Tokyo has two international airports, both are one hour distance by train from the conference venue.
The Narita Airport is located in the east of the Tokyo city.
There are mainly three ways from the airport to the central Tokyo area.
- By Keisei railway trains:
If you directly comes to Ueno area (the area UTokyo is in), then this is the first choice.
If you can pay around 2,500yen, then after arriving the airport goes down to the underground area where the Keisei station locates, and purchase a ticket for Skyliner. This will take you directly to Ueno station in around 40 min.
If you hope to save your money, then, at the Keisei station, just purchase a normal ticket to the Ueno station, which costs around 1,300 yen, and will take around 80–90 min.
If you hope to go to other stations in the central Tokyo area, a good way is to get off the trains (either Skyliner or normal trains) at Nippori station, where you can change to JR East railway trains.
- By JR East railway train:
If you can afford around 3,000 yen, and also hope to go to a place other than Ueno area, then another choice is to use N’EX (Narita Express) operated by JR East railway company. This gives you a direct and convenient way to some major places in the central Tokyo, including Tokyo (station), Shibuya, Shinjuku, Ikebukuro in 60–90min depending on your destination (the last three locates in the west area in the central Tokyo; see the map in About Tokyo city section of this site).
It is also possible to save your money by using normal trains of JR East, but in that case, we feel Keisei is better both in riding time and fee.
- By airport bus:
Depending on the destination (from the airport), using airport bus will also be a good way. See Public Bus page in the Narita Airport HP. It offers various destinations inside/outside Tokyo (buses are run by several companies, but in the above site you can search all buses). For example, it connects Narita airport and the Tokyo station in 60min by 1,000 yen.
Note that there are two terminals: 1, 2 in the Narita airport. Carefully consult the above links depending on your arriving terminal and first destination (contact the local organizing committee if you find some difficulty).
In order to get to the airport from the central Tokyo, simply follow the instruction in the reversed way. Be careful if you decide to use (non-reserved) normal trains to the airport, the train might be very heavily crowded depending on the day and time (you might hope to read about Rush hours in Tokyo), and getting on a train with a large baggage will be an extremely challenging task.
The Haneda airport locates in the south area of Tokyo, along the Tokyo bay.
There are also three ways to get to the central area.
- By airport bus:
Since there is no trains with reserved seats for tourists (with large baggages) available from Haneda airport, maybe the best way for you is to use airport buses. See the Buses page of the Haneda airport HP. For example, you can get to the Tokyo station by 1,000 yen/ 60min, Shinjuku station by 1,200 yen/ 40 min.
- By Tokyo monorail:
Still, if you hope to use trains, a good way to get to the central area is to use Tokyo Monorail, which connects the airport and the central area in 13min (at minimum) with 500yen. At the Hamamatsucho terminal, you can exchange to Yamanote line (by JR East railway company) by which you can get to Ueno area.
- By Keikyu railway train:
You can also take a Keikyu train, which brings you to Shinagawa station in 400yen/15min, where you can exchange to Yamanote line mentioned above.
Haneda airport has three terminals: one international (the one you may use), and two domestic terminals.
To the airport, simply follow the instruction in the reversed way.
Some other suggestions
Right after arriving at Japan, you might hope to do the followings.
- Exchanging money.
There are currency exchange services at airports.
- Purchasing an electric money card.
As described in About Tokyo city section, electric cards are extremely useful in Tokyo for moving around and buying things. If you get a card at the airport and charge some money there, you can basically forget using vending machines at stations when you use trains/metros.