Accessibility and Facilities for People with Disabilities in Tokyo

Overview of where to go and what to do if you are mobility, sight or hearing impaired, a wheelchair or cane user, and living in or visiting Tokyo...

Getting Around Tokyo

Tokyo is a thriving city with a huge population and it can be quite a challenge to get around. The government has taken many steps to ease the burden on people with disabilities, and requires that the following design standards are taken into consideration when undertaking renovations and for new public buildings and facilities:

  • Levelling of pavements
  • Laying embossed tiles on pavements for people with visual disabilities
  • Installing automatic doors, lifts and accessible toilets
  • Providing traffic sound signals for persons with visual disabilities

Also, most pavements have slopes available for wheelchair access. The accessible toilets are usually spacious and have amenities such as automatic doors, automatic lighting and hand rails. Reception staff in most large buildings are able to assist people with disabilities if required.

Some of the possible difficulties in getting around include:

  • Some of the train stations and buildings were originally designed without elevators. Most stations have at least one wheelchair accessible route
  • Navigating the crowds of people (especially during rush hour)

Buses

Some public buses have low step and wheelchair accessibility; however, they are not standardised.

Trains

Staff at the train stations can assist and guide people with disabilities to the train. They also normally provide a ramp to get on and off the train as there is a gap. It is not required to telephone in advance; however, it might save some time at the station.

  • JR Train Phone – English-speaking service to arrange help at the station in advance
    Tel: 03 3423 0111 (Open weekdays 10:00-18:00)
  • Tokyu Corporation Train Phone – English-speaking service to arrange help at the station in advance
    Tel: 03 3477 0109 (Open weekdays 09:30-17:30)

Taxis

Regular taxis are easy to find; however, a wheelchair accessible taxi should be reserved in advance. The following companies can provide wheelchair accessible taxis:

Travel information

The following resources are helpful for planning journeys:

  • Airport Limousine bus accessibility information: Click here
  • Haneda Airport barrier free information: Click here
  • JR East train company accessibility information: Click here
  • JR East train company station diagrams and maps: Click here
  • Keisei company train station diagrams and maps: Click here
  • Narita Airport Information: Click here
  • Train station diagrams and maps: Click here

Parking for the Disabled

Disabled parking spaces are required by law and can be found in almost all car parks.

Sightseeing and Tourist Areas

Many of the tourist attractions in Tokyo have designated facilities for the disabled. Further details about some of these can be found on the links below: