You can get almost anywhere on the mainland by bus, both within the prefecture and beyond:

Kagoshima Airport Bus

There are buses to and from Kagoshima airport available around the prefecture. Most towns or cities with train stations have an airport bus. It’s a fairly cheap and convenient way to commute to the airport. Depending on how far you live from the airport and how long you are going to be gone, it can be cheaper to take the bus than it is to drive (especially as you’ll also have to pay for parking at the airport for however long your trip is).

Kagoshima Airport Bus Schedule

Expressway Buses

Several companies offer service to and from Kagoshima City. Tickets can be purchased (preferably in advance) from a travel agent, at the Izuro Expressway Bus Center in Tenmonkan (099-222-1220) or the Express Bus Center on the first floor of the Solaria Hotel near Kagoshima Chuo Station. You should also be able to buy tickets from a local travel agent in your area. Look near your local bus station; there might be a tiny bus center hidden inside a nearby store that can sell you tickets. You can also call the bus company.

Prices vary and overnight buses are usually the cheapest way to travel. The bus companies may offer discounts if you buy 4 tickets (2 round trip tickets) so if you plan on going away often or if you are going with a friend, check to see if you can get a deal. Most of the time express buses are comfortable with only 3 seats across with aisles between the seats. The overnight bus is a good option for getting to Fukuoka when you head out on your international travels and have an early flight. Tickets go on sale one month before the departure date.

Miyazaki 宮崎, 2 hours 50 minutes
Oita 大分, Day: 5 hours, 40 minutes, Night: 7 hours, 30 minutes
Fukuoka 福岡, Day: 4 hours, 30 minutes, Night: 6 hours, 30 minutes
Kobe 神戸/Amagasaki 尼崎, 13 hours
Osaka 大阪, 12 hours, 23 minutes (Namba), 11 hours, 40 minutes (Umeda

Rapica IC Card (Ride and Pay Intelligent Card)
  • Rechargeable smart card that works on Kagoshima City buses/tram/ferries, and JR Kyushu, Nangoku, Iwasaki, and Kagoshima Kotsu buses.
  • Can be purchased (and recharged) on municipal buses/trams and from vending machines in Amu Plaza, Kagoshima City Hall, Takapla, Maruya Gardens, Yamakataya, Korimoto Daiei, and Kencho for ¥3000 (¥2750 credit/¥500 refundable deposit).
  • To charge the card on the bus, take the card and ¥1000 bill to front of bus, wait until driver is not busy (i.e. stopped at traffic light) and say, “tsumimashi onegai shimasu.”
  • You receive an additional ¥100 for every ¥1000. Your fare is automatically calculated because you scan the card when you board and when you leave. You don’t have to bother with tram transfer tickets either.
  • If your CO gives you a card for commuting to schools, you need to buy a separate one for personal use.
  • In theory, it is integrated with other Japanese smart card systems: Suica, PASMO, ICOCA, PiTaPa, TOICA.
  • Click here to learn more about the Rapica IC Card.