Things to Know Before Traveling to Japan

Simple Tips to Know Before You Travel to Japan

Traveling across Asia is always fascinating and interesting. Japan has always been a top tourist destination. In this country you will meet a balanced combination of modern advancements as well as ancient history and outstanding culture. It differs a lot from American or European cultures and lifestyle so it’s going to be a lifetime adventure.

If you have decided to visit this amazing country then this article is definitely for you. Down below you will discover the most interesting facts about their country that will come in handy during your trip. So read carefully as in this article we will tell you more about:

  • safety;
  • money;
  • communication;
  • transportation;
  • other useful tips that will be useful while traveling to Japan.

Let’s get started!


The main thing to mention about Japan is that it’s one of the safest countries in the world, so you have nothing to worry about. It will be even secure enough to travel solo even for females.


You have to get more cash as almost everything is paid with cash. Of course, you can use your credit card in hotels, restaurants and shops but not all of them will accept it. Japanese people prefer cash over credit cards, so the main advice will be to get enough cash for the whole trip. It will be required in case you decide visit some distant cities and villages to better explore the local culture.


Before going to Japan it would be great if you learn a few basic phrases that will help you in some situations when English is not an option. In fact, English is not that widely spoken in the country. You can purchase a pocket phrase book that will also come in handy. However, it’s better to use modern technologies if you need translate English to Japanese.

It will allow you to easily translate phrases to find understanding with local people as well as to get pictures and photos translated (menus e.g.) and even real-time verbal conversations. Make sure to upload a translation app or use it online as it will certainly facilitate your life.


Public transportation is pretty expensive in Japan but overseas visitors will get an amazing opportunity to use unlimited rail pass during their staying. There are 3 types of passes for 7, 14 and 21 days. Choose the one depending on how long you will remain in the country.

No Tipping

One really interesting thing about Japan is you don’t need to tip as there is no such tradition in their country. Don’t even try to give money to waiters, drivers, bartenders as they can feel insulted because of this common for us gesture. To make you feel better, you should know that the service price will be already included in your bill.

Trash Cans Are Rare Things

You won’t be able to find trash cans everywhere in the city, so be ready to keep all the garbage in your pockets. The main advice will be to get a small plastic bag with you all the time so you can leave all garbage there and hold it until you find a public trash can.


The best investment will be purchasing a pocket Wi-Fi. It will literally save your life as Tokyo is a huge city where you can easily get lost. It will definitely come in handy if you are planning to travel solo. You will be able to use maps and find bearings easier and faster as well as use your social media to communicate when needed.

Be Ready to Take Off Your Shoes

Due to some cultural peculiarities, in some restaurants you might be asked to take off your shoes before coming in. It’s completely ok and you should respect their tradition, so make sure you have a pair of socks just in case.

Stay Quiet

You have to say quiet in public places and avoid speaking loudly even in the subway. Moreover, you cannot eat, laugh in the subway and occupy places for handicapped, elderly people and pregnant women.


Squat potties are pretty common in Japan, so you have to get prepared mentally for it. These are toilets built right into the floor. It seems pretty daunting for us but it’s very common for Asia. Also, you will encounter a lot of high tech toilets that can heat your seat, flush for you, add some water noise so you can relax and do lots of other useful stuff that will make these few minutes of your life more pleasant.

No Eating and Smoking On the Streets

For us it’s a common thing to walk around, explore a city and grab a bite simultaneously to save time. In Japan it’s forbidden to smoke or eat while walking the streets as it will be considered as rude and impolite. Such behavior is not appropriate for their culture, so you will have to respect it.

Tattoos Are Taboo

It’s going to be a big surprise for you but while tattoos became pretty common in the world, in Japan it’s considered as a taboo. If you have tattoos on some visible parts of you body you won’t be allowed enter a Japanese onsen. You can choose appropriate clothes or use a tape to cover it. Otherwise, you will be rejected at the entrance.

To Wrap It Up

As you can see, there are a lot of cultural differences that you have to be aware of before traveling to Japan. We hope that you enjoyed the article and discovered a lot of interesting information about the country that you didn’t know before. Check this article one again before arrival and savor your trip.