You arrive at the airport, in an unfamiliar country, with people speaking an unfamiliar language, you can’t even read the signs.
When I arrive in a new country I have a list that repeats itself over and over: ‘get some money from an ATM, buy a Sim Card, get to the hotel … get some money, buy a Sim Card, get to the hotel…’ and over and over.
To me arriving in a new country while traveling is pure stress, and the excitement and euphoria of exploring a new part of the world can only start once I completed my list.
Getting local currency, being connected to the internet and sitting in my hotel room.
If you are similar to me and are planning on arriving at Nagoya airport, this post will help you with one of the three problems: How to get from the airport to your hotel.
After reading this post you will know the different options to get from Nagoya airport to Nagoya station or your hotel in the city.
Let’s find the option that suits you best.
Chubu Centrair International Airport
When I talk about Nagoya Airport I am talking about the Chubu Centrair International Airport with the airport code NGO.
Other commonly used names for Chubu Centrair International Airport are Chubu Airport, Nagoya International Airport, Centrair, Centrair Nagoya, Chubu International Airport, Nagoya Chubu Airport, Chubu Centrair Airport, or Chubu Nagoya Airport and any other variation of these words. Just know that they all mean the same airport.
There is a second airport in Nagoya, formerly known as Nagoya Airport (until 2005 when Chubu Centrair International Airport was inaugurated), it now has the official name Nagoya Airfield or Komaki Airport and it only serves domestic flights.
Where is Chubu Airport
Nagoya Airport lies on an artificial island 35 kilometers south of Nagoya city. The airport is conveniently connected to the city by a railway line but there are other ways to get to the city as well, such as buses, taxis and private transfer services.
By Meitetsu Train from Nagoya Airport to Nagoya Train Station
Chubu International Airport has very convenient public transport connecting it with the city in the form of the Meitetsu line.
μSky (pronounced MuSky like the greek letter) Limited Express trains stop at only 2 stations before arriving at Nagoya Station, they are the fastest trains, taking only 28 minutes to reach Nagoya, and require special reserved seat tickets. The price for the μSky is 1230 yen (12 US dollars) but it has the advantage of guaranteeing a place to sit.
Meitetsu Rapid Limited Express and Meitetsu Limited Express trains have reserved cars like the μSky Limited Express but also normal cars where you do not have to pay extra for your seat reservation.
The trains stop at more stations than the μSky and will, therefore, take slightly longer, around 35 minutes to reach Nagoya Station.
The price for a non-reserved seat is 870 yen (8.5 US dollars) and if you are unlucky you might have to stand the whole way. Just note that Nagoya Airport is the first stop of the train so the cars will arrive empty giving you a good chance to get a seat.
There are also Rapid Express, Express, Semi Express, and Local trains. They only have normal cars costing also 870 yen (8.5 US dollars). The difference here is just the number of stops the train makes on the way to Nagoya which will result in longer travel time.
The train operation time is from around 5:30 in the morning to 11:30 at night. If you arrive outside of these operation times you will have to find another form of transport to the city or wait at the airport.
You can buy your train tickets at the big arrival hall at Centrair Airport, just be advised that you cannot pay with a credit card for your train ticket, only cash.
If you do not want the hassle of having to buy a ticket when you arrive, you can buy your ticket very conveniently in advance online on klook.com. You will get a voucher which you can exchange for your train ticket at the airport.
This also has the advantage that it is a little bit cheaper than the regular price: The μSky ticket costs only 1150 yen instead of 1230 yen and the normal train ticket costs 800 yen instead of 870 yen!
By Airport Limousine Bus to Downtown Nagoya from Nagoya Airport
If you want to go anywhere beside Nagoya Station you might want to check out the Meitetsu Nagoya Airport Limousin Bus which makes stops at some of the best hotels in the city (Hilton Nagoya, Nagoya Kanko Hotel, Nagoya Tokyu Hotel) as well as other areas in downtown Nagoya such as Fushimi, Nishiki, and Sakae before arriving at Nagoya Station Meitetsu Bus Terminal.
If you don’t know where you will stay yet, this post will help you figure out where to stay in Nagoya.
You do not need an advanced reservation to take the Centrair limousine bus and you can get off at the hotel stops even if you are not a guest at the respective hotel.
