Hey guys! Rachel is joining me today! And we’re gonna talk about some tips for travelling in Japan Because Spring and Summer are coming up And I know lots of you guys are gonna come visit here So we thought we would think of some helpful things to tell you to hopefully improve your trip So the first one that we both thought was really important was Get a train card Let me show you mine so you know what I’m talking about I have a sticker over top of mine So you can’t really see it But it’s a little card like this It’s an IC card And you can fill this up with money And just tap it on the gates at the train station and you can go through and it’ll automatically take off how much money you need to pay for that trip off of your balance So instead of looking up… Oh I’m in Tokyo and I need to go to Shibuya Ok that’s like 170 yen… so I have to buy a 170 yen ticket You don’t have to do that You can just keep a balance on your card and just use it without thinking And when it runs out you can fill it up again at the machines It saves so much time and stress It just makes travelling so much easier There are a lot of different brands for them Some of them don’t work on every train line Right So if you get yours in Tokyo, it might not work on every train line in every other city And same for train cards from other cities as well And then there are also benefits for some of them Some of them will let you accumulate points So you can save money That’s so cool! The ones in Tokyo don’t All around it’s just very useful and awesome You should get one You can get these at the train machines where you buy tickets There’ll be an English button so just push that It’s pretty straightforward There are a lot of helpful apps you can get if you’re gonna be in Japan One of them would be a train app It’s kind of like a life saver Very recommended! When you’re travelling from one place to another The app will automatically calculate the quickest route, the cheapest route So you don’t have to go look at maps yourself Maps suck, the train maps suck here They’re really confusing If you get this app you can be like “I’m in Tokyo right now, and I wanna go here!” And then you can choose what you want If you want the cheapest route or the fastest route There’s English ones, and there’s Japanese ones I use the Japanese version So I say Tokyo at the top, Shibuya at the bottom So the station in the middle here is the station you need to transfer at So it tells you you have 4 minutes to get to your transfer spot Just very helpful! Something that may not be common sense in a lot of countries these days Japan is a cash society So you kinda need to have cash here when you go around A lot of stores don’t take credit cards Especially if they’re smaller or not in a big city Or if you’re paying for admission to something Like a shrine, it probably won’t take a credit card I would say about 70% of the places I go don’t accept credit cards Even ones that you would really think would Like a big department store or something You’ll be surprised, so always have cash on you for sure So Tokyo has 2 main airports Narita and Haneda airport Narita airport is actually located in Chiba prefecture Which is the prefecture beside Tokyo And it takes quite a while to get into Tokyo from Narita airport So if possible… It’s kinda rare because most planes do go to Narita if you’re coming from outside of Japan But if you can get a flight that comes into Haneda, I’d say go with that one It’s a lot easier You’ll be able to get into downtown Tokyo a lot quicker Always go for Haneda if you can A cool thing about Japan is that there’s basically no tipping here So you don’t have to worry when you go to a restaurant, you don’t leave a tip You don’t leave a tip for taxi drivers or… anything I can’t think of any instance where you would be expected to leave a tip I’ve never been in a situation where I’ve had to leave a tip here So don’t worry about it! Hair dressers, taxis, pizza man Nothing, literally. Just remember no tipping in Japan! And you’ll be fine Even if you feel like you wanna leave a tip, I don’t think you should Even if you feel like “This person was really awesome, I wanna give them a bonus!” They’ll just feel awkward And they’ll come running outside to give it back to you So it’s probably better not to do it even if you really want to Because they just don’t really understand the tipping culture here They assume you lost it or something And I think they feel really weird about trying to keep it Exactly, even if you try to explain to them If you just say thank you, you are above most customers That’s so true! No one says thank you so they’ll really appreciate that I find that really awkward When you’re in the grocery store and they ring in your groceries and hand them to you or give you your change or something Most people just take it And I’m always like ah, thank you! So seriously, if you just say arigatou gozaimasu everytime something happens They’re happy They’ll know that you appreciate their service This’ll probably be a really helpful one for lots of you guys I know that it’s come in very handy for me Google Translate! I know it has a horrible reputation, and you guys are all thinking but it sucks! and it translates things horribly! It really does. But there is one function on it that is very awesome and very accurate That is the camera function If you open up Google translate You will see a little camera picture here And if you click the camera It will turn into a camera, and you can find some kanji Let’s find some kanji that we can’t read Oh yeah there we go! So you’re in the toy store, and you’re wondering what the heck this is So what you do is take a picture of the Japanese writing on the box And it will pick up any kanji that it sees in the picture and you can just highlight with your finger the ones that you want it to read And it will give you the English for it! Refridgerator! Isn’t that so cool? With old school kanji apps you had to write them out with your finger while looking at it or you had to look through a list of kanji to find the correct one But with this all you have to do is take a picture So cool! Yeah it’s very very awesome I use this all the time Really reccomend that not only for kanji, but if you can’t read hiragana or katakana It will translate