What Hotel Chain Has the Most Properties in Japan?

Choice Hotel Locations in Japan
Choice Hotel Locations in Japan

I know what you’re thinking.  Why would you go to Japan to stay in an American chain hotel?

Japan has capsule hotels, love hotels, and traditional Ryokan inns.

So why in the world would you want to stay in an American chain hotel?

Two words:  free nights.

I’ve read so many reviews from points and miles bloggers who have stayed at the Park Hyatt Hotel in Tokyo with “two free nights” they got from their Chase Hyatt credit card.  That place seems a bit over-blogged.

What about the Imperial Hotel designed by Frank Lloyd Wright?  Now that’s a place I would like to stay (though I never would, because I am too cheap.)

One reason you might choose a franchised hotel might be to economize.  If you could earn free nights by accumulating points, that could cut the costs of your vacation.  I’ve written before about how we are planning a rail-based trip, and that hotels near train stations would be ideal.

My guidebook, Japan by Rail, mentions a number of Choice Hotels that are directly across from railroad stations, and many others that are a ten minute walk away.  

With all the hype about the Park Hyatt Tokyo, I thought I would take a look at other chain hotels that you can stay at for points, and how many properties they each have in Japan.  The search tool at AwardMapper.com was tremendously helpful in this regard.

Here’s what I found:

Club Carlson:         1

Japanese Breakfast at Choice Hotel
Japanese Breakfast at Choice Hotel

Hilton:                    8

Accor Hotels:       10

Hyatt                     10

IHG:                      11

Marriott:              14

Best Western:     15

Starwood:            15

Choice:                47

Choice Hotels Has More Hotels in Japan Than Any Other U.S. Chain

Are you surprised?  Choice Hotels has four times as many properties in Japan as Hyatt does., and three times as many as the nearest competitors, Starwood and Best Western.  Apparently, Choice has a ton of properties in Scandinavia, too.

To be sure the Comfort Inn is no Park Hyatt.  The Japanese Comfort Inns all look like 2 star hotels that cater to business people.  The rooms are quite small; but hey, this is Japan, you’d expect small rooms.  The prices are reasonable, as are the points redemptions.  For 38 of the 47 hotels, you need 8,000 points for a free night.  What makes these hotels especially convenient is the free breakfast, free wifi, guest laundry, and small business center.

Get 32,000 Bonus Points with the Choice Privileges Visa Card Equal 4 Free Nights

Choice Privileges Credit Card Bonus Points
Choice Privileges Credit Card Bonus Points

How can you get 8,000 points?

The easiest way is by opening The Choice Privileges® Visa® Card.  This is a no annual fee travel rewards credit card that pays 8,000 points after your first purchase, and 24,000 points after a one night stay at a Choice Privileges location.  That’s enough for four free nights at most Comfort Inns in Japan.

Here’s the thing:  you can burn Choice Privileges points at hotels in Japan, but you will not earn points for your paid stays.

This is the points earning structure for The Choice Privileges® Visa® Card:  
  • 15 per eligible $1 spent at over 4,200 Choice Privileges locations
  • 5 points per eligible $1 on additional Choice Privileges points or Choice Hotels gift card purchases
  • 2 points per eligible $1 spent on everyday purchases
Cardmembers will get Automatic Elite Gold Status, which offers:
  • Ability to book free nights 50 days in advance instead of 30 days
  • Every time you earn points for eligible stays, Choice Privileges gives you a 10% point bonus

To be sure there are more generous offers available, but those are usually for cards with a high annual fee.

The Choice Privileges® Visa® Card has no annual fee, not in the first year, nor in any subsequent year.  A card with no annual fee is one that you can hold for years and years, which will improve one of the important components of your credit score, the average age of your accounts.

What are the Limitations?

Comfort Hotel Japan
Comfort Inn Japan

There are some limitations. Your first paid stay must be in a U.S. participating hotel.

You will earn only 10 points per dollar at the lower end Choice properties:  MainStay Suites®, Suburban Extended Stay®, Econo Lodge® and Rodeway Inn®.

“Eligible stays”exclude discounted rates or stays booked through third parties.

