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Free Bus?! Access Guide to Hokkaido’s Huge “Rusutsu Resort”

Free Bus?! Access Guide to Hokkaido’s Huge “Rusutsu Resort”

Date published: 4 March 2020
Last updated: 6 March 2020

Rusutsu Resort is Hokkaido’s largest scale winter resort where you can enjoy premium snow powder and a majestic landscape. There are 37 courses for beginners, intermediate and advanced skiers, and they even offer fun snow activities such as dog sledding and riding snowmobiles.

For accommodation, they have the “Rusutsu Resort Hotel & Convention” and “The Westin Rusutsu Resort,” which both offer a comfortable stay and exquisite Hokkaido cuisine.

It takes about 120 minutes to reach Rusutsu Resort from New Chitose Airport and Sapporo. It also has great access as the bus arrives in front of the “Rusutsu Resort Hotel & Convention” North Wing and in front of the “The Westin Rusutsu Resort.”

We’ve put together detailed routes to reach Rusutsu Resort from the major areas of Hokkaido.
Text & Photos: Kawashima Nobuhiro

Table of Contents
  1. 1: Access from New Chitose Airport for Guests Staying at Rusutsu Resort [BIGRUNS]
  2. 2: Access from New Chitose Airport to Rusutsu Resort [Resort Liner]
  3. 3: Access to Rusutsu Resort from Sapporo, Free Shuttle Bus [Rusutsu Go]
  4. 4 Access to Rusutsu Resort from Niseko
  5. 5 Access to Rusutsu Resort from Kutchan

1: Access from New Chitose Airport for Guests Staying at Rusutsu Resort [BIGRUNS]

“BIGRUNS” is the direct bus to Rusutsu Resort for guests staying at the official hotels, but it also requires a reservation seven days in advance. If you are planning to stay at the official hotel, it’s a good idea to make a reservation at the same time.

BIGRUNS just before departure.

For New Chitose Airport instead of heading to the bus stop, head to the meeting place in the Domestic Terminal Building or the International Terminal Building for the reception. It takes about 10 minutes on foot to reach the domestic terminal from the international terminal, but you don’t have to exit the build, and you can continue to use luggage carts.

There are multiple bus-stops, and it is full of sightseeing buses

Make sure to be at the domestic and international flight meeting place 20 minutes before the departure. After you are done with reception, follow the instructions of the guide, then head to the bus.

Here is the access information to reach the reception area in order from domestic flights to international flights.

For Domestic Flights - Head to the Reception Counter in front of “Arrival Gate 5” on the First Floor of Domestic Terminal Building
The reception for the “BIGRUNS” is on the first floor of the Domestic Terminal Building at the “BIGRUNS Counter.” The arrival gate for the domestic flight is also on the same floor, but since there are five arrival gates, you may have to walk a little.

To the left of the photo is “Arrival Gate 5” and to the right is the reception counter, next to is the airport information counter
There are many guides and information for Rusutsu Resort

The BIGRUNS Counter is near the front of “Arrival Gate 5.” Since there is an information counter next to it, it is easy to find. If you exit from “Arrival Gate 4,” turn left and go straight for about 100m, and it will be on your right-hand side. Also, there are various travel company counters along the way, so be careful.

From arrival gases 1, 2, and 3, it will talk a bit longer to reach. After exiting from arrival gates 1, 2, and 3, head left and once you reach the rental car counter, head outside to the bus and taxi lane and walk along the yellow road surface marked "To the Southside Arrival Lobby.”

Follow the yellow road surface to head toward the Southside Arrival Lobby
Head outside and walk along the taxi boarding area. The door to the Southside Arrival Lobby is near the crowd of people in the back.

After walking for a bit, you’ll find a door which is near “Arrival Gate 4.” Then proceed as explained above. Taking into account that you will be walking with large luggage in an unfamiliar place, you might want to look at a 10 to 15 minute travel time.

