Japan SIM Card – Internet on Your Phone the Easy Way
We are all lost without our phones. But don't fear - Japanese SIM Cards are cheap, reliable and easily purchased. A great option for your travels.
When travelling, one of the first things we all want to do after a long flight is turn on our mobile phones, latch onto the free WiFi and update our online status – whether Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or whatever else – letting our loved ones know where we are in the world.
As free WiFi isn’t as yet omnipresent throughout Japan, one of the most reliable options available to travelers is to rent a SIM card and reap the benefits of an internet connection anytime and anywhere.
What is a SIM Card?
A small electronic chip present in all phones, a SIM Card connects foreign travelers in Japan to the world. It is ideal if you want to benefit from access to 3G/4G LTE data from your own phone during your stay.
Japanese SIM cards usually provide only data, making and receiving calls is not part of the package. There are a few however which offer some extra features, sometimes including calling (not SMS). There are different rental plans for SIM cards depending on how much data you require. The SIM card is a good compromise for travelers who can’t afford Pocket WiFi and are undertaking a short-term trip in the country.
How to use your SIM card
There are a three different sizes of SIM card: standard size, Micro-SIM and Micro-Nano-SIM, which can fit any smartphone, simply replacing your usual SIM card. Your phone must be unlocked before using the SIM Card, so be careful before buying and make sure your phone is unlocked. You can ask your phone carrier to do this for you or phone unlocking services are available. Using the card is very simple: the SIM card is inserted into the device, activating the 3G/4G cellular connection,next you simply enter the code given to you by the service provider and off you go.
All SIM cards will require you to set up an Access Point Name (APN) in order to get a WiFi signal. Once the APN information data is entered correctly, the WiFi sign will appear and your social network presence will flicker back into life!
How and where to get your SIM Card
To get your SIM Card, you have many options depending on the carrier. The most common points of purchase are:
After your flight, trusting you are not too tired, you can head head to one of the on-site phone stores or kiosks. English speaking airport staff should be able to point you in the right direction but they are most commonly found around the vicinity of the arrivals and baggage pickup hall.
The Train Station:
Some of the bigger train stations (Shinjuku, Shibuya, Tokyo etc) are equip with SIM card vending machines. These machines remove the possible problem of language barrier from purchasing a SIM Card coming as they do with English selection options.
The Electronics Store:
There are a lot of electronics stores in Japan, especially in urban areas. Bic Camera and Yodobashi Camera are two of the largest, providing an array of electronics, including SIM Cards. You can ask a member of staff the whereabouts of the SIM Card section in English, but failing this, try the Japanese: shimukado wa doko ni arimasu ka? (where are the SIM Cards?) and that should do the trick.
Many SIM card carriers have their own shopping sites where you can easily buy your SIM card. The sites are generally multi-lingual: in English, Japanese and Chinese. For delivery, you can choose the airport, your hotel or a nearby post office.
We have selected for you the best SIM cards available in Japan for any need or budget. The comparative tabs will provide you with all the information needed about SIM cards in Japan:
|NTT Communications||Econnect||BMobile||COMST||Japan Travel SIM||So Net||U-mobile||Wirelessgate||Yokososim||SoftBank|
|SHORT TERM RENT||7 days: ¥3.218 |
14 days: ¥3.780
|7 days: 100MB: ¥2.680|
60 min/call+ 3GB data
¥ 2,204 for unlimited data only
¥2,980 1GB data
|Not provided ||Not Provided||7 days:|
200MB a day
3GB: AUD35 or €15
3.5GB: AUD40 or €20
|2 days: ¥90/min call + ¥900 (200MB)
7days: ¥9/min call +¥2.700 (700MB)
|LONG TERM RENT||Not provided||30 days: |
|Not Provided||30 days:|
¥3,780 3GB data
|30 days : 1GB|
3 months : 2GB
Price depends on location
|30 days : 1GB¥3.000; 2.2GB:|
60 days: 3GB: ¥5.000
180 days: 12GB:
¥12.288 (only on Amazon.co.jp)
¥3.500 200MB a day
|30 days: 2GB¥3.590|
|30 days: 4GB:|
AUD 45 or €25
|30 days: ¥90/min call + ¥4.980 (3GB)|
|TO BE EXTENDED||No||Yes||Yes within 10 days of the expiry from the previous plan||Yes|
3 GB for 30 days: 2,160 Yen 5 GB for 30 days: 3,456 Yen 10 GB for 30 days:
|extra data :|
|Yes||No||Yes ¥1000: 1GB (14 days)||No||No|
|WHERE TO BUY||Online|
|online ||Store provided on their website||Airport|
Store (selected countries)
Ebay Store and US/EU amazon
|DELIVERY AREA (FEE)||Airport|
|Airport (¥200) |
H.I.S. travel stores Yodobashi camera/BIC Camera.
|No delivery||No delivery||Free Worldwide|
|SPEED DATA||Up to 150 Mbps||Up to 200 Mbps||NC||Up 220 Mbps||Up to 200Mbps||Up to 200Mbps||Up to 200Mbps||Up to 150Mbps||Up to 200Mbps||Up to 200Mbps|