Review: First Cabin Kansai Airport (Capsule Hotel)

Review: First Cabin Kansai Airport (Capsule Hotel)

If you have an early morning flight out of Osaka Kanai airport, you can either stay at one of the many hotels that can be found just across the bridge on the mainland, or pick one of the two hotels located directly on the airport island.

Last month – before catching an early morning flight to Hong Kong – I had a chance to stay at one of the two. As I only needed a place to catch a couple of hours of sleep before a 7AM flight, I opted for the cheaper First Cabin rather than the full service Hotel Nikko.

Continue reading this review to see what the First Cabin Kansai Airport capsule hotel was like.

Are you interested in trying business or first class for the price of economy?

If so, you might want to check out Four Ways to Try Business Class Without Breaking the Bank - a free guide that I put together detailing some of the ways I was able to do so - and experiment with some of the methods mentioned in it.

Click here to get the FREE guide

Booking the Room

Originally, I booked the room through Hotels.com as I do with most of my hotel stays. However, since I found a cheaper rate directly through First Cabin’s website later on, I cancelled the Hotel.com booking and booked the room directly through the hotel’s website.

The booking process was smooth, and I was able to get a “Business Class Cabin” for 6,000 yen (about 55 dollars) – as opposed to 7,000 yen via Hotels.com.

By the time I decided to book my room, no more “First Class Cabins” that offer a bit more space were available.

First Cabin Kansai Airport Entrance
Entrance into First Cabin Kansai Airport.

Getting to the Hotel

As mentioned in the introduction, the hotel is located on the airport island, and it’s just a short walk from the main terminal (or a short shuttle bus ride away from the low-cost terminal).

More precisely, it’s located in Aeroplaza, a building next to the airport’s train station that also houses Hotel Nikko as well as a couple of other facilities.

To get there from the terminal, you can take a covered walkway from the terminal’s second floor. Simply follow signs pointing to “Hotel” and “Railways.”

Getting to First Cabin Kansai Airport
Heading to the hotel from the terminal.
Getting to First Cabin Kansai Airport
Walkway leading to Aeroplaza.
Getting to First Cabin Kansai Airport
Aeroplaza.

Check-in, Lobby, Dining, and Other Facilities

When I arrived at the hotel around 10PM, there was a line of ten or so people ahead of me – and so, it took some time until I was able to check in.

After paying for the room, I was given an explanation of the facilities, and I was also offered a choice of (cheap) earphones or a really nice headset to use for watching TV. More about that later when I talk about the room, though.

The lobby was simple, but quite nice – decorated with a piano.

First Cabin Kansai Airport Reception
Reception.
First Cabin Kansai Airport Lobby
Lobby.

Before the area with the rooms, there was a small communal area with some counters. Given that the rooms are separated by gender, this area was used by groups that wanted to spend some time together before going to sleep.

Guests could also buy some drinks and snacks from a coffee machine, candy dispensers, as well as drink vending machines.

First Cabin Kansai Airport Communal Area
Communal area.
First Cabin Kansai Airport Vending Machines
Coffee and candies.
First Cabin Kansai Airport Vending Machines
Vending machine.

Of course, the dozens of stores and restaurants in the terminal (and some in Aeroplaza itself) were easily accessible as well.

Guest Room

Because First Cabin is not a “real” hotel, the Japanese law does not allow its rooms to be lockable. Instead, they are only equipped with a curtain. Because of that, the hotel has two parts – male and female – which can only be accessed using a keycard that one gets during check-in.

While some other First Cabin branches offer “Premium Economy Cabins” which are true capsules, the “Business Class Cabins” and “First Class Cabins” offered at the Kansai Airport branch were full height.

Still, since the footprint of the “Business Class Cabins” is quite small, there was a luggage storage space in the hallway. There were also some humidifiers, etc. that guests could borrow.

First Cabin Kansai Airport Luggage Storage
Luggage storage space.
First Cabin Kansai Airport Rental Items
Rental items.
First Cabin Kansai Airport Hallway
One of the hallways with cabins.

The “Business Class Cabin” that I stayed in was – as mentioned above – full height, but small. In fact, it was basically the size of a single bed with a counter along one of its sides.

First Cabin Kansai Airport Business Class Cabin
My cabin.
First Cabin Kansai Airport Business Class Cabin
The “Business Class Cabins” were just a bit wider than a single bed.

As far as the cabin’s equipment is concerned, there was a lockable storage box in the counter. And, there were a pair of power outlets, a reading light, and air conditioner controller on one of the walls.

While there was a television as well, it had to be watched using headset given that the walls were thin and there was only a curtain rather than a real door.

First Cabin Kansai Airport Storage Locker
Locker.
First Cabin Kansai Airport Power Outlets
Power outlets, etc.
First Cabin Kansai Airport Television
TV and hangers.
First Cabin Kansai Airport TV Headset
Headset.

Quite obviously, the individual cabins were not equipped with toilets or showers – instead, there were communal ones. Some amenities including slippers, towels, and dental kits were waiting in the cabin upon check-in, though.

First Cabin Kansai Airport Slippers
Slippers.
First Cabin Kansai Airport Amenities
PJs, towels, etc.

The bathrooms were large and clean. And, there were both individual shower rooms as well as a Japanese-style communal bathtub.

A coin-operated washing machine was available in the bathroom as well.

The shower rooms themselves were quite small and simple, but more than sufficient for a quick shower.

First Cabin Kansai Airport Restroom
Restroom.
First Cabin Kansai Airport Coin Laundry
Washing machine.
First Cabin Kansai Airport Bathroom
Bathroom.
First Cabin Kansai Airport Shower Room
The shower room was small but sufficient.
First Cabin Kansai Airport Shower Room
Shower room.

Before checking out, I also had a chance to quickly peek into one of the “First Class Cabins.” It seemed to be more or less the same as the “Business Class” one, except there was an extra coffee table, and some space to walk around or keep your luggage in.

The bathrooms and other shared facilities available to those staying in the “First Class Cabins” are the same as described above, of course.

First Cabin Kansai Airport First Class Cabin
“First Class Cabin.”

First Cabin Kansai Airport Summary

If you value maximum privacy over value or if even the slightest noises bother you when you try to sleep, then you will be better off staying at Hotel Nikko or one of the hotels on the mainland.

If, however, you are looking for a decently comfortable place to sleep for a few hours before catching an early morning flight (or after arriving late), then I can highly recommend First Cabin Kansai Airport.

The price might be on the higher end for a capsule hotel, but the location is unbeatable. Unless you go with the alternative – like I’ve done a couple of times in the past – and sleep on one of the benches in the terminal.

Get Your FREE "Four Ways to Try Business Class Without Breaking the Bank" Guide

No, I am not going to tell you how to fly in first class and sip Dom Perignon for free…

But, I am going to introduce you to a couple of ways you can experiment with to try a business class flight without having to spend thousands of dollars.

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Get Your FREE "Four Ways to Try Business Class Without Breaking the Bank" Guide

No, I am not going to tell you how to fly in first class and sip Dom Perignon for free…

But, I am going to introduce you to a couple of ways you can experiment with to try a business class flight without having to spend thousands of dollars.

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