Traveling in Japan With Disabilities   不自由な方

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Accessible Japan

Japan is one of the countries in the world that have taken this issue to heart the most. With an ageing Japanese population, accessibility has increasingly become a focus.

In Tokyo and other major Japanese cities, many disabled western tourists are struck by the variety of mediums available to them.

Visual Impairment

The relief city maps are common, and it is even possible to find indications in Braille - eg on a wall to signal the proximity of a staircase. On the ground, tactile strips indicate obstacles or can indicate the way.


In Japan, most buildings have ramps to facilitate access to people in wheelchairs, as well as bikes. In the bus, a small bridge unfolds automatically, or is implemented in a few seconds by the staff. Similarly, trains are easily accessible to wheelchair users, thanks to the width of their driveways.

You will also find that most call buttons (doorbells, alarms, elevator etc.) are placed at the height of people in wheelchairs.

Good to know

In Japanese, a person with reduced mobility is known as 身体障害者(pronounced shintai shogai sha) and a wheelchair車いす(kuruma isu)). If you use a wheelchair, please contact your hotel in advance to ensure that it is designed to accommodate you. This will also allow the staff to prepare any possible needs.

For more information, please visit Japan Accessible

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