Again, reception closes 20 minutes before the bus departure time. The arrival gate will depend on your flight; make sure to give yourself enough time just to be safe.

For International Flights -International Terminal Building First Floor, Go Down One Level from the Arrival Gate
The reception for the “BIGRUNS” is on the first floor of the International Terminal Building. The arrival gate of the international flights is on the second floor, after getting past customs, take the elevator on the right to reach the first floor.

There are counters for bus companies and travel companies on the second floor, so be careful.

Now you’re at the arrival gate area. After exiting the arrival gate head right (as if you were going towards the front of the photo).

After completing procedures such as retrieving your checked luggage, head out of the restricted area to the arrival gate, then head right. Once you pass the convenience store “Lawson” to the right, there is an elevator to the far backside, take the elevator to reach the first floor.

Once on the first floor, head towards the information center located in the center are of the building, and the meeting place is next to the smoking section. Since there isn’t a counter, it may be hard to find at first, but look for the pink sign written in English. Make sure to arrive 15 minutes before the bus’s departure. You can get here in about 5 minutes from the arrival gate.

Look for this sign. It is written in English, Korean, traditional Chinese and simplified Chinese so that non-Japanese visitors can find it easily.

Bus Operation Period
Daily service during the operating period of the resort

Time Required to Reach the Ski Resort
・To Rusutsu Resort Hotel & Convention
About 120 minutes from New Chitose Airport Domestic Terminal
About 130 minutes from New Chitose Airport International Terminal

・To The Westin Rusutsu Resort
About 130 minutes from New Chitose Airport Domestic Terminal
About 140 minutes from New Chitose Airport International Terminal

Reservation Requirements
Reservations required
Seven days in advance by 6:00 p.m. (It is possible to get a seat after the deadline if there is an opening).
For customers staying in facilities other than Rusutsu Resort or planning a day-trip, we recommend the Resort Liner.
*Information as of October 2019
* There may be changes such as the period of operation. Please check the official website for the latest information regarding operating periods, times, fees, and the like.

2: Access from New Chitose Airport to Rusutsu Resort [Resort Liner]

Another direct bus from New Chitose Airport to Rusutsu Resort is the “Resort Liner.”
Before we explain how to access the bus, we will go over the routes.

Follow the staff’s instruction to the boarding area to get on the bus

This bus will head to Niseko, and it will stop by Rusutsu Resort on the way. It requires a reservation, and non-hotel customers can use it.

However, for day-trip customers, you can only board and get-off at “Rusutsu Resort Hotel & Convention” and not “The Westin Rusutsu Resort.”
The boarding method at New Chitose Airport is the same as “BIGRUNS,” instead of heading to the bus stop, head to the meeting place in the Domestic Terminal Building, or the International Terminal Building for the reception and follow the staff to board the bus.

Make sure to be at the domestic and international flight meeting place 15 minutes before the departure.
The meeting place is different from “BIGRUNS,” so refer to the following.

For Domestic Flights - Head to the Domestic Flight Tour Desk between Domestic Terminal Building “Arrival Gate 4” and “Arrival Gate 5”
The reception for the “Resort Liner” is on the first floor of the Domestic Terminal Building. There are numerous travel company counters, look for the orange Hokkaido Resort Liner” sign.

After exiting “Arrival Gate 4,” take a left and walk for about two minutes, from “Arrival Gate 5” take a right and walk for about a minute. For Arrival Gates 1 through 3, you will take the same course as the “BIGRUNS,” since you will walk for a bit make sure you plan ahead of the time.

There are counters for many travel companies. Look for the orange sign

For International Flights - International Terminal Building Second Floor! Right by the Arrival Gate
The reception for the “Resort Liner” is on the second floor of the International Terminal Building After exiting the arrival gate past the restricted area, head left and the reception is located near the tour counters.

Above the reception counter, there is an orange sign with “Hokkaido Resort Liner” written in English. It is in a convenient location that you can reach in one to two minutes form the arrival gate.

