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Tokyo's public transportation system is truly world class and makes the sprawling city easily accessible, and allowing people to commute into Tokyo from other prefectures.

Trains & Subway
Tokyo's railway and subway trains are efficient, punctual, and clean. They are so reliable that at some Japanese companies if you are late for work and blame public transportation for your tardiness, you will be expected to submit a "Delay Certificate" to convince your boss that you are telling the truth. All of which is made even more astounding because the Tokyo train network is by far the world's busiest, fulfilling 3.5 billion journeys every year. Of the 50 busiest stations in the world, all but 5 are in Japan with Tokyo's Shinjuku Station and its 4 million daily commuters taking the top spot. .

As convenient as it is, the railway network can be confusing to visitors. Due to its sheer size, the topological maps look like computer chip circuit boards and the stations themselves are a labyrinth of underground passageways, department stores, stairs, and elevators. Compounding this is the fact that different companies operate different lines. This means that to make a journey from A to C with a change at B, you need to exit and re-enter ticket gates at B if A–B and B–C happen to be on lines run by different companies. Fortunately, spurred on by the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, Tokyo is becoming a more foreign-friendly city, and English language information pamphlets and signs are common sight at all the stations.

Tokyo Toei buses cover most of the area lying within the loop of the Yamanote Line. The fare is a flat ¥210 (¥110 for children). Unless you are staying some distance from a station, you will probably not need to use the buses in Tokyo. The network and routes are not easy to follow and there are few maps and instructions in English.

Tokyo is one of the easiest cities to hail a taxi. There are approximately 50,000 operating in Tokyo and fares within the 23 special wards are fixed: ¥410 up to 1km and then ¥80 for every 240 meters thereafter. Prices rise by 20% during evening hours.

Taxi drivers usually speak little to no English so it is best to have the address written down. There is no need to worry about being cheated because Japanese taxi drivers are honest and they will properly calculate the fare. Remember that the left rear passenger door is automatic and the rear door does not open, in order to prevent passengers walking into traffic.

For more information about public transport services in Tokyo, click on the following links:

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