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I'm traveling to Japan in June and just wanted to ask whether I should bring my iPhone/iPad to access wifi. I remember from several years ago that it was quite hard to use unless I went to a Starbucks. Is this still the case? Can I purchase a 2 week wifi plan for my iPhone?

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You want to buy a wifi plan or a Data Plan? –  Karlson Apr 1 at 14:22
    
If you mean wifi, of course, take it with you. If you mean data plan, it depends on which model of phone you have (GSM vs CDMA), whether it's unlocked, and maybe other factors. –  Flimzy Apr 1 at 17:52
    
It would be nice to also find some tricks to help find free Wi-Fi with free electricity. I'm going to face this problem soon when I leave my guesthouse. –  hippietrail Apr 2 at 9:24

2 Answers 2

up vote 10 down vote accepted

There are a few options.

These I think are the easiest options, but there are more - see Japan-Guide's breakdown (a quick Google of the service name + 'English' will usually find you an explanation even if the main site is in Japanese).

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The pocket wifi seems really good, and I hadn't come across it before. I might consider that! Thanks!! –  DaniG2k Apr 1 at 22:45
    
Awesome, glad to be of help. They're quite expensive but EXTREMELY fast. Enjoy your trip! –  codinghands Apr 2 at 2:36
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Good list of possibilities. For rental WiFi access my experience with Rentafone Japan has always been very good. All instructions in English and rental units with English menus. –  kkeller Apr 6 at 7:28

Yes, I'd bring the iPad, but you will definitely have to plan ahead since 100% no strings attached free wifi is rare as hen's teeth in Japan.

Two main points:

  1. Make sure your lodging offers free wifi for guests. Almost all business hotels and backpacker-y places do, but large chain hotels will charge an arm and a leg, and ryokan/minshuku usually won't have it.

  2. Consider signing up for Wi2 300, discussed in this question. TL;DR: ¥380/month gets you access to ~70,000 hot spots, and you can cancel after the first month. Note that, while that number sounds huge, it's actually not that much for a country of 100 million; it's worth studying the list in advance so you can figure out the chain stores (mostly Lawson & McDonalds) where you can get online.

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