Japan is a fascinating place to visit, with a wonderfully rich culture and plenty of beautiful places to see. The capital of Japan, Tokyo, is especially popular with tourists. In just one city, you can fill your itinerary with trips to historic temples, museums, and gardens and eat some of the best food on earth.
Naturally, you’ll want to stay connected on the go, so you’ll be looking for available internet options. One of those options is to rent a pocket Wi-Fi router in Japan that lets you surf the internet no matter where you are. The most cost-efficient option, however, is to search for places that offer free Wi-Fi—because nothing beats FREE, especially in an expensive city like Tokyo.
Below is a list of places you can expect to find Wi-Fi hotspots:
Going online is quick and easy inside two of the major airports found in Tokyo: Narita International Airport and Haneda Airport. They do provide free unprotected connection; for security-protected access, however, they’ll charge you a fee.
Some higher-end hotels in Tokyo may charge guests for a 24-hour internet connection, but internet access is free of charge in almost all other hotels in the city. To make your search easier, below is a list of the top 10 hotels in Tokyo with free Wi-Fi, according to TripAdvisor:
- Grand Nikko Tokyo Daiba
- Hotel Gracery Shinjuku
- Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo
- Millennium Mitsui Garden Hotel Tokyo
- Cerulean Tower Tokyu Hotel
- Park Hotel Tokyo
- Tobu Hotel Levant Tokyo
- Mitsui Garden Hotel Ginza Premier
- The Royal Park Hotel Tokyo Shiodome
- Hotel Metropolitan Tokyo Ikebukuro
JR East Free Wi-Fi: There is free internet connection in all Yamanote Line stations, although you are limited to just 3 hours every time you log in. Once the time expires, simply log in again and you’re good to go.
JR West Free Wi-Fi: Just as you would find in east service trains, Japan Rail West also has free Wi-Fi. There are some areas where connecting doesn’t happen automatically. In this case, simply send an email—even a blank one—to firstname.lastname@example.org. The guest code is then delivered to your email. Once you receive it, connect to a JR West hotspot, enter the guest code and you can now enjoy the perks of being online.
NTT East Free Wi-Fi Japan: Connecting to this hotspot gives you internet access for an impressive 14 days. You will need to download the NAVITIME application on your phone, then present your passport at any of these locations: airports, department stores, tourist offices, and some hotels. They will then give you a card with an ID and password to use with the application.
Tokyo is filled with convenience stores. In fact, you can’t walk for more than 10 minutes without running into one. And the best part is that a lot of them, especially the larger chains like 7-Eleven and Family Mart, usually have free Wi-Fi. Just bear in mind that some stores may have restrictions. You may only be allowed to connect a few times a day, and internet speeds may not be as fast as in other places.
If you’re someone who frequently needs a caffeine fix, you’ll be happy to know that Starbucks and Tully’s usually have free Wi-Fi. Of course, other coffee shops in Tokyo can have them too, but there’s a bigger chance that they do have it in bigger chains.
You may be wondering now: “Why don’t they have more places in Tokyo that offer free Wi-Fi? Isn’t Japan supposed to be one of the most technologically advanced countries in the world?” The answer is simple. The Japanese don’t usually need free Wi-Fi. Their mobile networks are just so good (and not to mention fast) that they rarely have a need to look for free Wi-Fi services.
However, to make the experience more convenient for tourists, the country is slowly working on improving its free internet service. So who knows? Maybe in a couple more years, everyone can enjoy everything the city has to offer while staying connected the entire time.
To read more on topics like this, check out the travel category.