Travelling tips before you visit Tokyo for the Summer 2020 Games
There are two major airports in Tokyo city.Haneda Airport that is the oldest one, yet closer to the center of Tokyo, offers domestic and international flights and is connected by monorail the city center. Narita International airport is the new International airport of Tokyo, where most international flights arrive. It is about an hour and a half drive to the center of Tokyo, or alternatively, travelers may choose to take Narita Express or Keisei Skyliner trains that easily connect with many metro and train stops of Tokyo.
Getting around Tokyo - Transportation
Metro and train
As soon as you arrive in Tokyo, you will realize that the extensive rail network provides a wonderful alternative to driving around. Tokyo has over 900 train stations, and about 62 electric train lines, ensuring a safe and clean network of trains and subways for all residents and travelers. Upon arrival in Tokyo, the best way to use the metro are prepaid cards that you can buy in metro stations. You can choose among Suica cards, sold at JR stations and Pasmo cards, sold at non-JR stations. Once you charge your cards you can use it to easily enter and exit stations and when the money runs out, you can easily recharge it at any counter or automatic machine.
Click here to access the Tokyo Subway map: https://www.tokyometro.jp/en/subwaymap/index.html
Everybody loves walking around and it is indeed the best way to get to know with a city but be cautious, Tokyo is larger than you think. Train stations might seem close to each other on a map but walking from one station to the “neighboring” station on paper may easily take you 30 minutes walking. So plan ahead and use the metro on a day you feel tired.
Although not the flattest city in the world, you will see some people cycling in Tokyo. Renting a bike is possible and you can also borrow bikes in given spots (near Ginza or Marunouchi). Keep in mind that there are no cycle paths, and cyclers are expected to ride on the road and fully respect traffic rules.
Practical and quite easy to find, taxis are a good alternative for all guests not willing to drive (remember: driving in Tokyo is on the left side of the road). Note that fairs are quite high thought and make sure to take a note with the address you are going to in Japanese as most drivers do not speak English.
Tokyo also has an extensive bus network yet you need to study in advance your points of origin and destination as routes are complicated. Fare payment is on board so make sure you have cash.
Voltage in Tokyo and Japan in general is 100 Volt. European travelers (230V) should bring their adaptors while travelers from North America (120V) should note that although their outlets will fit, Japanese electrical plugs are not all polarized.
Guests will find everything they wish for in Tokyo. Depending on taste and desire, visitors have plenty of choices. Travelers that are looking for a walk around the most fashionable high-end shops, including all shorts of brands from around the world should head to Ginza. But if you are staying in neighborhoods like Shibuya or Shinjuku or Ikebukuro, you will also have plenty of perfectly equipped department stores. Guests seeking for electronics should pay a visit to Akihabara market, while book lovers can pay a visit to Kanda and specifically the vicinity of Meiji University (over 100 shops selling second hand books). Many sporting good stores are also in Kanda.