Going to Japan for your initial journey can be really exciting and a little stressful. But don’t worry, technology is here to assist in lessening that stress. These are some of the best Japan travel apps that can make your trip smoother and assist in avoiding certain travel issues.
Even if you don’t understand Japanese, traveling in Japan is quite simple. Just ensure you have internet access while you’re there (via Pocket WiFi or a tourist SIM), so you can utilize the important Japan travel apps listed below.
Best Travel Apps for Travel in Japan You Should Have on Your Mobile Device
Check out the list of best apps for traveling in Japan below:
If you’re picking just one app for your stay in Japan, make it Google Maps. I enjoy using Google Maps to plan my trips, but it’s more than just a tool for getting ready before your journey.
Google Maps is super handy in Japan since it offers detailed directions. It even tells you when the subways and trains come, and which platform to go to. Especially in big cities like Tokyo and Osaka, having current info about public transportation makes getting around a lot simpler.
Suica Card on mobile
Alright, this is a bit different from getting an app, but it’s a must-do before you go to Japan. To ride public transportation, like subways, in Japan, you can use a special card (called Suica or Pasmo).
Instead of buying new tickets every time you ride the subway (trust me, you’ll be doing it a lot!), you can just tap when you enter and exit each station. The card will automatically deduct the right fare, saving you a lot of time.
You can grab a physical Suica card at any train or subway station in Tokyo. But you can also put it on your Apple Wallet (if you have an iPhone). You can add money to it on your phone and use your phone to tap in and out at stations. This makes getting around big cities so much simpler – especially since you can only add cash to the physical card.
Japan Travel by NAVITIME
If Google Maps isn’t your thing, but you want a map that works without an internet connection in Japan, give Japan Travel by NAVITIME a look. This app not only guides you on the best routes, but it’s also a goldmine for planning your Japan adventure, finding ATM/WiFi spots, making bookings, and more.
Alongside Google Maps and adding the Suica card to your phone, getting this app is a key step before heading to Japan. You don’t need all the Japan travel apps listed below, but they can definitely simplify your Japan trip.
Indulging in the finest Japanese cuisine is a highlight of your time in Japan. Therefore, selecting the right places to eat during your stay is crucial. That’s where GuruNavi comes in – it’s a handy app for travelers in Japan, aiding you in discovering the ideal restaurant nearby. You can utilize filters to locate the kind of food you desire, stick within your budget, and even see if they have English-speaking staff or menus.
Love digging into a hot bowl of delicious ramen? That’s surely something you’re eagerly anticipating during your trip to Japan. But how do you figure out which ramen place to head to and which to skip?
Ramen Beast is here to assist you in locating the finest ramen joints in Japan (no tourist traps, no chains, just authentic spots). It features over 700 top-notch ramen shops in Tokyo, and it even offers suggestions in English on what dishes to try. Plus, you can delve into restaurant reviews and learn about the chef’s background, unique ingredients, and more.
While journeying across Japan, you might find yourself lugging around a good amount of stuff. Usually, that’s not an issue since you can leave your belongings in your hotel room or request the hotel staff to keep them safe before or after checking out. However, if these choices aren’t available, you can try out Ecbo Cloak. With this app, you can find a spot close by to store your items, leave your luggage there, make the payment, and retrieve it when you’re ready. It’s really straightforward!
Here’s another fantastic app for your Japan adventure: Google Translate. Now, you might be wondering how this could be useful. Well, Google Translate won’t exactly make you fluent in Japanese, but it has this really cool photo tool that can translate restaurant menus.
While lots of places in the major cities do offer menus in English, it’s not guaranteed everywhere. That’s why this photo trick can be super helpful!
Even if you manage to pick up a few simple Japanese phrases before your Japan trip, becoming fluent in the language isn’t a walk in the park. That’s why grabbing VoiceTra is a smart move! This nifty app can turn spoken words – either yours or the person you’re chatting with – into translations in your chosen language (yes, even Japanese!).
Memrise or Duolingo
If you’re up for boosting your language skills and jumping into learning Japanese, you can find some of the best apps for travel in Japan to begin your journey. I’ve got a comprehensive guide on mastering Japanese, but before you invest in textbooks and adorable stationery, you might want to begin with Memrise or Duolingo.
Both of these are fantastic tools for beginners, helping you learn Hiragana and Katakana (two essential Japanese alphabets) as well as some basic words. If you find yourself wanting to dive deeper, buy books like Genkii or Japanese for Busy People, instead.
Japan official travel app
And don’t forget, the official app from the Japan National Travel Organization is also in the running for the top travel apps for your Japan journey. This app is truly a must-have, especially if this is your maiden voyage to Japan. Packed with loads of helpful info, current travel write-ups, directions to reach the places you’re keen on visiting, simple ways to purchase tickets or passes, and more. It even lets you search offline to discover the closest WiFi spots, tourist centers, stations, and hospitals.
Make Traveling Easier with the Best Japan Travel Apps
Discovering the incredible world of Japan through travel is both thrilling and sometimes challenging. Fortunately, a range of fantastic apps can transform your journey into a seamless adventure. From navigating with Google Maps to feasting on ramen with Ramen Beast, and even learning Japanese with VoiceTra and Memrise or Duolingo, these apps make the experience truly unforgettable.
So, whether it’s savoring local cuisine, deciphering menus, or embracing the language, these tools have your back. And don’t overlook the official Japan National Travel Organization app – your ultimate travel companion, ensuring you explore Japan effortlessly, even offline.