Public bus stops are “everywhere” but they are the least expat-friendly as information in English is scarce. That being said, many bus drivers will go above and beyond in helping you find your way, and to point out your destination once you’ve arrived. Each bus route operates on a different schedule, but most buses begin operation around 6 or 7 a.m. and end around 10 p.m. In most cases passengers will be able to get a seat, but buses can get busy, particularly during the early morning hours, early evening, and on weekends.

In Tokyo, unlike some other parts in Japan, those boarding the bus do so from the front door. While boarding the public bus, adult passengers pay a flat rate of 200 yen for any stop along the bus route. The fare is paid into a machine immediately next to the bus driver, who can also make change if necessary. As you approach your destination, press one of the many “stop” buttons that line the walls and handrails of the bus to alert the driver that you’d like to get off the bus at the approaching destination. Passengers getting off the bus should do so through the door at the middle of the bus.

More information on riding Tokyo buses, including maps in English (schedules are not available online but are posted at each bus stop, and there are no online-planning tools offered at present), can be found here: (