The fourth busiest airport in Japan and gateway to a beautiful city.
Fukuoka Airport is the best international airport to travel to or from western Japan. Airports near Osaka and Tokyo may be bigger and offer a wider range of flights, but trips to Fukuoka Airport are most often affordable year round.
Located at the top of Japan’s southern island of Kyushu, Fukuoka used to be one of the ports where Japanese sailors would venture off to Korea. The airport, the fourth-busiest in the country, is easily accessible by public transportation, as it is only 5 minutes away from Hakata station. It is also a good point for international flights to get to Seoul Incheon Airport, for example.
The majority of flights from Fukuoka are domestic, with a lot of flight routes to Haneda or Naha airports. Though, you can travel all around Japan for really cheap from this one starting point. Flights to Tokyo can be as low as ¥11,000, or you can fly up north to Sapporo for around ¥8,000 if you are using budget Low-Cost Carrier airlines such as Peach or Jet Star Japan.
Once you get to the airport you are not out of entertainment options. The airport is full of duty-free shops and restaurants to hang around in until your flight boards. At the international terminal, you can buy perfume and cosmetics a, or just have a nice meal at one of the western or Japanese-style restaurants. At the domestic terminal, many shops sell local specialties ranging from cakes and biscuits to Hakata ningyo, traditional Hakata style dolls.
There is free wifi in the airport if you need some last-minute flight information or just want to pass the time. If you have any questions while at the airport you can seek assistance at the information desk. The staff offer help in English and Chinese if you are not confident in your Japanese. There are two desks in the domestic terminal on the first floor that are open from 7:45 a.m. There are two more in the International terminal, one on the first floor the other on the third. The international desks open at 7:30 a.m and all desks close at 8 p.m.
Before or after your flight, why not make a short stop to explore the city of Hakata? Hakata is the home of tonkotsu (pork bone) ramen, as well as, the sweet local treat called torimon. Torimon is a small dumpling filled with a soft mix of white anko (bean) butter and cream. This sweet snack is also a great idea for omiyage (Japanese souvenirs). You can buy them freshly made at Hakata station or at the airport if you are in a rush.
For more on flights and transport in Japan, check out our Japan 101 guide.