Tokyo has well organized and very punctual transportations. This page introduces the main transportation means so you can compare and decide what is best for you to use.

In Tokyo

  • You can go almost anywhere from JPY 150 ~ JPY 1,500 within Tokyo prefecture.
  • The trains in Japan are running on time unless there aren’t some accidents.
  • Many local lines are running through Tokyo. Even Japanese gets confused with the lines.
  • The earliest train is about 6am in the morning and the last train is about 11pm to midnight. It depends on where you leave and where you head to so don’t forget to check the last train if you’re partying at night.
  • Almost every 5 minutes, trains arrive at the main stations in Tokyo. However, these main stations are the top 10 busiest stations in the world so you can imagine stations are very crowded. You should avoid using trains at 7am~9am and 6pm~7pm because the trains are over-crowded for rush hour.
  • Big stations like Tokyo station, Shinjuku station, Shibuta station etc. are like a maze even to Japanese…!  Please take a good look at sign boards.
  • This is the URL for route search. We, Japanese, use it everyday. Very convenient that you can search where to change trains and the time of trains. (

How to pay?

1. Buy local train tickets

There are ticketing machine at each stations and you’ll buy it there by cash. Credit card cannot be used. After you get a ticket, put it in the gate when you enter and get on the train with the ticket. After enjoying train ride, you need to put the ticket in the gate again to exit.

2. Buy IC card

These are pre-paid smart cards that allow you to use almost all the transportations(buses and local trains) and to buy things at convenient stores. You can recharge the card at each stations’ ticketing machine and at most of the convenience stores. At convenience stores, please ask the cashier to recharge the card. There are no big differences between Suica and PASMO. It can be used at the same places by the same way. The selling companies just differ. Suica is sold by Japan Railway company and PASMO is sold by PASMO company (private lines united to make this company.) Check below for how to buy one! It is a good souvenir for you too.

3. JR pass

JR pass is the most economical pass for transportations. With this pass, you can use almost all the JR lines including Shinkansen (bullet trains) and local JR buses. Please check more at the detailed page for JR pass.

  • At 23wards of Tokyo, the starting fare is JPY 410.
  • The distance of 30 minutes is about JPY 10,000.
  • It is not hard to find taxis in central of Tokyo.
  • You can use Uber too but it is quite more expensive than normal taxis.
  • When you’re in hurry, or when you want to make sure to get to the place, or you want to avoid a crowd of people, taxis are useful.
  • There are no taxis that take too much fare in Tokyo. It can be used safely.

How to pay?

1. Credit card

Almost all the taxis accept credit cards.

2. IC card

You can also use smart cards for the taxis in Tokyo.

3. Cash

Of course, cash is okay too.

Tokyo to/from other prefecture

Shinkansen (bullet train) is well known in the world as Japan’s high technological transportation. You can transfer by this bullet train between main cities all over Japan. The seats are mainly divided in 3 types, non reserved seats, reserved seats, and reserved first class seats (green seats). You need to buy tickets before getting on the trains at ticketing machines or at the JR Ticket office in stations.

Some domestic flights are cheaper than using bullet trains. As for the rates, it depends on when you bought tickets and the season. Domestic flights are also faster than bullet trains usually. Main carriers in Japan are ANA (all Nippon airways) and JAL (Japan Airlines).

Overnight bus takes a long time to get to the destination but it is the most cheapest way. Also you can sleep while the bus is taking you to the destination. You can transfer between main cities all over Japan by bus too. Please check below URL for more details. (