Car Hire from Fukuoka Airport
Fukuoka Airport is the main airport serving Kyushu, Japan’s southernmost island blessed with beautiful scenery, volcanic mountains and spectacular coastline. The island also has a great road system so hiring a car from Fukuoka Airport is an easy way to get around.
Where to hire a car at Fukuoka Airport
A number of car hire companies operate at Fukuoka Airport. These include Toyota, Nissan, Nippon, Yamae and IDEX Auto. Reservations for all companies can be made at the Information Desks located in the arrivals halls of all international and domestic terminals.
Petrol Stations near Fukuoka Airport
If you need to return your hire car with a full tank of petrol, you’ll find a petrol station just 10 minutes from the airport. It’s situated on route 3, heading to the airport from Fukuoka centre.
Driving around Fukuoka Airport
There are a number of major roads servicing Fukuoka Airport. Route 3 runs close to the airport terminal and heads into Fukuoka city centre and northeast towards Munakata and Nakama. From the airport, it’s also easy to jump on the city ring road which connects to various routes around this southern part of Japan.
To drive in Japan you need to apply for an International Driving Permit before you leave the UK. This costs £5.50 and you can apply to either the RAC, the AA or at a local post office. Your permit will be valid for up to a year from the date of issue.
Driving in Japan is on the left, like in the UK. Roads are well-maintained and most major road signs are in both Japanese and English. Things to watch out for include cyclists riding on the wrong side of the road and taxi drivers stopping suddenly.
Getting to your destination
When you hire a car from Fukuoka Airport, you’ll find lots of great destinations nearby. Here are a few of them:
Fukuoka is the largest city on Kyushu and has long held national significance as a port city and trading point. The city straddles the Naka River and is home to incredible architecture, art and cuisine. There are temples, street food markets, beautiful parklands and a local baseball team too.
It takes around 25 minutes to drive from Fukuoka Airport to Fukuoka city. There are a variety of routes available but the most direct takes route 45 north, then the 574 and then the 607. The majority of Fukuoka is laid out of a grid system but it isn’t uniform enough to rely upon for navigational purposes. A good map or satellite navigation system would be very useful.
Dazaifu is an ancient town established back in the 7th century. The city of Fukuoka has grown out towards it meaning it now lies on the outskirts of the city. Visitors to the area will find temples and shrines, including the famous Dazaifu Tenmangu Shrine, and the huge Kyushu National Museum which has changing exhibitions on Japanese history dating back to the Prehistoric period.
Dazaifu is about 25 minutes’ drive from Fukuoka Airport. Drivers should take route 45 south and then pick up the 574. There is a toll booth along the way and alternate routes if you wish to avoid it.
Kitakyushu is Kyushu’s northernmost city and the gateway to Honshu. It’s a relatively new city with an industrial history and a vibrant working port. Visitors can marvel at the Kawachi Wisteria Garden, head to the Kokura Castle, ride the rollercoasters at Space World amusement park or learn all about manga at the Kitakyushu Manga Museum.
It takes just over an hour to reach Kitakyushu from Fukuoka Airport. Drivers should take route 45 southbound, then route 91 before picking up the Kyushu Expressway toll road. Like Fukuoka, Kitakyushu has a road network on a slightly irregular grid system and there are plenty of car parks around the centre.