Additionally, there are cases where the meeting place will change, so make sure to check with the management company’s official website.

The sign is also written in English, Korean and Chinese

Bus Operation Period
2019 December 1st - 2020 April 3rd

Time Required to Reach the Ski Resort
・To Rusutsu Resort Hotel & Convention
About 125 minutes from New Chitose Airport Domestic Terminal
About 115 minutes from New Chitose Airport International Terminal

・To The Westin Rusutsu Resort
About 130 minutes from New Chitose Airport Domestic Terminal
About 120 minutes from New Chitose Airport International Terminal


Reservation Requirements
Reservations required
*Information as of October 2019
*There may be changes such as the period of operation. Please check the official website for the latest information regarding operating periods, times, fees, and the like.

3: Access to Rusutsu Resort from Sapporo, Free Shuttle Bus [Rusutsu Go]

You can reach Rusutsu Resort from Sapporo with the “Rusutsu Go” free shuttle bus in about 120 minutes. Also, there is the “Resort Liner,” which goes directly from major hotels in Sapporo City to Rusutsu Resort for a fee, and local buses that depart from Sapporo-Ekimae Bus Terminal heading towards Toyako Onsen that stops by Rusutsu Resort.

Here we will cover the free shuttle bus “Rusutsu Go.”

It’s great that you can take “Rusutsu Go” for free!

It requires a reservation to board “Rusutsu Go,” which is available to Rusutsu Resort guests and people going day-trip skiing and other activities.

The boarding place is in front of “Kamori Building 3,” which is near JR Sapporo and subway station. It is about a two-minute walk from the station.

After you head outside of JR Sapporo Station on the Southside, head to the right. While going straight, you will find Daimaru Department store to the right, and a police box to you left, head towards the road on the left, and you will find a silver building with a “Yomiuri Shimbun” sign and another silver building with “ASTY45” sign.

The building in the front is the "Yomiuri Shimbun” building, and the right is “ASTY45”
Kita 4 Nishi 4 intersection. Cross the street from the right side of the photo to the left side

Cross the “Kita 5 Nishi 4” intersection to the “Yomiuri Shimbun” building side, and head straight with the building to your left, soon you will come across the convenience store Lawson on the left-hand side. The building with Lawson is “Kamori Building 3.” The bus will arrive in front of this building.

コンビニエンスストア『ローソン』が目印

Look for the convenience store Lawson.

The bus requires reservations; if you didn't make a reservation by 5:00 pm the day before, you wouldn’t be able to board.

Bus Operation Period
Daily service during the ski resort operating period

Time Required to Reach the Ski Resort
Rusutsu Resort Hotel & Convention
About 120 minutes from Sapporo (Kamori Building 3)

・The Westin Rusutsu Resort
About 130 minutes from Sapporo (Kamori Building 3)

Reservation Requirements
Reservations required
A day in advance by 5:00 p.m.
*Information as of October 2019
*There may be changes such as the period of operation. Please check the official website for the latest information regarding operating periods, times, fees, and the like.

4 Access to Rusutsu Resort from Niseko

There is a reservation bus to Rusutsu Resort from the world-famous winter resort Niseko for a limited time. At Niseko there are few large scale slopes at the foot of Mt. Niseko Annupuri, the bus will stop at three locations by the ski slopes and hotels.

The travel time will take about 60 minutes to 100 minutes, depending on where the bus departs. The final destination for Rusutsu Resort is in front of the Rusutsu Resort Hotel & Convention North Wing. Here are the three areas where the bus will stop.

In front of Rusutsu Resort Hotel & Convention North Wing (Photo by Akira Tsujino)

The first stop is “Niseko Annupuri Kokusai Ski Area.”
The ski area’s unique feature is the wide courses. The bus starts from “Niseko Northern Resort Annupuri,” and stops by the bust stop “Niseko Annupuri” near the “Niseko Annupuri Kokusai Ski Area,” before heading to the next area.

