WiFi Accessibility On Shinkansen (Bullet Trains)

JAPAN RAIL PASS is a special JR railway ticket sold at a very reasonable price exclusively available for overseas travelers to Japan. With this ticket, you can go throughout Japan by rail, including Shinkansen (bullet trains).

Even by rail, considering transportation from your home to an airport and from the airport to a destination, you can reach the destination even faster than by air plain in some routes such as from Tokyo to Osaka and from Tokyo to Kanazawa.

However, either way, you have to spend 2 to 3 hours on transportation.
I sometimes receive an inquiry about WiFi accessibility on trains to use the internet in such hours.
So, to make it easy to understand the WiFi situation, I will write about free WiFi accessibility on shinkansens.

Shinkansen Free WiFi Accessibility


Tokaido Shinkansen(Tokyo to Osaka)

No free WiFi spots.

Sanyo Shinkansen(Osaka to Hakata)

No free WiFi spots.

Tohoku Shinkansen(Tokyo to Aomori)

No free WiFi spots.

Jyoetsu Shinkansen(Tokyo to Niigata)

No free WiFi spots.

Hokuriku Shinkansen(Tokyo to Kanazawa)

No free WiFi spots.

Hokkaido Shinkansen(Aomori to Hokkaido)

No free WiFi spots.

Yamagata Shinkansen(Fukushima to Yamagata)

No free WiFi spots.

Akita Shinkansen(Mitagi to Akita)

No free WiFi spots.
As of September 2017, Shinkansen actually not provided any free WiFi, except for a part of the Tokaido shinkansen route. This route is a fee-based service, but even on this train, it is not high-speed due to it is shared by lots of people.

Shinkansen WiFi Accessibility

In the first place, most Shinkansen are not on good situation to get radio frequencies because they go through mountain areas.

Pocket Wifi or SIM Card is Available on Shinkansen?

When the train stops at stations, you of course can use the internet.
However, when on the move, you can not sufficiently use the internet as Shinkansen go through lots of areas that are hard to get radio frequencies such as mountains and tunnels.
As of September 2017, you are better off to use a pocket WiFi router or a SIM card only when the Shinkansen stops at stations.

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