As our name implies, we're all about trip preparation, and believe that when it comes to your Japan trip, a little research goes far. Take a few hours and work your way through these, and you'll be on your way.

A Tokyo know-before-you-go from the Roads and Kingdoms team

Chances are you're at least passing through Tokyo (and if not, why not?). This is one of those great travel pieces that starts to give you a sense of the city- helpful when you're thinking about where to stay and what to book.

Etiquette tips from The Culture Trip

You're not going to quickly pick up all the ins-and-outs of staying on the correct side of Japanese etiquette, but this is a great primer. I would add a twelfth point- if you have a cold, pick up a paper mask and do not blow your nose in public. I figured this one out the hard way.

Things we love: Sake

Sake is always a highlight of our trips to Japan, but it's a little overwhelming to get started with. Here's a breakdown of the basics, so that you can better enjoy a tipple or two, plus some ideas for where to go and imbibe.

The Eater's take on essential Tokyo restaurants

If you managed to eat at all 38 of these restaurants, that would be a trip very, very well spent. Just trying one or two will be a great asset to any stay. This is a great and complete guide, well sorted by budget- you'll be amazed at the number of low-cost Michelin-starred joints!

Using your JR Rail Pass

If you've decided to buy a JR Pass (after making sure that you actually need one) then you're set to enjoy up to three weeks of zipping about on shinkansen. Once you figure out how to book of course. Here's how to get going.

Yup, you need to know earthquake basics before you go

Take some time and review this sheet before you go- this is also one we'd recommend printing out- trust us, if the worst happens, you'll appreciate knowing what to listen and look out for so that you can evacuate safely!

The Tokyo Cheapo guide to renting a car in Japan

We didn't rent a car until our fourth trip, and wish we had done it sooner! It was an easy experience, surprisingly cheap, and a fun way to explore. Tokyo Cheapo have made it simple to understand with these handy tips.

Getting to grips with takuhaibin luggage forwarding

I've written about packing, but the fact is, sometimes you just don't want the hassle of luggage. Perhaps you're doing a hike or two, headed somewhere just overnight, or you've made some bulky purchases, takuhaibin is the answer.