Guide to the Tokyo Subway 1-3 Day Pass

A how-to guide for the Tokyo subway pass that saves you money and time. The pass is valid in 24, 48, and 72-hour intervals for the Tokyo Metro and Toei Subway lines, which reach nearly 200 stations.

Tokyo subway pass

Tokyo Subway day tickets come with 24-48-72 hour options — Image courtesy of Tokyo Metro

Tokyo Metro Pass Overview

tokyo-subway-pass-guide-infographic

Quick overview for the Tokyo Subway Pass

Tokyo Metro Pass Overview

What’s so great about it?

  • Great value for unlimited rides! An average ride in Tokyo is about ¥200 and can cost up to ¥400 for a single trip if you switch from the Tokyo Metro to the Toei Subway lines.
  • Can go into any subway station. The central Tokyo subway has 2 major companies: the Tokyo Metro and the Toei Subway. To transfer between the companies is confusing and costly (my commute costed me ¥450 one-way even though I’m in only travelling in my own district). Reading the map is already confusing enough, don’t waste your time figuring out which line you can use!
  • Saves you lots of time. Many popular spots such as Shibuya, Shinjuku, Asakusa, Tsukiji Fish Market, and Roppongi are not walkable from each other.
  • It’s so great, they don’t let locals (even foreign locals like me) buy it. It costs locals ¥1000 to get a Tokyo Metro and Toei Subway pass for just 24-hours. In contrast, travellers get the same pass for ¥800.
tokyo subway map

Tokyo Subway Map including Tokyo Metro and Toei Subway Lines

Available to:

  • International travellers in Japan (bring your passport, which will be checked)
  • Domestic visitors residing outside of Tokyo, Kanagawa, Saitama, Chiba, Ibaraki, Tochigi, Gunma and Yamanashi.

Valid Routes: Unlimited ride pass on all Tokyo Metro & Toei Subway Lines

Ticket Design Price Valid for unlimited rides within

Adult: ¥800
Child: ¥400
24 hours from the time of activation (from 8pm to 8pm the next day)

Use if you take 4+ rides over within 24 hours

Adult: ¥1,200
Child: ¥600
48 hours from the time of activation

Use if you take 6+ rides over 2 days

Adult: ¥1,500
Child: ¥750
72 hours from the time of activation

Use if you take 8+ rides over 3 days

Places to buy Tokyo Subway Day Passes

**Note: The Tokyo Subway Pass is available only from certain vendors. In Tokyo, passes can be purchased from Narita Airport, Haneda Airport, at designated hotels, or the list of vendors below. Tickets can be purchased prior to travel with designated travel agencies. Tokyo Metro has a list of companies that sell this pass outside of Japan.

Below is a list of places where you can buy the Tokyo Day Pass after arriving. *Passports will be checked.*

Airports

Haneda Airport (International Terminal Visitor Information Center)*1, Narita Airport*. Only sold to overseas visitors on tourist visas. (Passports will be checked)

Images are courtesy of Tokyo Metro.

1. BIC CAMERA and Sofmap (Electronics department store)

bic camera tokyo

BIC Camera is in major shopping areas like Ginza, Shinjuku, and Shibuya — Image via Flickr cc Jun560his

BIC CAMERA Yurakucho Store, BICQLO BIC CAMERA Shinjuku East Store, BIC CAMERA Akasaka-mitsuke Station Store, BIC CAMERA Ikebukuro Main Store, BIC CAMERA Shibuya East Store, BIC CAMERA Shibuya Hachiko Store, BIC CAMERA Shinjuku East Store, BIC CAMERA Shinjuku West Store, Bic Drug SHIDAX Shinjuku Central road shop, The Ikebukuro east exit. Camera building and Sofmap Akihabara Main Store

  • *Passports will be checked.

2. Laox (Electronics department store)

laox tokyo

Laox electronics departmnet store is in areas like Akihabara, Shinjuku, and Ginza. — Image via Flickr cc tomcensani

Laox Akihabara Main Store, Laox AsoBitCity Store, Laox Shinjuku Main Store, Laox WATCH, Laox Ginza Main Store and Laox EXITMELSA Store

  • *Passports will be checked.

3. HIS Tourist Information Center

Only select HIS Tourist information centres sell this ticket so make sure you are going to one of the branches below! (Personally, I would suggest oyu go to a BIC Camera instead since most of their branches sell the pass.)