that for you as well So download Google translate and use the camera function So there are 3 potential problems you could run into with bathrooms here The most common is that they don’t have soap when you’re washing your hands So I always carry a bottle of hand sanitizer around with me because I get sick really easily So I always wanna wash my hands Especially before I eat #2 is they might not have a way to dry your hands That’s also very common So some people carry handkerchiefs around with them Like old times, handkerchiefs Or like a little face cloth So you can dry your hands after you use the bathroom You’ll see that facecloths are sold EVERYWHERE And you’re probably wondering WHY ARE THERE SO MANY FACE CLOTHS It’s because people keep them in their bags so they can dry their hands I don’t I’m not that crazy, I just… That works too And the third problem, which is quite rare but does happen occasionally There are some toilets that don’t have toilet paper Oh I’ve never come across one of those I’ve come across 2 so far Yikes I think one was in the Nagoya subway station I think they had a problem with people stealing the toilet paper So they got rid of it They might have it now, it was a long time ago Another one was in Akita prefecture We were driving around the backroads and found an outhouse at the bus stop, and there was no toilet paper Not like they ran outta toilet paper, there was no place to put toilet paper But that’s not very common But just in case, bring tissues or something But the hand thing is very common You’ll very rarely see paper towels and sometimes you’ll see the hand driers Okay one thing that is shopping related If you’re going to try on clothes, most likely you will have to take your shoes off before entering the change room You’ll be able to tell if you need to because they’ll have a little step up to go into the change room If there’s a step, that always means you need to take your shoes off It’s usually carpeted too Yeah there’ll be a carpet If it looks nice and clean, you probably need to take your shoes off If they just have a curtain around an area And it’s just the same type of flooring going all the way through then you might be okay leaving your shoes on But I’d say most often you need to take them off So if you’re unsure, maybe just look at someone and point at your shoes They’ll probably know what you’re asking I’m sure that lots of people ask that If you’re unsure I would say to take them off to be safe One other thing about changing rooms is you’ll find this little white face mask thingy inside of your changing room That is to put over your face if you’re going to try a shirt on so that your makeup doesn’t rub off on the shirt So it’s just like a white bag thing that you put over your face It feels so dumb I know!! (sometimes I don’t do it…) You put it on your head and then you put your shirt on So that you don’t get the makeup on it That’s pretty cool, it’s annoying as hell, but it’s cool So that’s what that is! So I don’t actually go to clubs or anything so I haven’t experienced this myself But word on the street! The cool people say! If you are walking along a street full of host clubs, kyabakura etc So like Roppongi, or Shinjuku… Kabukicho If they have people on the street who are trying to pull you into the club then that is supposed to be like not a good place to go into It’s not the same if a host is out on the street trying to attract customers But if someone is actually trying to pull you in Then a lot of those are kinda scammy Like they will give you a really high cover charge, like $100 And then they’ll force you to pay it before you can leave So be kinda careful if you’re gonna go to a place like that Maybe try to go with friends who have been there before Try to find a place that has a good reputation Yeah, good reviews online or something Don’t go randomly into clubs because some of them are pretty pricey Okay this should probably be #1 Conbinis in Japan are the best thing ever!!! Conbini is short for convenience store Because it’s convenient! But like SUPER convenient! Not like convenience stores back in Canada that suck Japanese convenience stores have everything! Literally everything. Snacks, clothing… If you like spilled some food on your shirt and you need a new shirt they sell tank tops or collared shirts They even sell hair dye! Because if Japanese people have coloured hair and they have to run to an interview or something or a business meeting that popped up and they need to colour their hair back to the original colour they’ll sell black hair dye in the convenience store You can mail packages! Yeah! They have a post service You can buy concert tickets You can pay your bills at convenience stores It’s ridiculous, you can do anything Honestly just think of something you need to do, you can probably do it there 7-11, Sunkus, Family Mart… Lawson They’re all good! Everybody has their favourite conbini LIke 7-11 has the best desserts, or Lawson has the best fried food Family Mart fried chicken~~ Each one kinda has it’s own specialty but they’re all really good If you’re in need or something, just look for a convenience store and they are everywhere, literally everywhere so you’ll be able to find one Alright if you have a foreign bank card, debit card And you’re looking to withdraw money You can do that from a 7-11 ATM, a Citibank ATM or the post office ATMs Those are the 3 places that often accept foreign cards I’m not saying that they will accept all of them, but they will accept many of them Many convenience stores will not accept foreign cards whatsoever They only accept a few types of Japanese cards even But 7-11 is a lifesaver They’ll accept everything they’re really awesome So look for a 7-11, a Citibank or a post office and you should be okay I hope those were some useful tips for you! I wish you the best on your trip to Japan, I hope you have an awesome time! If there’s anything else that you’re really curious about leave a comment down below and I will try to answer them If you have any other tips you would like to leave, please do that in the comments Thanks for watching guys! And make sure to go check out Rachel’s channel if you are not already subscribed to her Lots of very useful videos about Japan over there as well So definitely do that Bye guys!

