Konnichiwa! Say Hello to Tokyo with These 11 Travel Apps

Shibuya Crossing, the Imperial Palace, metro station sushi, vending machine ramen.

Tokyo is one of the most fascinating cities I’ve ever visited—you could spend months there and never cross everything off your Tokyo bucket list.

To make the most of your time, download Tokyo travel apps.

These apps will help you find your way around the mega metropolis of Tokyo, as well as find the best activities.


Tokyo Travel Apps for Communication

Google Translate

iOSAndroid | Website

tokyo travel apps

Google Translate offers the usual language dictionary features, but it also has optical character recognition, better known as OCR.

All you have to do is point your phone’s camera over Japanese words (yes, even over kanji), and the translation appears immediately.

Pros: Google Translate can translate languages in multiple ways, including text, voice, handwriting or character recognition.

Cons: The OCR function definitely isn’t perfect. The translations are often literal, so you get some interesting translations.


iOSAndroid | Website

Tokyo is a huge city. In order to experience everything it has to offer, it’s crucial to become conversational in Japanese, which is where FluentU comes in.

It combines authentic Japanese media clips—like music videos, movie trailers, news and inspiring talks—with learning tools to create immersive language lessons.

Pros: Hearing native accents in authentic videos will help you learn to understand and communicate with Japanese locals.

Cons: The program works best for those who have already started on their Japanese language journey.


Android | Website

tokyo travel apps

Japanese not only includes a massive dictionary with over 175,000 words, it also acts as a study tool.

It breaks down kanji characters to help you learn them, and it offers thousands of examples of how to use the words. You can even create personalized study lists.

Pros: Japanese offers many ways to learn how to read and write Japanese. The app even includes the lists of vocabulary needed to pass the JLPT (a standardized test for non-native speakers).

Cons: The current Android version is still being updated and doesn’t have all the features of the iOS version yet.


iOSAndroid | Website

tokyo travel apps

LINE is Japan’s answer to WhatsApp and is a must-have when you want to communicate with people in Tokyo.

Use LINE for group chats and video calls. It basically operates as your phone if you don’t have a phone plan in Tokyo and relies solely on Wi-Fi.

Pros: LINE offers free instant messaging, free audio/video calls to other LINE users and lots of fun extras, like stickers and merchandise.

Cons: None!

Akebi Japanese Dictionary


tokyo travel apps

This is another Japanese-English dictionary that’s jam-packed with words and study tools.

If you like Imiwa? but don’t have an iPhone, this is the app to get. And you can download the app to use offline.

Pros: Akebi includes a built-in Japanese keyboard as well as handwriting recognition.

Cons: There’s only an Android version of the app available.

Tokyo Travel Apps for Navigation

Google Maps

iOS | Android | Website

tokyo travel apps

Good old Google Maps is reliable just about anywhere.

Google Maps shows you how to get around Tokyo via car, public transit and foot. You can download portions of the map so you don’t need to connect to internet to use the app.

Pros: The app is generally reliable, especially for all the walking you’ll do around Tokyo!

Cons: New stores and places are constantly popping up. While Google Maps does a great job at trying to keep up, it might not have the most up-to-date information all the time.


Android | Website

tokyo travel apps

This app provides maps of pretty much any place in the world offline, completely free. You can get directions and find nearby hotels, attractions and restaurants.

Pros: The map of Tokyo is fully accessible offline so you don’t have to use data or find a Wi-Fi connection. The walking directions will even show you the terrain of your walk.

Cons: If you only use the offline map, you’ll need to remember to update it when you’re connected to the internet so you don’t get lost.

Tokyo Travel Apps for Sightseeing and Culture


iOSAndroid | Website

tokyo travel apps

Want to find out what music events are going on in Japan? iFlyer is the app used for promoting and sharing music-related events in Tokyo and beyond.

Pros: Users can order tickets and view them inside the app.

Cons: The search function is a bit finicky.

Tokyo Art Beat

iOSAndroid | Website

tokyo travel apps

Tokyo Art Beat is your source for finding the hippest art scenes in the city. It lists events and links you the website for each one.

Pros: It’s an easy-to-use app that lets you search by location or by art category.

Cons: You’ll have to pay to get all the benefits of the app.


iOSAndroid | Website

tokyo travel apps

NHK WORLD TV provides users with up-to-date programs in English.

The app takes shows from 54 broadcast stations from around Japan as well as from 30 of the world’s majors cities. There are news and cultural shows as well as a program called #Tokyo, which gives visitors insight into what to see when they’re in Tokyo.

Pros: There are so many shows to watch to learn more about Tokyo and the country of Japan.

Cons: You might find yourself so caught up in watching the shows that you lose track of time!

Tokyo Travel Apps for Daily Life

Yurekuru Call

iOSAndroid | Website

tokyo travel apps

This app alerts you to earthquake warnings around the country. You can set the seismic activity intensity scale so you’re only notified about stronger earthquakes.

Pros: It’s very easy to use.

Cons: The app is in English for the most part, but it’s not flawless English. The tutorial is completely in Japanese.


There’s so much to do and see in Tokyo that you’re bound to need a little help along the way.

Download these apps and you’ll be able to take on Tokyo like a pro!

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