GA Flying in Japan

5 Replies

GA Flying in Japan

Posted by Dave Rice on Aug 17, 2017 9:27 am

I'm going to Japan on business in a couple weeks and since I'm going to be there over a couple weekends, I was wondering if anyone could recommend a place to go flying.  I don't have time to reciprocate my certificate, so I'd be happy just flying with a Japanese instructor pilot, or maybe just as a tourist sitting the right seat.  Based upon my other reading, they won't allow me to control the aircraft until and unless I got some type of certificate reciprocation, which I'm not going to seek.  I'll be in Tokyo, but could transit if necessary to a more suitable GA airport.

Just looking to "see the sights" from the air, and if they allow me to do some of the flying, great.  If not, I'll just work the cameras!
  • Bookmark

Re: GA Flying in Japan

Posted by Stephen Goetsch on Aug 21, 2017 5:26 am

You might try the US airbase in Atsugi, near Yokohama.  I believe there is a flying club there, flying 172s, American instructors, N-registered airplanes, so it is likely legal to fly them.  But I have no idea what restrictions may apply, I have never tried to do it.

Re: GA Flying in Japan

Posted by Jon Gandy on Aug 22, 2017 9:40 am

Hello David.

AOPA has many branches around the world, so the best suggestion would be to reach out to AOPA Japan.  You can reach them at any of the information below.

320, 1-1-1 Todoroki Setagaya-ku
Tokyo 158-0082 Japan

Issei Imahashi, President
Noriko Hatanaka, Secretary

We also have a few inquiries out for you to collect a few other resources for you and will follow up here with that information as we get it.
Where'd he go? Hollywood said, Where'd who goooooo?

Re: GA Flying in Japan

Posted by Jon Gandy on Aug 24, 2017 8:31 am

Hello again David.

We did find a flying club you may want to check out as well.  Here is the website:
Where'd he go? Hollywood said, Where'd who goooooo?

Re: GA Flying in Japan

Posted by Terry Winnett on Aug 25, 2017 1:08 am

The Aeroclub at Yokota is the only one associated with the US military on Honshu and isn't too far from Tokyo.  Refer to the website in the previous post and give the manager, Vic Arzuaga, a call and he'll give you all the information that you need.  The biggest question is base access for a civilian and he can answer that as well.  If you aren't able to access the base, Vic might be able to point you to some of the other civlian airfields in the area, like Chofu (RJTF).  Good luck and hope you can fly around downtown's pretty cool!  

Re: GA Flying in Japan

Posted by Philip Busch on Sep 21, 2017 3:26 pm

I can tell you that the Flying club at Atsugi has closed many years ago. Last I knew the one at Yokota AFB was open but oyu would need to have a military ID to get through the gates.  I learned to fly at Atsugi, which is a Navy base, you would also need to have a valid Military or Government ID card to get in.

It is very expensive to fly for the average Japanses citizen to persue a license. Most of them find it significantly cheaper to come to the US and get a US license then convert over. Keep in mind that traveling in Japan by a vehicle is slow. The distance many only be 20 miles but it can take up to 2 hours to reach your desination 20 miles away.