100 thoughts on “12 TIPS FOR TRAVEL IN JAPAN

  1. Great, helpful series of videos. We'll be touring there for several weeks and renting a car for some areas like Shikoku. Do you have a video on tips for car rental and driving thru Japan? Thanks.

  2. Taxi Driverです。タクシーは荷物をトランクに入れた時やSightseeing Information教えて貰ったら、Tip渡してください。

  3. Google translate is also good to use if you don't have a Japanese keyboard on your computer settings. You just change it to "Japanese to English" and then "kana mode" and type what you want and it'll put it into hiragana for your and you can copy and paste.

  4. Excellent tips. Haneda international terminal is manageable. Haneda to dt Tokyo in minutes by monorail, and with great views.

  5. Is the railway station for the shinkansen connecting to the one in the city ? I mean i heard that i need to buy jrpass to travel across the city cost effectively, can i use that jrpass to travel inside the city?

  6. Just a cool tip if you don't have a data plan while in Japan you can also download language packs on Google translate so if you download the Japanese one you won't need a data connection to translate for you. Also you can download offline maps on Google maps!

  7. Sharla, my wife and I love your videos on Japan! We're going to Tokyo for the first time in just a few days. Question: we'll be staying in Shinjuku area but would like to use both the Yanemote line and various subways to get around in Tokyo. Will a train card work on subways as well as rail lines? Thanks!

  8. Hi 🙂 I recently found you, it was very useful thank you !! Do you maybe know if it is possible to get Euros directly from the atm machine?

  9. 都会だけではなく、田舎にも旅行してほしいですね!ちなみに電車のICカードは田舎では使えませんので注意してくださいね。

  10. About the international cards, AEON is another choice! I live in Sendai, and they're pretty much everywhere so thats a good choice too

  11. What cell phone carriers in Japan? I have Verizon Wireless and live in the US. Would that be compatible with Japanese carriers? Which train card would be the most universal for a short-term tourist?

  12. Thank you so much for the tip about Haneda airport, I was looking at flights and was worried because it was flying me into Haneda instead of Narita

  13. Like your videos and have watched alot of different videos which helped me on my first amazing trip to Japan this past Sept. I've found that no one's videos mention that the Suica cards can be used at 711 and many vending machines. Also I've noticed that all park bathrooms don't have toilet paper. Keep up the great work. ?

