Japan has three main types of hotel: standard hotels (generally expensive, so we'll include luxury hotels in this category), business hotels, and "love hotels." Business hotels have cramped rooms but are generally fairly inexpensive (say around 6000 - 6800 per night). "Love hotels" rent rooms by the hour and are designed for the purposes you can probably imagine (note that you must supply your own partner!). I include this category because I've been told that, if you check in late at night (after 9 p.m. or so), they can actually be cheaper than a business hotel - so keep this option in mind if you get stuck for a place to spend the night.

Recently there has been a vast improvement in the amenities offered by some business hotels. Some of them now offer a free buffet breakfast in the morning, and many of the business hotels in major cities even include free broadband Internet service right in the room - usually with an Ethernet plug on the wall into which you simply plug in your LAN cable and surf away. Sometimes you need to ask for a cable or modem at the front desk. If you decide to stay in a hotel and want Internet access, be sure to check to see if they offer this service. The two leaders in this category of net-savvy business hotel are Toyoko Inn (@@@) and the new Super Hotel chain (@@@). Both have hotels nationwide.

For other reference materials that you may find useful in route planning, see RESOURCES.