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Transportation in Tokyo


Taxis line up outside major stations and can be hailed on the street. An illuminated red sign on the lower left corner of the windscreen indicates the taxi is free. Make sure you have your destination written in Japanese.


Buses are not the best way of getting around if you do not speak the language as destinations are written in Japanese only and English is not widely spoken.


The extensive metro network is by far the easiest way to get around Tokyo. All station names are written in both Japanese and the Roman alphabet and trains are immaculate, punctual, and safe. Arrive at any major station at rush hour to experience being pushed into a packed carriage by a man in white gloves.


Walking is the most enjoyable way to explore individual districts. Join the swarms of people crossing at the junction in front of Shibuya station, while enormous television screens blare above you.

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Tokyo traffic flows on the left-hand side. In contrast to the city’s ultra-efficient public transport, the roads and expressways are often congested, and you’ll have to pay toll charges of up to 1400 yen on several routes. With little parking and high CO2 emissions, park-and-ride sites are becoming increasingly prevalent.

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Transportation tips

Day passes give unlimited travel son all Metro lines and can be bought on the day or in advance. You can use a Japan Rail Pass (for travel around the country and for sale only outside Japan) on JR trains in Tokyo, but not on metro or private railway lines. Suica and PASMO stored-value cards work on both the JR and metro lines.

Tokyo Metro Website

JR Website

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