Electric Supply and Plugs
100 volts AC, 60Hz in the west (Osaka); 100 volts AC, 50Hz in eastern Japan and Tokyo. Plugs are flat two-pin plugs.
Japan Time Zone is GMT + 9hrs
The official language of Japan is Japanese! In tourist areas in the larger cities such as Tokyo and Kyoto some English is spoken, but outside of these areas locals only speak Japanese.
Japan's climate is classified as temperate and has four seasons. However a variety of influences including the Siberian air stream and various Pacific Ocean currents give the country a fairly complex climatic pattern. Japan also lies within the Monsoon Zone and has a short rainy season which lasts from early June into mid July. For the rest of the summer, extending to the end of August there is less precipitation but humidity and temperatures are high. August to the end of September is the main typhoon season. Spring and Autumn are the best times to visit Japan (unless you wish to climb Mount Fuji). At these times of the year temperatures are warm but not hot (between 20 and 25ºC) and skies are usually clear. April and May brings the famous cherry blossoms while October turns the landscape gold brown and red which can be equally impressive.
Currency is the Japanese Yen (JPY). For up to date exchange rates please visit: www.xe.com
Visas are not required for visits for tourist purposes up to 6 months by nationals of the UK, Ireland, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and Mexico, and for visits up to 90 days by nationals of most other European countries and the USA. National of countries not mentioned above should check the visa situation with the Japanese Embassy in their own country.
You should attend your own doctor and dentist for a check-up. Your doctor will have access to the most up to date information on the required vaccinations for the country you are visiting. In general we recommend vaccinations against the following: Polio, Tetanus, Typhoid, & Hepatitis ‘A'. A very good online resource is the NHS travel website at www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk