The one thing travelers in Japan always forget, and regret it when they need it most 

Don’t wait until it’s too late. Get this one thing, save your trip from a lot of headaches,
enjoy Japan to the fullest.

You’re planning your trip to the Land of the Rising Sun.
Looking at things to do, where to stay, what to experience.
It’s exciting.

But in that excitement, many people overlook getting something when they come to Japan. 
They will face with headaches like...

Getting to a destination

They have an address to a place they want to go, but the address system in Japan in notoriously confusing (even locals can’t make sense of it). They open google maps, type in the address - no signal. “Not connected to the internet” appears. 

Translating it into your language

They talk with a local and need to translate English into Japanese. They open google translate on your phone
- no response. 

Will you have safe, reliable internet when you need it most?

While Japan seems like a tech-nirvana, there are some things that may surprise you.

Free Wifi is notoriously hard to find

Aside from big chains like McDonald’s and Starbucks, most places don’t offer free wifi. Or if they do, you have to pay for it.


Public wifi is frustratingly slow

In big cities like Tokyo, you can connect to public-access wifi outside. But because of the number of people, the internet is incredibly slow, if you can even connect to it.


Even if you connect, you can’t sign up

Even if you could connect to public-access, free wifi, most places require email authentication. Type in your email address, and click “sign up” to send a confirmation email to your inbox… which requires internet to open.


You should be able to enjoy your experience of Japan without frustrating experiences like these.

Save the headache with a SIM card

For all people visiting Japan, we recommend they get a SIM card.
Getting a SIM card has an up-front cost, but it will save you a lot of time and frustration.

No more "I'm lost"

You won’t need to worry about getting lost

SNS in Realtime

You’ll be able to share your experience in real time on Instagram

Translation

You’ll be able to translate things wherever you go

Voice Calling

You’ll have the peace of mind knowing that you can call help at any time

So… which SIM card should you get?

You want to get a SIM card locally in Japan. But there are so many… which do you choose?
On Amazon Japan, type in “sim card” and you get over 80,000 results

Here Are Best 3 Options!

Out of the 80,000+ SIM cards, we’ve found three that are the best options for international travelers in Japan.
They offer flexible plans at reasonable cost, use one of big-three networks, the convenience for pick-up/shipping and English support. 

Provider

For Who?

Cost

Data

Call/

Text

Unlimited

shipping/ pick up

English Support

Sim return

LInk

Mobal

For the professional who needs to work during their visit.

Learn more (Click)

Sakura mobile

For the cost-concerned traveler.

Learn more

(Click)

Sim card geek

For the light user who cares most about convenience.

Learn more

(Click)

Provider

MOBAL

SAKURA MOBILE

SIM CARD GEEK

FOR WHO?

For the professional who needs to work during their visit.

For the cost-concerned traveler.

For the light user who cares most about convenience.

Value for money

DATA

CALL/TEXT

UNLIMITED

SHIPPING/PICK UP

ENGLISH SUPPORT

SIM RETURN

LINK

Learn more (Click)

Will you need Voice calling with your SIM?

Some travelers will need wifi access only, while others will need an actual phone number for voice calling. How do you know which one you will need?

Communicating with restaurants, Ryokans/hotels, airlines and travel agencies

Troubles always come with travels. When you are late for a dinner reservation, when you are late for your flight, when you have a question about a tour you are joining, and when you are late for the check-in time to Ryokan, it is much easier to handle the situation if you can make a phone call.

Using apps

Some apps require an authentication using phone call or text/SMS, especially if you practice 2-step authentication. I had a problem in Taiwan using Gmail. Google automatically logged me out maybe because I was in a country I had never been, but I forgot the password. I needed a Taiwanese phone number to authenticate myself. I was fortunate to have a local friend who let me use her phone number, but it would have been a big problem.

If this sounds like you, then getting M​obal would be best. Take a look at our recommendation below.

Recommendation by Use Case

Data + Voice

If you need to text and call, the best option is "I'm your Japan Unlimited SIM card" by Mobal. It is the cheapest option and you get the unlimited data. Deal.

Provider

SIM card Name

Days

Data (GB)

Total Cost

Mobal

I`m your Japan Unlimited SIM

30

Unlimited

¥ 7,500

Sakura mobile

SAKURA Voice + SIM

30

3

¥ 7,980

SAKURA MOBILE

SAKURA Voice + SIM

30

5

¥ 8,980

SAKURA MOBILE

SAKURA Voice + SIM

30

7

¥ 9,980

Mobal

I`m your Japan Unlimited SIM

60

Unlimited

¥ 12,000

1 Week In Japan

MOBAL Japan Tourist Data SIM 8 days plan is the best option. Although it is not the cheapest, you will get the unlimited data at just ¥500.

Provider

SIM card Name

Days

Data (GB)

Total Cost

SIM Card Geek

Japan SIM Card

8

8

¥ 3,480

Sakura mobile

SAKURA Travel SIM

8

3

¥ 3,900

MOBAL

Japan Tourist Data SIM

8

Unlimited

¥ 3,990

SAKURA MOBILE

SAKURA Travel SIM

8

10

¥ 7,400

2 Weeks In Japan

If you are a really light internet user and go for the 3GB option, Sakura Mobile Travel SIM 16 days - 3GB plan is for you.
But if you use Maps, Web browsers, and apps, you will need more than 5 GB. If this is the case for you, I recommend Mobal Tourist Data SIM 16 days and you get unlimited data.

Provider

SIM card Name

Days

Data (GB)

Total Cost

Sakura mobile

SAKURA Travel SIM

16

3

¥ 4,300

Sakura mobile

SAKURA Travel SIM

16

5

¥ 5,300

SIM CARD GEEK

Japan SIM Card

16

16

¥ 5,480

Mobal

Japan Tourist Data SIM

16

Unlimited

¥ 5,990

Sakura mobile

SAKURA Travel SIM

16

10

¥ 7,800

1 Month In Japan

10 GB is the common data usage for travelers. If you stay in Japan for 2-4weeks, SIM Card Geek's 30 days/10GB plan is the most reasonable plan.
But if you are a heavy user (tethering, uploading photos/videos), we still recommend choosing Mobal “I'm your Japan Unlimited SIM card”.

Provider

SIM card Name

Days

Data (GB)

Total Cost

SIM Card Geek

Japan Data SIM Card

30

7

¥ 4,490

SIM CARD GEEK

Japan Data SIM Card

30

10

¥ 5,490

Sakura Mobile

SAKURA Travel SIM

30

5

¥ 6,980

Mobal

Japan Tourist Data SIM

31

Unlimited

¥ 7,490

MOBAL

I'm your Japan Unlimited (with Voice Calling)

30

Unlimited

¥ 7,500

Get your SIM card before its gone (sooner than you think)

As the number of visitors to Japan is growing much more than the industry expects, SIM cards getting sold out sooner and sooner.

As a rule of thumb, you should buy your SIM card once you buy your flight ticket.

If you are 1 - 3 months before your travel, buy one soon.
If you will arrive in Japan within a month, you should order it now before they get sold out.

All the SIM card providers introduced in this article ship it to your home or where you want it to be shipped, so you can order early and keep it until your travel.

If you are not ready to buy one yet, save this article in your bookmark for your future reference.