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You’ve landed in Japan, and are overcome with excitement to have finally arrived in the country you’ve dreamed about for so long — but your excitement quickly turns to confusion as soon as you step off the airplane at Narita Airport. Your mind is flooded with questions about your new surroundings. Read more for the answers.
- How can I get around Japan without speaking Japanese?
- Can I travel solo in Japan?
- How can I make my short time in Japan amazing?
- Can I use my phone in Japan? What about internet?
Don’t panic! We have these answers and more to help put your mind at ease. Keep reading to learn what you need to start your journey off on the right foot with this complete guide to Narita Airport.
For those who are arriving at Haneda airport, please refer to our Complete guide to Haneda Airport. If you are traveling to Kansai (Osaka, Kyoto, Nara, Kobe, etc.), please refer to our Complete guide to Kansai Airport.
Available Narita Airport Services
Skip to what you need to know:
- Narita Airport WiFi
- Recharging Spots
- Free Internet + Computer
- Portable WiFi / Compatible SIM Cards
- Information Counters
- Transportation Between Narita Terminals
- Train Transportation out of Narita
Narita Airport WiFi
Likely, one of the first things you will want to do after landing at Narita Airport is to let your family and friends know you have arrived safely and post a selfie! If you want to get online, simply connect to the airport’s official WiFi ID: “FreeWiFi-NARITA”
How to Connect to Narita Airport Free WiFi
To access Narita Airport’s Free Wi-Fi service, follow the illustration below, with step-by-step text underneath.
- From your device’s “Settings” menu, set “WiFi” to ON and select “FreeWiFi-NARITA”.
- The WiFi connection screen will automatically be displayed and you will be asked to agree to the Terms and Conditions of Use and Security Caution (the orange button).
- Once you agree, you have access to the internet — no extra steps required.
Recharging spots for your devices are available in a number of locations throughout the terminals and are free of charge. They can be found at:
- Visitor service centers
- Flight departure gates
- Lounge areas for airline members
- Airport cafes, such as Starbucks, etc.
Free Internet + Computer
If for some reason you need to get on a computer with internet, Narita Airport has you covered with “Free Internet Terminals” available at a few locations for any passenger to obtain information prior to departure or after arrival.
You can find them before entering the passport control zone at the following locations:
Terminal 1: 2nd floor, Support Center
Terminal 2: 3rd floor, Support Center
Portable WiFi / Compatible SIM Cards
Various companies offer portable WiFi and SIM card services inside Narita Airport. Savvy travelers will make sure to rent either of the two before leaving the airport because staying connected is essential for any visitor to Japan.
We cover more on this service later in this guide, but you can jump ahead here.
Information counters are scattered throughout the airport terminals. The staff generally speak English and will help you with whatever needs you have while letting you experience Japan’s world-famous hospitality.
Information counters can provide you with a variety of information, such as:
- Transport to and from Japan’s main domestic and international airports
- Flight arrival and departure
- Hotels near airports
Transportation Between Narita Airport Terminals
There are many ways to get from one terminal to another. While you can walk or take a taxi, the most convenient way is to catch a free shuttle bus. They are easy to recognize with their bright yellow and blue colors.
Narita Shuttle Bus Timetable
Important: Be sure to allow plenty of time when using the shuttle service as buses may be delayed or canceled due to traffic congestion. Also, compensation is not available for missed connections to other means of transport (aircraft or rail, etc.) resulting from delayed or canceled bus services.
Please note that those heading into their quarantine period will not be able to use the free shuttle buses. Due to COVID-19, buses may be running less frequently. Please call and ask the airport beforehand or go to the bus station directly and confirm.
Train Transportation out of Narita
If you are leaving Narita Airport by train, you have two basic options to get to Tokyo: fast or cheap. For other transportation options, check here. Don’t hesitate to ask for the information counter about how to pay for your transportation fare.
|Option||Name||Destination||Time||1 adult (est.)|
|Fast||Keisei Skyliner||Nippori Station||36 mins||$20
($10 base fare + $10 Skyliner fare)
|Cheap||Narita Access||Tokyo Station / Ginza||90 mins||$10|
If you are heading into your quarantine period, you are not allowed to use public transportation (buses, trains, etc.).
Below is information provided by the Minstry of Health, Labor and Welfare in response to COVID-19.
We ask that those coming to Japan arrange their own means of transportation (personal car, rental car, etc.) from the airport. The use of public transportation such as trains, buses, taxis, planes (domestic flights), and passanger boats is strongly discouraged. Individuals who are coming to Japan using the Residence Track or the Business Track and have a written pledge should use the means of transportation listed on their written pledge (personal car, car provided by your company, rental car, car service companies, etc.), and not the buses provided by the quarantine station.
