By far the most convenient way of getting around sparsely populated Hokkaido is by renting a car. This is especially so when visiting some of the national parks or onsen resorts. However, visitors not used to driving in snow should be careful in the winter, and note that speed limits are reduced significantly (only about 80km/h) in winter when the expressways are covered in snow. As such, give yourself more time to cover the same distance in the winter than you would in the summer.
Driving in Hokkaido is a pleasant experience. The roads are good. The air is clean, heavenly driving by rich greens and flowers. Most of all, the people of Hokkaido are friendly.
The driving season in Hokkaido is from April to November. Rental cars are reasonable, and most rental cars are equipped with a navigation system. Just input a destination telephone number. That is it. The car will take you to the destination.
To drive a car in Japan, a Japanese driving license or an international driving permit is required. The minimum age for driving in Japan is 18 years. For detailed information, contact your consulate, or information centers.