the same price (+/- 10k yen). Budget would be around 30-40,000 yen and I am looking at 1-3,000km at leisurely pace, so I don't need anything really fancy, just a solid road bike in good condition.

Does it sound realistic? How easy is it to sell a second hand bike within a week or two?

I also considered renting a bike, but the prices I have found online are ridiculous (at 3500 yen/day, it doesn't take long to exceed the retail value of the bike).

Thanks in advance for any advice you can provide.

Cheers,
Sylvain
 

GrantT

Maximum Pace
Oct 2, 2012
1,612
1,192
143
Setagaya
#2
Not very realistic. You would be better off bringing your bike but planning the journey better. This will mean a better way to get your bike on the plane, then a better way to reach wherever you are staying from Narita. That would involve getting a bike bag and taking it on the train (link).
 
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theBlob

Bokeh master
Sep 28, 2011
2,863
1,450
129
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#3
Yeah you can send your bag from the airport if you like for about 1000yen. Then you could at least be rid of all your gear if you wanted to ride to Tokyo. I agree with bringing your bike. Selling will possibly be a problem particularly if you are a big guy.
 

Sylver

Warming-Up
Jul 9, 2015
6
0
1
42
#4
Not very realistic. You would be better off bringing your bike but planning the journey better. This will mean a better way to get your bike on the plane, then a better way to reach wherever you are staying from Narita. That would involve getting a bike bag and taking it on the train (link).
Thanks for the tip. What part is not realistic? Finding a bike at the price? Or reselling it fast enough?
 

GrantT

Maximum Pace
Oct 2, 2012
1,612
1,192
143
Setagaya
#5
Yes (both).

Have you checked the classifieds section of this site yet?

There is one person I know of who ordered a cheap road bike from wiggle (60,000) for their stay here of less than a year and by chance found someone else on this board to pass the bike onto. To do that you need a Japanese address to send the bike to, to find someone to sell onto, and to extend your budget.
 
Last edited:

George5

Maximum Pace
Oct 16, 2014
385
141
73
46
#6
If the frame size is average Japanese size you can buy and sell on Auction sites and get and pay market prices. You just need someone that can do the Japanese part of of the process for you if you can't yourself. Selling on auction is real simple and you can do it over any time period you want. What size frame do you ride? What's your budget for two or three months riding?
 

Sylver

Warming-Up
Jul 9, 2015
6
0
1
42
#7
If the frame size is average Japanese size you can buy and sell on Auction sites and get and pay market prices. You just need someone that can do the Japanese part of of the process for you if you can't yourself. Selling on auction is real simple and you can do it over any time period you want. What size frame do you ride? What's your budget for two or three months riding?
I am looking at a 52-54 frame. Not sure how common that is in Japan. Which auction site would you recommend?

Budget' s not finalized yet, but I'd like to keep the bike-related costs to under 20,000 yen.
 

Sylver

Warming-Up
Jul 9, 2015
6
0
1
42
#8
Yes (both).

Have you checked the classifieds section of this site yet?

There is one person I know of who ordered a cheap road bike from wiggle (60,000) for their stay here of less than a year and by chance found someone else on this board to pass the bike onto. To do that you need a Japanese address to send the bike to, to find someone to sell onto, and to extend your budget.
I had a look at the classified section, but there doesn't seem to be a lot of classified traffic and my overall impression was that members were trading somewhat higher end bikes, and even so there were a few older entries in my price range. If this is the main option to resell the bike, it certainly doesn't seem realistic, but I was on the assumption there were good auction sites in Japan. (Can't read Japanese but once in Japan, I have a few friends who can help me out)

Looking at http://global.rakuten.com/en/category/207950/?h=3 there seems to be quite a few options in my price range. Nothing fancy, but I am not a serious rider and I am not looking for performance. Just a solid road bike in good condition that can handle a bit of mileage.

Assuming bikes can be found at that price in Japanese shops, how hard would it be to resell one 10,000 yen cheaper after 2 months of ridding?
 

theBlob

Bokeh master
Sep 28, 2011
2,863
1,450
129
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#11
You will have to sign up and verify an address and register a credit card. Basically you can't sell on there without a residence that can be verified.
 

jdd

Maximum Pace
Hardest Crash
Jul 26, 2008
2,511
639
133
Kanazawa
#12
I've been watching this thread. I think you should bring your own bike. There'll be some fees, but it will be your bike, one that you know and are familiar with. (that fits well enough for 2k km and a couple months of riding.

Selling will be a hassle, and as for bikes on the cheaper side (30-40,000), I don't think would be worth the time/trouble/uncertainty of selling.

Your initial complaints are solvable. Pack your bike better to prevent damage. Use a luggage service to send your gear (heavy backpack) from Narita into town. Then you can choose--if your bike is packed well, ship it, too, or assemble it and ride into town. (And heat, sun, and rain will be the challenge, since any snow is quite a few months away.)

You'll need a Tokyo address and phone number for shipping, e.g., name & address of hotel with their phone number.