The best way to Go About Shopping for a SIM Card in Japan


Not so way back, the difficulty of pay as you go SIM playing cards in Japan was a null-and-void one—it wasn’t doable for foreigners in Japan to buy a SIM card outright, no less than on a vacationer visa or exemption. It was just for foreigners with authorized residence that purchasing a SIM card in Japan was a risk; others wanted to lease a Japanese Wi-Fi unit with a purpose to keep continuously linked to the web throughout their Japan journeys.

The excellent news is that you would be able to now purchase a knowledge SIM card in Japan, whatever the means by which you enter the nation. There are some issues to bear in mind, nevertheless, so be certain that to learn this text fastidiously earlier than your airplane touches down, whether or not on your journey to Japan purchase SIM or SIM card rental Japan makes extra sense.

I’ll even be talking intimately about Okinawa SIM card choices, so that you received’t wish to scroll away simply but when you’re sure for that exact paradise!)

Can Foreigners Purchase SIM Playing cards in Japan?

Gone are the times when foreigners had been compelled to purchase Japan cellular Wi-Fi unit, or cope with less-than-stellar Wi-Fi protection at Japanese lodges and in public locations, which has additionally fortunately elevated). Shopping for a SIM card in Japan is notably not as straightforward as in different Asian nations, equivalent to Taiwan and Hong Kong, nor as low cost as in nations like Thailand and Singapore.

So is it now a free-for-all in terms of foreigners buying SIM playing cards in Japan?Not precisely. There are some vital restrictions of which try to be conscious, which I’m going to enter under.

Restrictions on Japan SIMs for Foreigners

The various SIM card Japan customer packages share one essential characteristic: Japan vacationer SIMs are for information solely, although some help you obtain textual content messages. Placing a Japan SIM in your cellphone received’t allow you to make cellphone calls, or to ship messages through SMS. Presumably, it’s because no matter authorized hurdle that beforehand prevented foreigners from utilizing a SIM pay as you go card Japan for information was simpler to elevate than the one for voice and textual content.

The native SIM card Japan gives additionally has restricted validity. When you can return with SIMs for a lot of different nations many occasions and use them over the course of some years (even when the package deal says in any other case), Japanese SIMs solely work for so long as they point out on the packaging. Moreover, activating your Japan SIM entails a tedious course of, one which requires you to be linked to WiFi whilst you do it.

Reserve Your Japan Information SIM On-line

The simplest option to get a SIM card in Japan is to pre-book a Japan Docomo SIM card from Klook, a well-liked journey company in Asia, on-line. While you select one in every of these SIM card choices, you possibly can select one in every of practically a dozen pick-up factors and choose many day by day information allowances, together with limitless Japan SIM card information for a interval of as much as eight days.

The worth of a Japan SIM card is a bit decrease on-line, no less than in my expertise. Costs for SIM playing cards in Japan purchased by means of Klook begin at round ¥900, whereas I bear in mind paying ¥4,000 on the bottom for an Okinawa SIM card (one with a really restricted information allowance, no much less—I’ll converse extra about that facet of the Okinawa information SIM card) final 12 months.

Different Methods to Purchase a Japan SIM

Japan SIM Card Merchandising Machine

I purchased my aforementioned SIM at a Naha Airport SIM card pay as you go merchandising machine at a monorail station. I’ve seen these machines throughout Japan, from airports in Tokyo and prepare stations within the Kansai area, and whereas they’re uniformly handy, additionally they appear (no less than in terms of the SIM Card Okinawa machines promote) to be considerably greater priced than the SIMs you guide on-line and severely restricted your information as nicely—I alluded to this a couple of paragraphs in the past.

Japan Journey Company

When you dwell in a metropolis that has a JTB Journey Company, you could possibly purchase your SIM on the company’s workplace. This is usually a notably handy proposition when you additionally have to buy a Japan Rail Cross, one thing that JTB shops promote along with SIM playing cards for journey in Japan.

Japan SIM Card on the Airport

Shopping for a Japan information SIM card at an airport cellular service desk, be it Narita or Haneda airport or a Naha airport SIM card, can be doable, although you by no means know when this can stop to be the case, given the nation’s proclivity for paperwork and complication. For my part, it’s all the time a good suggestion to guide your SIM earlier than you journey when you can, even when you go the old-school route and select a Japan SIM card rental, or when you’re available in the market for an Okinawa SIM card.

Different FAQ About Japan SIM Playing cards

Which SIM is greatest in Japan?

Docomo and Softbank are the preferred mobile networks in Japan, with the widest protection, however in actuality you may not be capable to select with firm you utilize. That is very true when you’re a foreigner, as you might be restricted to pick from among the many pay as you go choices obtainable on-line and once you land.

How can a foreigner get a SIM card in Japan?

When you’re visiting as a vacationer, you may get a SIM card upon arrival in Japan; you too can order one on-line and choose it up on the airport. When you’re residing in Japan and want to signal a contract, the method will probably be far more difficult.

How can I purchase a Japanese SIM card?

As a vacationer, you should buy a Japanese SIM card in one in every of two methods. One possibility is to order one on-line, both for supply to you in your house nation or for choose up on the airport the place you arrive in Japan. The opposite manner is to easily wait till you land and purchase one at the moment.

The Backside Line

Searching for the place to purchase SIM card in Japan? Shopping for a SIM card in Japan is not solely doable, however comparatively easy. Nonetheless, there are some vital factors to bear in mind, notably as they relate to restrictions locations on Japan pay as you go SIM playing cards. Furthermore, there are some benefits to reserving your SIM card upfront of your arrival to Japan, so think about these fastidiously as your flight to Japan approaches, whether or not you rent me to plan your journey, or put your personal Japan itinerary.

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