Buses and Taxis
All licensed commercial vehicles including buses and taxies have green license plates with letters and numbers in white.
If you see any hired vehicle with a white license plate with green lettering, they are operating without licenses.
> Local Buses バス
In Tokyo, Osaka and some other large cities, buses serve as a secondary means of public transportation, complementing the train and subway networks. In cities with less dense train networks like Kyoto, buses are the main means of public transportation. Buses also serve smaller towns, the countryside and national parks.
Most local buses are operated by one driver only. You pay the fare as you enter the bus. Most local buses charge one price per ride.
> Highway Buses 高速バス
Highway buses provide alternative means of long distance transportation to rail and air. So-called Highway Buses operates between cities like Tokyo, Nagoya, Kyoto and Osaka overnight at very reasonable prices. On top of the savings, you will be able to skip one night at the hotel. Buses are clean and comfortable and some are equipped with flat beds.
> Shuttle Buses シャトルバス
You see many shuttle buses at any international airports. Those buses provides reasonable price transportation to and from airport to destinations like hotels and train stations. For instance, the shuttle bus from Narita Airport to Tokyo Station runs between 1,100 ~ 3,300 yen depending on the company. Shuttle bus fare includes toll charges as well. There is no tipping for this service.
> Tour Buses ツアーバス
If you wish to tour specific places, there usually are tour buses to take you there and back. There are many tourists that can provide you with the tour bus services. Ask your travel agent or look online to find the tour bus companies. There are tour buses operating with English and other languages as well.
> Taxis タクシー
Taxis in Japan are very clean with most cabs open left rear door by the drivers. Taxi fairs start around 400 yen to 800 per the first 2km. Because of the heavy traffics in metro Tokyo and other cities, taxis may not be the fastest transportation. In large cites with a good subway system people tend to travel by subway to save time and money. If you ask a taxi to use toll roads, the toll will be added to your total charge. No tipping is needed for a taxi ride.