Never thought I would be back to my ancestral homeland, but the military definitely has it surprises. One of the greatest Benefits of being stationed in Okinawa is the ability to stay for over the 90 days in Japan. This includes all of Japan’s 43 prefectures. While many foreign visitors have to go through a lot of paperwork and lawyers to even get a visa to exceed their 90 day tourist visa, those who fall under SOFA (Status of Forces Agreement) can stay 2 to 3 years on Active Duty orders. For many this is a once in a life time opportunity to have time to live in the land of the rising sun uninterrupted!
Here are the major routes and hubs for ANA in Japan (useful for the Experience Japan Fare)
The other benefit is the SCRA (Service Members Civil Relief act) Which covers a lot of different benefits to active duty, but the greatest benefit is the reimbursement of credit card annual membership fees for some companies such as American Express and Barclays. This gives you many opportunities for earning membership points for free travel.
Not a very large are when you overlay it with the ease coast of the United States. (thanks mapfrappe.com)
It is also key to know that the Japanese being a country of many small islands, rely on air transport more than other nations. So there are many top notch airports that make air travel very easy! This blog is some of my many trips I have taken to travel in Japan on these benefits!