  14. ICカードは、電車やバスを利用する以外にも、駅のコンビニや自販機でも使えるので確かに便利だけど、そのICカードを買う(正確には借りる)のに、500円程掛かりますよ。

  15. I know Hiragana, Katakana and some basic Kanjis, but I cant mostly understand the meaning of the words, just pronounce them…

  16. The train passes change from city to city. I've heard that the Suico cards with the penguin is the best for a multi-city pass in Japan. What do you think?

  17. God damn it! I just got back from Japan and I really wish I watched this video before I went. Especially the bit about 7 and Iholdings accepting foreign cards. That would have been particularly useful.

  18. Hey Sharla how much money should I bring with me on a two week trip to Tokyo, Osaka, and Kyoto and I’m a foodie so about how much money will it cost? Btw I’m flying from USA

  19. For the tips its also because ( my airbnb host explained) that japanese are modest and are expected to do their best to satisfactory. Tips seems like an “ intrinsic “ motivation ( as for noticing being from america) .

  20. チップはたまに日本でも払ってる外国人の人見ますね。

  21. How easy is it to communicate if you only know a few words or phrases? Thinking of going next year 🙂

  22. hi, sharla i'm nicolas from argentina and congratulation to you for your videos . i'll go to give you one 10's . hugs/greeting and kissing from argentina ☺

  23. Probably the story of the toilet paper story is probably because it was the location of the system to purchase at the entrance From Japan

  24. Thanks for the tips – Sharla. A bit off topic – but what software package did you use to produce your main 'manga' title?

  25. Tip 13: When in Japan, try to act/dress 5 years younger than you are. Especially for women/girls, smile (show your teeth) more, say Thank you more, bow more,, and last but not least put more make-up on.

  26. Hey, does anyone know what surcharges the different atm places have? Going to Japan in about 2 weeks and i dont reeally want to pay much more for my yen than i have to. Thanks!

  27. Thanks for the great tips! Enjoyed your video very much, you two are too cute. Question, whats the Yelp equivalent in Japan?

  28. Why would people dislike this?… I swear some people just dislike videos cause they can. That's just real low.


  30. What happens if you suddenly run out of money on your train card? Will it just beep and you can go to the reception and refill it? I'm going to Japan for the first time in februari. 😀

  31. Is it not possible to get a japanese bank account and then transfer money from your foreign bank account to the japanese one? (I don’t really know much about how these kind of things work) (sorry for my bad english)

  32. Thank you ladies!! Can you speak about the heat in July/August? I can duck into karaoke, shopping here and there but wish to climb hill in Nara. Will we be unable to breathe or is it bearable? American told me it was 'other world' heat. Wanna go soooooo badly but can't have daughter passing out.

  33. Some of the train cards, like Pasmo I think, can be customized with your name on it. Of course, you can't get a refund for the card if you do (you can still refund the balance on it before you leave).

  34. I used Google Translate camera for something as simple as すみません (which I'm pretty darn sure means excuse me) and they said it translated to "Sorry'h" XD

  35. I had watched this video a loong time ago, because I'm going on a trip to Japan soon I came back to see what I may need. At the moment I'm looking for translating apps that don't require internet. Does anyone have any suggestions, or is there any other apps I may need? I'll be traveling all over Japan so I want to make sure I'm prepared ?

  36. Youtube recommendation for the win. Going next week and I need those apps! So happy I watched this. 🙂
    What, in your opinion, is the best english train app?

  37. This may seem like a fairly simple or insignificant question that i should probably already know but is it true that most non-foreigners or Japanese people speak some form of basic English? I tried to research it but it was very divided. Thank you

  38. About tipping: when I was in Japan, my Japanese friend and I were in a hurry to get somewhere and we caught a cab. She let the cabbie know of our impending deadline, and he went far above and beyond the call to get us there on time. She tipped him rather handsomely for his service. I asked her why she tipped him and she explained that it was because of his extra diligence. So there may be some situations in Japan where tipping is acceptable.

  39. I like to sleep in Narita when I get off the plane. There is a lovely temple with a Peace Pagoda in the sweet little town.

  40. At Japanese Izakaya (sake restaurants), tip(Oto-oshi) is included in bill. You should ask waiters if it is possible not to pay it.

  41. Hang on, you're saying in most countries you don't have a post office in the convenience stores!!!!!
    Everywhere I've lived there was a post office in the convenience store

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