Get a Rechargeable Train Card (IC Card)
Japan is a country often regarded as the king of convenience, and this is clearly on display with their public transportation system. Have you ever heard of an IC card? If you haven’t, you definitely need get one for your trip as it will save you a lot of time and headaches. IC cards look like a credit card and act as a rechargeable train ticket that can be recharged at any train station in the greater Tokyo area. If you plan to travel outside of Tokyo, you may need to switch to paper tickets at some point, since both Suica and PASMO cards aren’t always accepted outside of Tokyo.
It doesn’t matter which card you get, because Suica and PASMO can be recharged at each other’s ticket terminals and can be used at any train station in Tokyo.
Where can you use an IC card?
- Public transportation
- Vending machines
- Some shops and convenience stores
- Some restaurants
The card itself costs around $5 USD, plus the amount you decide to add to it. It’s possible to get back the $5 as well as any remaining credit by returning the card to a train station clerk (go to a JR station for Suica and any other station for PASMO).
Earlier we mentioned Portable WiFi and SIM Card rental services at Narita Airport. Having the internet on the go is not only lifesaving but it can offer you a side of Japan you might never have experienced without it. Let’s dig in a bit more on how the internet can make your trip to Japan easy and stress-free.
Are you staying in Japan for less than 28 days?
If so, you’re the perfect candidate for “Welcome Suica” new IC cards made especially for tourists.
This IC card is deposit free, available in different values: 1,000 JPY, 2,000 JPY, 3,000 JPY, 4,000 JPY, and 5,000 JPY.
Please note that the amount is not refundable.
Free WiFi in Japan
Free WiFi exists in Japan, but its reliability and accessibility for international travelers on a tight schedule is another story. Here is a shortlist of places that usually offer free WiFi hotspots in Japan (though you may need to buy something to sit down):
- Seven Eleven
- Some train stations
Useful Apps for Navigating Japan
A lot can get lost in translation, but the digital age is making it easy to travel to countries without knowing the language. Here’s our list of apps that can help you communicate, save time, and save money during your travels in Japan.
- Translate whatever you want to say or understand on the go
- Take a picture of Japanese words on menus, road signs, hotel documents, and Google Translate will tell you what they mean
- Speak into your smartphone’s microphone for voice translation, especially when typing takes too long
- Get directions from your location to any landmark or address
- Choose your transportation, from trains to subways, buses, bullet trains, and more
- Fares and travel time are displayed for easy management of your travel budget (if you aren’t using a JR Pass)
- Find the nearest restaurants for your favorite food
- Access thousands of customer reviews
- Post your reviews for fellow international travelers
- Japan’s answer to Yelp, Gurunavi offers thousands of restaurant options
- Access to English reservation support
- A great multi-function tool for traveling
- Currency converter, speech translator, weather forecast, and more
- Some features are even accessible without internet access
Get a Pocket WiFi / SIM Card at Narita Airport & Leave Your Stress
If you are entering Japan using the Residence Track, you will begin the quarantine period immediately after arriving in Japan. Therefore, you may not able to obtain a Japanese SIM card once they leave the airport.
With Sakura Mobile, you can pick up a Japanese SIM card at our pickup counters located in the arrival areas of various Japanese airports. If you are interested, please check out our plans.
Using any or all of our recommended apps will likely make your trip to Japan much more enjoyable and relaxing, but trying to find a free hotspot to use those apps won’t! This is why there are some great deals at Narita Airport on Pocket WiFi and compatible SIM Cards that international travelers can take advantage of right after they land.
The easiest way to rent a Pocket WiFi or SIM Card is to order online before traveling to Japan. That way you can easily compare plans from the comfort of your home, fly to Japan with peace of mind knowing that you will be able to get connected once you land, and then head straight to the designated counter at Narita Airport to pick it up — no contracts, no long lines!
The Sakura Mobile Difference
You have places to go and all of Japan to experience! Don’t waste your time getting lost in confusion.
At Sakura Mobile, we understand what international travelers need to make their trip in Japan stress-free, which is why we have simplified the process of getting a Pocket WiFi or SIM Card.
With our rental devices, you can travel across Japan — from Tokyo to Osaka and beyond — without worrying about losing a connection. We’ve made it even simpler for you with our easy Narita Airport pickup option that gives you both the Freedom and Quality of Service you deserve!
- Online ordering
- Many types of plans that match your needs
- Fast pickup at your preferred location
- Easy returns in any Japanese mailbox with the provided envelope
- Online top-up
- SIM compatibility
- No contract
- No activation fee
- Fast LTE data
- Biggest network in Japan
- Unlimited data
- Hotspot/tethering capability
- Full English support
- Trusted by thousands of travelers just like you
If you have extra questions about our services, please don’t hesitate to contact us here.
Our staff speak fluent English and will be happy to answer all your questions.
In the meantime, here’s what travelers have to say about Sakura Mobile.