Shinjuku Head Office, Shinjuku 3-chome, Ginza Head Office, Ginza Core and Harajuku

  • *Passports will be checked.
tokyo-subway-pass-8325

Insert a Tokyo Subway Pass into the ticket gate

How to use the pass:

  1. If you pre-ordered, exchange your voucher for the ticket at designated shops.
  2. If purchasing in Tokyo, purchase from the stores above (show your passport).
  3. Once you get the ticket, insert it into the gate at the subway.
  4. Check the time stamp at the back of the ticket. It should be 24 / 48 / 72 hours from the time you inserted it.
  5. Enjoy your rides!
  6. If you take the subway that turns into a train (i.e. to Kichijoji or Mitaka for the Studio Ghibli Museum), don’t worry. Just show the pass to the station attendant and pay the additional fare for the non-covered portion.
  7. You can insert your ticket up until the expiry time and exit another station after the expiry time.

traveller icon

Other Tokyo Subway Pass FAQs:

  1. How is this different from the SUICA and PASMO cards I hear about?
    SUICA and PASMO are cash cards. You charge them with money, swipe them at a ticket gate and your fare is automatically deducted. This system is convenient for commuters who don’t have to purchase tickets for every trip, but has no discounts. Going around Tokyo in a day could easily cost you more than ¥1500 if you hop on and off frequently. The Tokyo Subway Pass is also an easy insert into the ticket gate to get in and out.
  2. Can I take all the trains in Tokyo with this?
    The short answer is no, but you can take most of them to about 200 stations throughout Tokyo. The Tokyo Metro and Toei Subway make up most of Tokyo’s transit system, so the lines will reach all the popular travel spots. (Note: Tokyo Disney Sea is officially located in Chiba and the Studio Ghibli Museum is officially located in Musashino City. Both are very accessible from Tokyo and your subway pass will cover you until the end of the Tokyo Metro / Toei Subway lines).
  3. Why do you say Tokyo Metro and Toei Subway? Are they different?
    Tokyo Metro and Toei Subway are the two largest subway companies in Tokyo. Combined, they have close to 200 stations throughout the city and have access to virtually all of Tokyo’s main attractions.
  4. Why don’t you say 1-day instead of 24-hours for the pass?
    Your pass is valid for 24-hours from the time of activation. If you activate at 12:00 noon, you can use the pass until 12:00 noon the next day.
  5. How is this different from the Tokyo Metro 24-hour pass?
    The Tokyo Metro Day Pass (¥600) is not valid on Toei Subway Lines.  The Tokyo Metro 24-hour pass can be bought at automated ticketing machines at Tokyo Metro Stations and they are valid for only Tokyo Metro lines. This means, for example, that you cannot take the Toei Subway Mita, Shinjuku, Oedo, Asakusa lines. The pass is available to locals and also of great value if you plan to take 3 or more rides within a 24-hour period.
  6. How is this different from the Common One-day Ticket for Tokyo Metro & Toei Subway?
    It’s the same, except that the Common One-day Ticket for Tokyo Metro & Toei Subway costs ¥1000 for one day only. 

 

If this post helped you, please share with your friends as well! Thanks!

Looking for inspiration on what to eat in Tokyo? Check out my local 20 daily food tips (with a restaurant map).

18 responses to “Guide to the Tokyo Subway 1-3 Day Pass

  1. Not sure if I’ll get a response, but I’m an American with resident status living in Iwate. I can still get this pass at a BIC camera, right? I plan to get to Tokyo on the night bus from my town. Thanks!

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    • Hi Diana, if you have a residence card you cannot. Only travellers showing passports with a valid travel visa can purchase. If you are meeting a friend who’s travelling then they could get an extra one for you.

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      • Aweeee boo! Yes, I do have a residence card. However, I thought it said on the website that those living outside the Tokyo metro could still get one. I’m meeting a friend, but she’s in the military. Not sure if she can get me one. Thank you for the reply!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ah, sorry about that you asked a detail that I as a former Tokyo resident forgot. That piece of information should be available on the Tokyo metro site for you to confirm. Also the pass is valid for about half a year, so you don’t have to stress if you don’t use it all. Your residence card will prove you’re out of province anyway. Give it a go and please let me know!!

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      • Ok, I will! I already made the mistake of paying for every train ride last time I was in Tokyo, so this time I want to be savvy and get it hahahaha! I will give it a go and for sure let you know if it worked ^-^

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi, i am going to stay at komae station area which is the odakyu line, i’m wondering if i can use this pass taking the odakyu line? to travel to shinjuku and then other places

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