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Medical Service Dog that help people with disability or mobility issues

Accessible
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The red dot signifies a Japanese-exclusive link that provides valuable information. 

Priority Seat cover for elderly, disabled and pregnant women and passenger with young children
Help Mark is to tell people you have disability
Sushi and many other Japanese meals can be vegan or vegetalian, and they are super delicious.
family seal called Kamon
Accessibility Options in Travel to Japan

Accessible Travel

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Accessibility Options in Travel to Japan 

Japan offers many accessibility-minded accommodations for its citizens and tourists. Two major non-profit organizations can assist you with planning your stay and transportation: Japan Accessible Travel Tourism Center and Accessible Travel Japan. These resources offer extensive lists of accessible hotels, sightseeing destinations, trains, and terminal information.  They specialize in providing the best information possible to make your travel safe and pleasant. I encourage you to contact them directly to discuss your travel needs. 

Recommended Resources

The following offer accessible travel info outside of the Tokyo area: 

Mobility Information

Go Tokyo provides solutions for the transportation needs of wheelchair users, the elderly, pregnant women, and those with baby strollers traveling in Tokyo. 

 

The Haneda Airport has offered self-driving wheelchairs since 2020. You can read more about it here at Passenger Self Service.

Recommended Resources

Mobility Information
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Service Dog Information

The Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare has a website page that outlines their policies on service dogs that travel from other countries. You can view that page here at: https://www.mhlw.go.jp/english/policy/care-welfare/welfare-disabilities/assistance_dogs/index.html

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*IMPORTANT*: Japan accommodates many kinds of service dogs as long as they follow a set of rules and guidelines. These important details, such as what types of service dogs (guide dog, mobility service dog, hearing dog) are accepted, import notification requirements, how to bring your service dog to Japan, and more can be viewed here.

Service Dog Information

Quarantine System for Dogs and Cats 

All Dogs and cats imported into Japan must undergo import quarantine inspection.

 

You can view an overview of this system here

Visually Impaired 

If you are visually impaired and have a guide dog, you can read more about the Japan Guide Dog Association here. If you are a graduate of a member organization of the International Guide Dog Federation, The Japan Guide Dog Association is ready to provide you with a Temporary Certificate of Overseas Guide Dog Users valid during your trip to Japan. Click here to see what the JGDA says about visiting Japan with your guide dog.

Banknote information for the Visually Impaired

 

In this National Printing Bureau page, you can learn how to distinguish between different banknotes by simply touching them. Each kind of banknote has a unique texture and symbol on the corner.

Visually Impaired 

Medical Information

If you need a doctor or need to bring your medication to Japan from our home country, please visit my "Useful Tip & App" page and look under "Medical Information."

Medical Information

Invisible Disabilities

If you have invisible impediments, such as artificial joints, digestive disorders, etc., Check A Toilet is an excellent restroom database that could come in handy. You can find restroom locations and amenities, such as baby-changing stations, hand-rail types/areas, washing equipment for ostomates, emergency buttons, wheelchair-accessible restrooms, etc. In addition to their website, Check A Toilet has an app to download on your phone for your convenience.

 

Another great tool for those with invisible disabilities is called Help Mark. The Tokyo Metropolitan Government created this red badge with a white cross and heart in 2012 to make travel more accessible. For people with hidden impediments, or "invisible disabilities," such as prosthetic limbs, artificial joints, internal ailments, and rare diseases, the Help Mark can help you get seated on a crowded train or bus by simply attaching a badge to your belongings. 

 

You can pick up your Help Mark at most city halls throughout Japan; however, the most accessible places are the Toei Subway stations in Tokyo. Most of the Toei Subway stations can give you one except Oshiage, Meguro, Shiroganedai, Shiroganedai Takanawa, or Shinjuku station at Shinjuku Line. Here is the list of places you can obtain in Japanese if you're not close to any Toei Subway lines.

*Japanese Language Only. We suggest the readers should show it to the hotel clerk for help.

Invisible Disabilities

Helpful Devices and Services for Communication

If you need language/translation assistance to communicate well in Japan and discuss your needs throughout your travels, the following translation apps are helpful. You can also purchase or rent a small translation device. I recommend PockeTalk. It can be used practically in 128 countries because it can translate 74 languages into your native tongue without WiFi.  This small device is widely used in Japan, such as in emergency rooms, hospitals, schools, and hotels.


If you'd like to explore additional options for translation devices, you can check out this website here.

Pocketalk, pocket WiFi device (portable router), and other valuable devices are available for rental. You have many choices of such rental companies at Narita and Haneda Airports. There are a few examples.

 

 

Apps: 

Recommended Resources for Translation/communication Apps and Rental devices

Helpful Devices and Service for Communication

Professional Translation/Language Assistance for your Travel

If you require a translation service to speak to your travel agency or hotel in Japan, you can use an over-the-phone translation service provided by any of the following companies. As a bonus, some of them can also translate e-mails!


 

If you would like to leave your travel arrangements to professionals, the following travel agencies are reputable for their knowledge and experience accommodating their customers’ needs.

 

Additional Travel Care Service Options:

Recommended Resources

Professional Help with Your Travel

Special Needs in Food

Halal

Halal is getting more recognition nowadays in Japan.

You can check out these websites to search for

Halal restaurants, and Mosque/Masjid to find out more. 

I have also listed some vegetarian/vegan websites below.

Halal.jpg

Useful Websites 

Recommended Resources:

Kosher

You can learn about Kosher food in Japan on Chabad Tokyo Japan, and Kosher JapanTwo restaurants that consider themselves to be Kosher restaurants are Chana's Place Tokyo and Kosher Delica. You can learn more about Kosher food in Japan on Chabad Japan’s website here. 

Vegetarian/Vegan

If you're a Pescatarian, you will have plenty of dining options for your travels in Japan. It's especially easy to find food in Japan as a pescetarian because we often use fish broth in our food. For all the vegetarians and vegans out there, don't worry -- there are plenty of apps and websites available to discover all of the incredible options.

Recommended Resources

Special Needs in Food

Food Allergy & Intolerance

Food Allergy

If you have specific food allergies, check out these websites.

They have helpful information and practical tips.

The best way to avoid trouble is to learn to read food labels

and carry a card explaining your food allergies in Japanese

wherever you go.

You can find bilingual cards on the websites listed below.

Not every restaurant can accommodate your requests,

but you can find places willing to be flexible. 

Food Allergy 2.jpg

Recommended Resources

Gluten-free & Celiac

In Japan, gluten intolerance and celiac disease awareness isn't very high. Even so, you can find some restaurants that serve gluten-free menus, especially in big cities. If you like sushi, you can bring your non-soy-based sauce called Tamari. If you love bread, you can go to the bakeries that use rice powder instead of wheat. As you would when planning to dine anywhere, take proper precautions and prepare ahead of time to ensure you can enjoy all that Japan’s cuisine has to offer.

Recommended Resources

Food Allergy & Intolerance

Activities & Interests

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Torii is a traditional gate or arch for  shrines and temples in Japan
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