When you are visiting Japan, you may have find out the hard way that there really isn’t that much free WiFi here and your lack of internet access may cause you to panic. Don’t worry because there are plenty of affordable prepaid sim cards to get you through your trip. Keep in mind that not all of these options will work with any phone. You should definitely check to see if any of the sim options on our list will work on your device by viewing the individual websites or calling ahead. You should also keep in mind that because you are coming from a foreign network, you will need to have an unlocked phone, I have seen many visitors leave the electronics store disappointed because the staff wouldn’t sell them a sim card due to their phone being locked.
One final thing to note is that, you aren’t able to get a voice sim in Japan without a resident card unless you go through one of the major carriers like Softbank or Docomo. So if you aren’t living here, it may be hard to make any phone calls without using an alternative app. Don’t worry though, emergency services will still be available with a data only sim.
While the following sim cards are not the only options, this list will provide you with a few easy to find and simple options to get going if you are arriving to Japan without a lot of time. We suggest that you take a look at some of the other sim options available to find the right one for you, your budget and your traveling experience.
Where to Buy a SIM Card in Japan
You can buy most of these sims at BIC Camera or Yodobashi Camera, some of them can be purchased online and delivered to your hotel or picked up at the post office or airport. There are stores to buy SIM Cards all over Japan, so be sure to find a location prior to arriving. Shibuya and Shinjuku are major areas so it should be easy finding any SIM Card.
Different SIM Cards in Japan
There is a wide variety of plans and companies selling tourist-friendly SIM Cards, be sure to check your option and find the correct SIM Card that matches your needs.
#1. NTT DOCOMO
NTT DoCoMo is one of the largest networks in Japan. The service is fast and reliable, since the network is so big you don’t have to worry about no service in distant areas. There is maximum data speeds of 262.5 Mbps and users are limited to 100MB per day. There are two different version to meet your needs. You can purchase this SIM Card at various locations such as at airports, ports, bus terminals, train stations, tourist information centers, convenience stores, electronic retail stores and travel agencies.
3,218 yen for 7 day version
3,780 yen for 14 day version
Website: NTT DoCoMo
U-mobile by U-Next is another MVNO using the NTT DoCoMo network on 3G and LTE. This SIM Card can be conveniently purchased at Narita International Airport from a vending machine. The card can not be topped up and it will expire once past the usage period. The U-Mobile SIM Card provides data speeds of up to 225 Mbps on 4G/LTE. The SIM Card is a little more expensive to buy at Narita compared to Yodobashi.
1,800 yen for 7 day version
2,800 yen for 15 day version
3,500 yen for 30 day version
#3. eConnect Japan Inc
The Japan Prepaid SIM is offered by eConnect Japan Inc. The SIM is supported by a special app that helps users manage their plan and they provide 24-hour customer support service. The eConnect Japan Inc can be purchased online at their website, it can be delivered to hotels, post offices at major airports, or any Japanese postal address (including private apartments) in 2-4 days without additional fees. When purchased directly from the official site, the only payment method is Paypal. If you would like to have it shipped worldwide, then purchasing on Amazon might be a better option.
2,980 yen for 7 day version (100 MB/day)
3,680 yen for 15 day version (100 MB/day)
4,480 yen for 30 day version (100 MB/day)
1,200 yen for 7 day version (500 MB)
3,480 yen for 15 day version (1 GB)
2,800 yen for 30 day version (2 GB)
5,480 yen for 30 day version (3 GB)
7,480 yen for 30 day version (5 GB)
Website: eCCONNECT Japan Inc
B-Mobile SIM Cards can be purchased at AEON, Yodobashi or Bic Camera chains, or even online from Amazon. The SIM Cards purchased online can be delivered to hotels, post offices at major airports, or any Japanese address in 2–4 days. Note that the 21 days start with your selected delivery date for online purchases, not on first use or activation in the handset.
Price: 3,223 yen for 21 day version (5 GB)
Website: B Mobile
#5. IIJImio Japan Travel SIM
The IIJImio Japan Travel SIM can be found at all Bic Camera and Yodobashi stores throughout Japan. This SIM Card can be ordered online prior to arrival and then delivered to any location in Japan, plus post offices, airports, hotels and a private address with additional postage. This is a well-known and reliable company, although they only offer two different types of SIM cards. If you run out of data, more can be purchased, 1,100 yen for 500 MB and 2,200 yen for 1.25 GB. The price of this SIM Card varies based on retailer but it is usually about 4,000 yen.
2,460 yen for 30 day version (1 GB)
3,790 yen for 3 month version (2 GB)
Website: IIJImio Japan Travel SIM