The second stop is the “Niseko Village Ski Area."
It is a ski area with many long courses and forest courses that go through virgin forest. The bus will stop by the two hotels connected to the slope “The GREEN LEAF Hotel” and “Hilton Niseko Village,” before heading to the next area.

The third stop is “Niseko Grand Hirafu Ski Area.”
It is the largest scale slope in the Niseko area, there are many hotels and restaurants in this region, and it is like a winter resort city. The bus will stop by the bus stop “Hirafu Welcome Counter,” which is in front of the “Hirafu Welcome Center,” and the bus stop near the entrance of this region, “Hirafu Jujiro.”

There are bus stops from various operating companies in front of the welcome center (photo by Akira Tsujino)

To reach Rusutsu Resort, it takes about 100 minutes from the “Niseko Annupuri Kokusai Ski Area” region, about 90 minutes from the “Niseko Village Ski Area” region, and about 60 minutes from “Niseko Grand Hirafu Ski Area” region.

Bus Operation Period
2019 December 31st - 2020 March 8th

Time Required to Reach the Ski Resort
・To Rusutsu Hotel & Convention
About 100 minutes from Niseko Annupuri Kokusai Ski Area
About 90 minutes from Niseko Village Ski Area
About 60 minutes from Niseko Grand Hirafu Ski Area”

Reservation Requirements
Reservations required (Donan Bus Kutchan Office, phone 0136-22-1558)
* There may be changes such as the period of operation. Please check the official website for the latest information regarding operating periods, times, fees, and the like.

5 Access to Rusutsu Resort from Kutchan

It's pretty easy and convenient to take the local bus from JR Kutchan Station to access Rusutsu Resort by train. We recommend this route if you plan on taking the public transportation system while sightseeing in Otaru and Yoichi. However, the bus will only stop by the “Rusutsu Resort Hotel & Convention” and not “Westin Rusutsu Resort.”                            
The bus takes about 56 minutes. Reservation is not required for local buses and is in operation all year round.

Bus Operation Period
Operates throughout the year

Time Required to Reach the Ski Resort
・To Rusutsu Resort Hotel & Convention Center
About 5 minutes from JR Kutchan Station

Reservation Requirements
Reservations not required (reservation not possible)
*Information as of October 2019
*There may be changes such as the period of operation. Please check the official website for the latest information regarding operating periods, times, fees, and the like.

  • Rusutsu Resort
    ルスツリゾート
    • Address 13 Izumikawa, Rusutsu-muraaza, Abuta-gun, Hokkaidō 048-1711
  • New Chitose Airport
    新千歳空港
    • Address Bibi, Chitose, Hokkaido 066-0012
  • Sapporo (Kamori Building 3)
    札幌(加森ビル3)
    • Address Kita 4 jo Nishi 4 chome Chuo-ku, Sapporo-shi, Hokkaido, 060-0004
  • Niseko Annupuri Kokusai Ski Area
    ニセコアンヌプリ国際スキー場
    • Address 485 Niseko, Niseko-cho, Abuta-gun, Hokkaidō 048-1511
  • Niseko Village Ski Resort
    ニセコビレッジスキーリゾート
    • Address Higashiyama Onsen, Niseko-cho, Abuta-gun, Hokkaidō 048-1592
  • Niseko Mt. Resort Grand Hirafu
    ニセコマウンテンリゾート グラン・ヒラフ
    • Address 204 Yamda, Kutchan, Abuta -gun, Hokkaido, 04-0081

    Reserve a Lift ticket in advance

    • Prince x Tokyu x NSD Common 1-day lift ticket <all day>
      4,500JPY
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  • JR Kutchan Station
    JR倶知安駅
    • Address Minami 3 Jonishi 4 chome 3, Kutchan-chō, Abuta-gun, Hokkaido 044-0033
*This information is from the time of this article's publication.
*Prices and options mentioned are subject to change.
*Unless stated otherwise, all prices include tax.

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