The bus costs 1300 yen for adults and 650 yen for children and takes about 1 hour to 1.5 hours depending on where in Nagoya you want to get off.
Buses run hourly from 8:15 a.m. to 10:15 p.m. The detailed bus schedule is as follows:
|Chubu Centrair International Airport||08:15 a.m.||... (hourly)...||10:15 p.m.|
|Nagoya Tokyu Hotel||09:05 a.m.||... (hourly)...||11:05 p.m.|
|Sakae||09:10 a.m.||... (hourly)...||11:10 p.m.|
|Nishiki Dori Hommachi||09:13 a.m.||... (hourly)...||11:13 p.m.|
|Nagoya Kanko Hotel||09:16 a.m.||... (hourly)...||11:16 p.m.|
|Hilton Nagoya||09:23 a.m.||... (hourly)...||11:23 p.m.|
|Fushimi-cho||09:26 a.m.||... (hourly)...||11:26 p.m.|
|Nagoya Station Meitetsu Bus Center||09:33 a.m.||... (hourly)...||11:33 p.m.|
There are 2 buses operated by Nagoya Bus Co. that run at 2:20 a.m. and 5:40 a.m. for those people arriving in the middle of the night.
These buses only go to Nagoya Station West Gate and cost 1400 yen (cash only).
If you do not want to wait for up to 3 hours for your next bus you need to find another alternative like a private transfer (more information below).
By Taxi from Nagoya Airport to the City
A Taxi is the most expensive option to get from Chubu Airport to Nagoya Station.
While it will get you to the city in only about 45 minutes (faster than the bus, but slower than the train) your very comfortable and convenient ride will cost you around 15.000 yen (150 US dollars).
By Private Airport Transfer from Nagoya Airport to Your Hotel
If you are thinking about taking a taxi from the airport to the city, you might as well book your private airport transfer in advance.
It is essentially the same as a taxi but you do not have the hassle of hailing one yourself and explaining where you want to go. This will already all be done at the time of booking on klook.com.
If you are a group of 3 or more people and you think taking the train or bus will be too inconvenient a private airport transfer is the way to go because a standard taxi will probably not have the capacity to fit you and your luggage in one car. There are different options for up to 8 people available.
A private airport transfer is also the best option if you arrive late at night between 11:30 p.m. and 5:30 a.m. when the trains and buses aren’t in operation.
Nagoya Airport Car Rental
Your last option is a car rental directly at Chubu International Airport. You can pick up your car and drive to Nagoya yourself. This only makes sense if you are planning on exploring more of the country by car.
Be advised that in most cases you will need an international drivers license to drive in Japan and you can only get this in your own country before you depart. Check the regulations for your country here.
Parking in Nagoya city is limited and therefore expensive, not as expensive as Tokyo but it still can burn a hole in your travel budget. It is best to call your hotel in advances whether free or paid parking is available and how much it costs. Most major roads in Japan are toll roads and driving in Japan can get expensive quite quickly.
It might even be cheaper to forget about taking a car and opting to explore the country by train.
The Japan Rail Pass is a great way to see a lot of the country for a fixed price. Check out the full article about the Japan Rail Pass before making a definite decision. Or book your Japan Rail Pass here today.
The cheapest ways to get from Chubu Cetrair International Airport to Nagoya Station or your hotel are the Meitetsu train line or the limousine bus. Only in case you are looking for more comfort or traveling outside the operating hours is it advisable to book a private transfer to get to your destination in Nagoya.
Here are some other posts you might be interested in:
- The best luxury hotels in Nagoya
- Hotels near Nagoya station for every budget
- Things to do in Nagoya for first-timers
- The perfect one day Nagoya itinerary
- Visit Atsuta Jingu the most sacred place in Nagoya
- Day trips from Nagoya you really shouldn’t miss
If you are a foodie check out the Nagoya Food Guide or read these posts:
- Where to eat Hitsumabushi in Nagoya
- Komeda’s Coffee – a staple of Nagoya
- Where to try the best Kishimen in Nagoya
You might also want to check out the Nagoya Meshi Food Tour we organize daily in Nagoya. You will get to try local foods and learn a lot about the local food culture in Nagoya and Japan in general. Find out more!
In love with Japan and its amazing food, Lena wants to share her passion with the world. That’s why she started Nagoya Foodie. To teach about Nagoya, her adoptive home online through blog posts and offline through unique food tours.