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Advising hotels of time of arrival?

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Hi, as we will not have the facility of using a phone in Japan (we shall be data only on our mobile) we are confused by the seeming necessity of hotels there needing one to tell them of one's time of arrival in advance: is this really necessary? We aim to arrive around the time of check-in, or before when we shall ask if we can leave our bags or even inadvertently later! (we have either paid in advance or they have our credit card guarantee where they will be paid no matter what, and , if we arrive late surely they will let us have the room we have booked and paid for/ undertaken to pay?)
Any experience from my fellow Fodorites?

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