Tokyo is an exciting, vibrant city full of energy and diversity. Here, you can experience everything from listening to live bands at karaoke rooms to sweating it out in TeamLab’s immersive art sauna.
Although Tokyo’s train and metro system may seem intimidating at first, once you understand its layout it becomes quite easy. Apps like Tokyo Station and Google Maps can both come in handy when trying to plan out routes across town. Getting into the city is simple with Cathay Pacific flights on routes like Johannesburg to Tokyo.
Preparing your itinerary before arriving in Japan will save you the stress of trying to arrange accommodation and events on arrival; they typically fill up quickly during peak travel seasons.
Make sure that you purchase a prepaid SIM card well in advance; it makes communication much simpler and is much more cost-effective than purchasing tourist data plans when in country. Most companies provide options for ordering the card before arriving in your destination country and collecting or having it sent directly to your hotel or meeting place.
Understand that although Tokyo may be an exciting and vibrant city, it’s essential to respect locals’ desire for silence in public spaces. Talking loudly on public transportation or restaurants is considered rude in Japanese culture and should never occur. Additionally, using your cellphone in train cars or public areas is forbidden and should never occur.
First-time visitors to Tokyo will likely be drawn to areas near iconic landmarks, like Shibuya and Shinjuku. Look for hotels within 15-minute walking distance or near stations that will get them there quickly; alternatively, cheaper options might exist in Ginza or Asakusa.
Asakusa is home to the iconic Sensoji Temple and TOKYO SKYTREE for stunning city views. If shopping is more your scene, Ginza and Omotesando offer luxurious department stores for shopping opportunities.
Pack Comfortable Clothes
Tokyo weather can be unpredictable, so pack clothes suitable for both hot and cool conditions. On warm days, light breathable fabrics like cotton or poly-cotton may help to keep you comfortable when the heat intensifies; additionally hats and sunglasses may protect from harmful UV rays from the sun’s UV rays. When packing for cooler temperatures bring light jackets as well as umbrellas; in case the evening or morning weather becomes chillier it might also help bringing along a hoodie and sweater which can easily transform into jackets when temperatures turn colder or turns colder when conditions change rapidly.
Spring in Tokyo can be breathtakingly beautiful, yet temperatures often change rapidly throughout the day, so packing clothes that can easily layer up is key. Short-sleeved tees and blouses work great for daywear while light jackets should be packed as protection on cooler nights. In warmer conditions, one-piece shirt dresses or maxi skirts made of breathable materials work wonderfully for daywear; add killer heels when going out at night!
Summer temperatures and humidities can reach dangerously high levels, so a light jacket and umbrella are both essential items. In case of rainy conditions, waterproof jacket and umbrella may be more practical. As temperatures begin to decrease significantly at night during fall and winter sets in, wearing warm clothing with snow hat, gloves, and ear muffs is important protection from the cold temperatures.
Carry A Baggie
Packing for Japan can be daunting. After all, its traditions and architecture seamlessly mix ancient with contemporary, not to mention its vast network of trains and subways that can make luggage management challenging. To help guide your packing efforts as smoothly as possible during this trip.
Make your trip less stressful by packing a small carry-on bag for the duration of your stay. Most hotels in the city are willing to store your bag for a small fee, while you could also utilize luggage delivery services known as Takkyubin to send it between hotels at additional fees.
Takkyubin services are particularly convenient when travelling with children, allowing you to leave your baggage at your hotel while taking public transportation around town. You’ll likely find them available at train and subway station entrances as well as convenience stores, airport baggage desks, or anywhere that displays “Takkyubin”.
Another smart way to keep clothing and other belongings organized in a small bag you’re carrying around is with travel cubes, with different-coloured cubes for clothing, underwear, toiletries, device chargers etc. Making finding everything quickly easier! Additionally, a multi-passport holder comes in handy as an easily accessible place for all family passports to be stored together – plus it doubles up as space for important travel documents such as guidebooks and itineraries!
Have A QR Code Reader App
An essential item for anyone traveling to Japan, particularly Tokyo, is a QR Code reader app. With it you’ll be able to scan codes for the Tokyo Metro and other transit options in English as well as other languages – not forgetting local restaurants and attractions! Plus it can help when it comes to understanding Tokyo’s complex transportation system!
Google Translate and Yomiwa are two excellent QR Code readers for travelers. Google translates written Japanese using your phone’s camera while Yomiwa can translate text from any language into another medley of languages – both are available free-of-charge apps that you can even download to use offline!
NeoReader is another widely used QR Code reader, offering fast and accurate barcode scanning with standard barcodes as well as QR Codes. It can read Data Matrix, QR, Aztec Codes, EAN and UPC barcodes with ease; additionally it saves an extensive history of scans for easy future reference – making this an all-round great scanner option suitable for smartphones.
Mobile payments such as PayPay have become more widespread; physical Suica and Pasmo cards still play an integral part in daily life; however, mobile app-based payments have made inroads. PayPay app can be found widely accepted at stores such as 7-Eleven, Lawson FamilyMart most major supermarket chains as well as Tully’s as well as offering frequent discount and bonus campaigns.
Don’t Get On A Crowded Train
When traveling alone to Tokyo, it is wise to avoid riding crowded trains. At peak hour, Japan’s rail network becomes so congested that even slight movements from other commuters or door openings could potentially squash you and cause significant inconvenience for others around you. To stay safe while onboard a crowded train system, try placing your bag in front of yourself so it won’t cause issues with other travelers nearby.
Japan considers it to be an act of courtesy to avoid speaking too loudly in public spaces, including trains. Furthermore, using your cell phone in any way during subway rides is strictly forbidden – therefore your phone must always remain silent to avoid distracting those nearby.
Another key tip for making train travel less stressful and increasing your space to move freely is standing further back from the doors, where most passengers tend to congregate. Doing this will give you more room to move around freely while simultaneously relieving some stress during your journey.
Note that when standing on an escalator it is customary to stay on the left side, so other riders in a rush can pass without obstruction. Keep this in mind when walking on sidewalks – it will help ensure a seamless journey through Tokyo’s bustling streets!
Don’t Try Tipping
Tipping in Japan is not a prevalent practice and any attempts at leaving tips for service providers may be refused, leading to uncomfortable interactions between both parties involved.
Attracting exceptional service should be recognized by thanking both tour guides and wait staff, without offering gratuity. However, if your guide went the extra mile to enhance your experience it would be appropriate to give an additional amount. Please remember to ask before handing any money over as this constitutes a gift that must be presented with dignity.
When staying at a traditional Japanese hotel known as a ryokan, it is customary to leave a tip for their hospitality and attention to detail. Make sure your tip arrives in an envelope to avoid embarrassment or confusion!
Omoide Yokocho, Tokyo’s well-known “memory lane”, provides visitors with a glimpse into Japanese culture and nightlife. Here you’ll find numerous small food stalls serving traditional street snacks that don’t offer English menus and may require Google Translate in order to understand. Make sure that when finished visiting these bustling stalls that only offer seating for limited numbers; remembering they may close immediately due to limited space!