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Northern Tohoku (Aomori, Iwate, and Akita prefectures) has an excellent way for foreigners staying in Japan one year or less to see the sights of the prefecture: the Northern Tohoku Welcome Card gets you discounts on public buses (50%), at hotels (10%), and at museums (discount varies). The free card is available upon presentation of your passport after filling out a short application form. For complete information in English, visit the Northern Tohoku Welcome Card website.
Northern Tohoku Welcome Card (www.northern-tohoku.gr.jp/welcome/english/. For Aomori, Akita, and Iwate Prefectures.)