Where to Get a SIM Card at Narita Airport Terminal 1
It's the first thing you'll need when you get off your plane!
When you arrive in Japan, the first thing you’ll need is a compatible SIM card for your smartphone. This not only lets you take advantage of the wireless services in the country but also makes it easier for you to access the information that you need during your stay.
Getting your SIM card at Narita Airport is a quick and convenient way of doing this. If you’re not sure where you should go, this guide will help you navigate your way to stores that sell or rent SIM cards in the airport. Let's start with Terminal 1.
Narita Airport is composed of three terminals that are quite a long way from each other. In fact, it takes around 30 minutes to walk from one terminal to another.
Let’s take a look at each terminal building, starting with Terminal 1. For the sake of simplicity, we’ll assume that you've just entered through the North Wing. Assuming that you’ve just been cleared in Customs and are now on the first floor of the North Wing, your surroundings should look like this. The exit from Customs is on the right.
From above, the Narita Airport Terminal 1 looks like a letter “V”. Let’s start off by walking towards the Central Building, which is located in the area where the North and South Wing meet. Once you have passed through the immigration gate, look immediately to your right. This is what you should see. You should be able to make out the Central Building a little over 100 meters away. Walk towards the Central Building.
The slightly curved corner section of the terminal building connects the wing to the Central Building. This terminal facility is divided into the North Wing, the Central Building, and the South Wing, but they’re all actually still part of the same building. The so-called “connecting passageway” is really just a corridor that curves slightly. Make a left turn here.
We've arrived at the TelecomSquare store, which is marked by an eye-catching blue signboard. This store offers a comprehensive range of mobile-related services. If you want to purchase or rent a SIM card, talk to the sales assistant at the counter. They'll be able to suggest several products and plans for you to choose from.
These brochures are always on display at the counter and are available in Japanese, Chinese, Korean, and English versions. The personnel manning the counter usually only speak Japanese and English, but all the key information and frequently asked questions are covered by the brochures. Having these available in multiple languages and in a location where everyone can see them is very helpful.
Right next door to TelecomSquare is the JWiFi & Mobile counter. This store also provides mobile device rentals and sales. Just let the assistant behind the counter know what you need. Saying "I need a SIM card" should get you started. At most stores, including this one, advance reservation isn’t necessary for rentals or purchases.
JWiFi & Mobile has an English-language brochure available. Both JWiFi & Mobile and Telecom Square offer popular and easy-to-use prepaid plans.
Now, let’s retrace our steps a bit and go back to the spot linking the North Wing and the Central Building. Proceed to the slightly curved corner, where you'll find safety fences and other structures related to construction work. Behind the fence, right in front of JWiFi & Mobile, is an escalator. If you look behind that, you'll see two SIM vending machines—one large and one small.
As you can see, the vending machines have English-language and Chinese-language instructions. Follow the machines' easy-to-understand prompts and you’ll find it very simple to purchase a SIM card.
Let's return to the main corridor and head towards the South Wing again. This is the view of the South Wing, near the front of the J WiFi & Mobile counter. The section near the end of the corridor connects to the South Wing.
The South Wing is longer than the North Wing and there are usually a lot of people here. The photo shows the front of the South Wing immigration gate. You should be able to see the gate a little to the right. Look closely and you’ll see a currency exchange counter at the back, right beneath the Arrivals sign.
Straight ahead, you’ll see the vibrant three-colored sign on the left. This belongs to the Ministop convenience store, which carries SIM cards, as well as the usual convenience store products. Although the store is quite small, it surprisingly has a comprehensive line-up of products.
This particular Ministop branch offers the types of products that travelers need, especially overseas travelers. Its inventory is quite different from those of other Ministop branches.
Near the center of the store, there are shelves with cards displaying the SIM card products available, rather than the actual products themselves. If you want to purchase a SIM card, take the display card to the counter, and the sales assistant will get the real thing from the SIM card storage area. They can also answer questions such as what you need to do to start using your SIM card, how to install it into your phone, and how to start using the phone once the SIM card has been installed.
Now that we've explored Ministop, let's continue further into the South Wing. The Ministop is located near the escalator entrance. The end of the corridor, which you can see from here, marks the end of the South Wing. If you look closely, you'll notice a red signboard.
We've arrived at the JAL ABC counter, which has been a fixture at Narita Airport for many years. It's slightly out of the way and is located at the back of the South Wing. They handle everything—from baggage delivery and storage services to several other tasks which you’ll need assistance with at the airport.
There are also stores carrying SIM cards on the basement level and along the passageway leading to the train station. To visit these stores, go back the way you came and go down the basement using the escalator near the connecting section between the Central Building and the South Wing.
Upon getting off the escalator, go right and head towards the train station. Straight ahead, you’ll pass the Lawson convenience store.
If you want to purchase a SIM card, head directly to the counter and ask the sales assistant. You'll be able to purchase a SIM card at the latest price.
For more information, check out the airport’s official floor guide.
Provided by Japan Walker™ and Travel Photo Guide™ (27 November 2018)