An important aspect of planning a trip is the way you move from one place to another. We normally use public transport. And that’s what we decided to do in Tokyo, more precisely to use the subway. It’s just that the first time I saw his map, I felt lost …
It’s just that slowly, slowly I started to document myself and gain courage, and now I can tell you that using the Tokyo subway was even easier for me than using the one in my city. This is because the Japanese are better than anyone else at making simple, concise and very efficient signage.
Don’t miss it either No tipping in Japan!
But why to use Tokyo metro? You have easy access to major tourist spots.You can reach the most popular places in Tokyo by Tokyo subway, such as Sensoji Temple (Asakusa), scramble (Shibuya), Kabukicho (Shinjuku), Tsukiji Market (Tsukiji), Kabuki-za (Higashi-ginza) and Tokyo Tower (Kamiyacho). Trains come very often, so you don’t have to wait long for the next train. On major lines during rush hour in the morning and evening, trains come every 2-3 minutes. The subway is connected directly underground to popular tourist sites such as Tokyo Skytree and Roppongi Hills, so you can reach them without getting wet on rainy days.
You have an easy acces from airports to Tokyo metro:
Welcome Boards, which are located in stations near popular tourist spots, assist visitors with using the Tokyo Metro subway and to provide directions to tourist attractions. Welcome Boards are available in English, Chinese, Korean and Japanese so first-time visitors to Tokyo can get around with peace of mind. You can pick up a leaflet which explains the basics of Tokyo subways and how to ride the subway as well as a handbook which provides tourist information. You can find Tokyo’s most popular areas and the different ways to get there. Free WI-FI is available at most Tokyo metro stations, so you can stay connected when you are underground. Tokyo metro offers a free application that enables users to search transfer information for the Tokyo Subway network (Tokyo Metro and Toei Subway).
Tokyo Metro and Toei Subway operate the subways in Tokyo. At the entrance to each station, you will see the subway sign and the name of the subway station. Be sure to remember the station name, number and line color (circular colored outline) of the subway line you want to ride. You will see the combination of a letter (representing the line) and a number (representing the station) within a circular colored outline (representing the color of the line), which is called a station number. When you get to the station, confirm the way to the subway line with the overhead sign. You will see line symbol and the name of the subway line that could help guide you to the fare gate. Be sure to follow the arrow to go to the appropriate subway line.
For buying your ticket, first, search for the fare to your destination.
You can search for it using the English fare chart located close to the ticket vending machines. You can also search for your fare using a fare search system or a smartphone app. After finding your fare, buy your ticket at the ticket vending machine. Touch the “Ticket” button and touch on your fare amount. Then insert coins and/or bills into the ticket vending machine to purchase your ticket. You can buy tickets to your destination without finding the fare by using one of the ticket vending machine’s convenient features. You can also buy transfer tickets onto JR and other railway lines. Insert your ticket into the slot located above the green arrow on the fare gate. Please do not forget to take your ticket as you pass through.
If you are using a PASMO card, hold the card over the card reader on the gate, which is indicated by a blue light and has the “IC” logo on the panel. You will hear a beep sound the moment your card is read. Find your platform by looking for your train line and its direction on the sign. The sign shows the direction with numbers and station names along with main stops of each direction. Be sure to wait for the train at the appropriate platform by confirm the number of the platform. Line up behind the white line on the platform at the guides which indicate where the doors will open when the train arrives. Wait for the alighting passengers to get off before boarding the train. Please do not rush when trying to catch the train. Inside the train You can check the station you are currently at or which station you are heading to, and how long there is left until your destination on the information displays above the train doors.
When you get off the train, look at the direction board to find the right gate and exit number in order to go to your destination. If you traveled further than the ticket you bought allows, you can pay the extra fare at a fare adjustment machine located near the fare gates. When you place your ticket into the machine, it will display the fare difference you owe. After inserting the difference, take your ticket and pass through the fare gate. When traveling with a regular ticket, the gate will not return your ticket. However, when using a 1-day Open Ticket, be sure to take it as you pass through the gate. some subway stations, you must pass through the fare gates when transferring lines, even when they are both Tokyo Metro lines. In that case, when changing from one Tokyo Metro line to another, pass through the special orange transfer gates.
If you take longer than 30 minutes to change trains, you will need to purchase a new ticket. However, when using a PASMO card, be aware that the appropriate fare will be deducted automatically the next time you pass through an entrance gate. After exiting the fare gate, you can find your exit number on the yellow exit signs and on the vicinity map. After finding your exit number, follow the appropriate exit signs. All signs are written in both Japanese and English.
And it’s about the same story with Japanese trains …