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Japan 2023: Day 14

Our final day in Japan has sadly arrived. After waking up we headed out to Denny's in a throwback to our first trip to Tokyo in 2016. We walked around the Hama-rikyū Gardens and grabbed our final Blue Bottle coffee before checking out at 2pm.

The greatest thing about having Hamamatsuchō as your home station during your trip to Tokyo is that it is always so easy to get to the airport via the Tokyo Monorail. A quick 25 minute ride, with ample room for our luggage, and we're at Haneda's International Terminal.

Of course none of Air Canada's check-in decks were open and a massive line was already snaking all over the terminal. Thankfully we had priority boarding so when they finally did open we were through pretty quickly. Clearing security was just as painless. Amazingly we didn't have to take any of our electronics out of our bags which made things super easy.

A little over an hour after arriving we were posted up at the ANA Lounge. Three hours later we headed to board our flight only to be told that it was delayed an hour. But once we were on the plane everything was smooth sailing and 13 hours later we landed in Toronto at 5:30pm. Picking up our luggage was a breeze and by 6pm we were requesting an Uber home.

This was where the first reverse-culture shock of the trip hit us. It's funny when people say Toronto is a world class city when there is basically no good transport to and from our one international airport. The first Uber we got refused to drive us home because he didn't want to head into downtown Toronto because of the traffic. So we ended up taking the Union Pearson Express to Bloor Station and then an Uber from there back to our apartment. That still took over an hour and cost more than probably every single subway ride we took in Tokyo combined.

So that's it. Another trip to Japan in the books. I think our previous trips were more enjoyable. I really wish we were able to experience more Japanese food. But from a day-to-day living perspective Japan is so far ahead of North America. If I could I would easily spend 3-6 months there a year, or potentially even move to the outskirts of Tokyo or Fukuoka. They have such easy access to the things that I enjoy and their public transit is an absolute dream. The concept of basically never having to check a schedule because trains run so frequently is incredible.