You do not earn points for stays in these countries:  Brazil, China, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, India, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway and Sweden and including Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Papua New Guinea and Fiji.

See www.choiceprivileges.com for details.

Comfort Inns (part of Choice Hotels) in Japan

Here’s the list of Choice properties in Japan, all Comfort Inns, where you can stay for 8,000 points a night.

Akita

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 3-23 Senshukubota-machi, Akita, 010-0874

Fukuoka

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 2-1-1 Hakata-Ekimae, Fukuoka, 812-0011

Fukushima

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 2-2-22 Hohatcho, Fukushima, 963-8811

Gifu

8,000 Points

Hakodate

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 16-3 Wakamatsu-cho, Hakodate, 040-0063

Himeji

8,000 Points

Hiroshima

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 3-17 Komachi Naka-ku, Hiroshima, 730-0041
  • Comfort Inn – 3-7-9 Otemachi Naka-ku, Hiroshima, 730-0051

Kitakyushu

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 2-6-21 Asano, Kokurakita-ku, Kitakyushu, 802-0001

Kitami

8,000 Points

Kobe

8,000 Points

  • Quality – 6-1 Minatojima-Nakamachi,, Kobe, 650-0046

Kochi

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 2-2-12 Kita-Hommachi, Kochi, 780-0056

Komatsu

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 2-60 Nagasaki-machi, Komatsu, 923-0004

Kumamoto

8,000 Points

Nagano

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 1-12-4 Minami-Chitose, Nagano, 380-0823

Nagasaki

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 8-17 Kabashima-machi, Nagasaki, 850-0034

Nagoya

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 1-16-10, Nishiki, Naka-ku, Nagoya, 460-0003

Nara

8,000 Points

Narita

8,000 Points

Niigata

8,000 Points

Okayama

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 1-1-13 Marunouchi, Okayama, 700-0823

Osaka

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 1-15-15 Higashi-Shinsaibashi, Osaka, 542-0083

Saga

8,000 Points

Sakai

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 1-5-1 Ryujimbashi-cho, Sakai, 590-0972

Sapporo

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – Minami 3 Nishi 9, Chuo-ku, Sapporo, 060-0063

Sendai

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 134-5 Nakake-cho Miyagino-ku, Sendai, 983-0864
  • Comfort Inn – 3-5-11 Chuo, Aoba-ku, Sendai, 980-0021

Suzuka

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 14-26, Shiroko-Ekimae, Suzuka, 510-0241

Tendo

8,000 Points

Tokoname

8,000 Points

Tokyo

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 1-6-12 Shirakawa, Koto-ku, Tokyo, 135-0021
  • Comfort Inn – 11-2 Kanda Higashimatsushita, Tokyo, 101-0042
  • Comfort Inn – 1-10-11 Nihombashi Bakurocho, Tokyo, 103-0002

Tomakomai

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 3-7-18 Asahi-machi, Tomakomai, 053-0018

Toyama

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 1-3-2 Takara-machi, Toyama, 930-0007

Toyokawa

8,000 Points

Yamagata

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 1-3-12 Kasumi-cho, Yamagata, 990-0039

Yokohama

8,000 Points

  • Comfort Inn – 3-33 Sumiyoshi-cho, Naka-ku, Yokohama, 231-0013

There are also a number of Choice hotels that cost 10,000 or 12,000 points, in these locations:  

Kure                                  12,000 points

Nigata                               12,000 points

Maebashi                         12,000 points

Hachinohe                       12,000 points

Hikone                              12,000 points

Kariya                                12,000 points

Hamamatsu                      12,000 points

Sin Yamaguchi                 10,000 points

Kurosakei – Kitakyushu  10,000 points

Would you consider opening The Choice Privileges® Visa® Card if you were planning a trip to Japan or Scandinavia?  

Click here to compare current rewards credit card offers.

2 thoughts on “What Hotel Chain Has the Most Properties in Japan?

    • The Comfort Inn chain in Japan seems about the equivalent of the Japanese business chain Toyoko that I wrote about earlier. It seems like a bland 2 star chain, but if the location is convenient, and you can get four free nights, that works for me! The other surprise is how many Best Western hotels there are in Europe.

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