May 18, 2024


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Why Google Map is Important while traveling in Japan

3 min read

Why Google Map is Important while traveling in Japan

The first time we travelled to Japan was in 2012. It was five years ago and we still remember how we printed stack of information and places to visit. We used our friend’s phone international roaming instead of pocket wifi and Google Map back had lesser functions. We sort of survived our trip back then based on maps and guide books but on our recent trip to the land of rising sun, we found a better solution. It is the 2017 version of Google Map.

google map kansai

You can still take the map from the information counter but if you need to travel from one place to another, Google Map will be your saviour.

google map kansai airport to awaza
Open your google map app and hit the directions of where you plan to go. Click the transport section and you will get the list of options with the timing and fares.

Just click your current location and ask for directions to your destination. You can choose driving, public transport or walking. When you choose public transport, you get options of either you want to take trains all the way or busses or both. The interesting part is it can tell you the different type of trains you can take and also how much you need to pay. Thus, it is so detail they can actually tell you the exact train to hop on for our destination.

How accurate is Google Map?

In our own experience, we thought of ‘outsmarting’ the app by stopping a station later (which is nearer to the connection station). However, the train didn’t stop at the station and divert to another line. Lesson learnt and we walk ten more minutes.

google map airport detail
We chose the option with the best timing and least train exchange and it actually shows you the exact timing when is the train is leaving and estimate your walking time from one station to another.

Google Map can give you the option to either choose which type of trains to choose, how far you want to walk and the cheapest option to travel. You can select that options in Google Map.

google map schedule explorer
The schedule explorer will show you the exact train and the timing they depart. We are impressed how Google Map have improved over the years and how it really saved us the hassles of finding the right trains and reading a physical map.

You can also check the Schedule Explorer for the more accurate train or bus timing and schedule.

To make your trip safer, always ask the train master before you enter the train station. They will let you know which platform to take the train. Since most train boards only show ‘kanji’ (Chinese characters) or hiragana (Japanese characters), you can always ask around for directions.

The Google Map’s function is to bring you from point A to point B with their direct information with the Japanese public mass system. With Google Map, we can pinpoint how much time we need to travel around and how much we are spending on each trip.

For the type of passes to purchase for the train rides, we will write another story for that. In short, it depends where you plan to go and where you stay and how long you plan to travel in the area and how convenient you want to be. There is no such thing as the best Japanese train pass but the best pass that suits your travel needs.

For those who is not renting pocket wifi, you can still use the Google Map. Download the Google Map of the location first to your phone or SD card with your sign in ID. The GPS in Google Map will work offline once you are in the location map you downloaded. We still recommend you to get a pocket wifi for your convenience.

We hope this will help you in planning your trip to Japan. We will write more travel tips like this more so remember to follow us on our Facebook at and Instagram at


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