Most Useful and Most Practical Travel Tips in Japan

About Community Buses in Tokyo

One day pass

The One day pass for each major metropolitan area was explained on my “Saving money in Japan”. If you use it well, you can really save money. However, for those who stay longer in one place, it does not seem to be of much benefit.

The minimum fare for the first ride on a train in Tokyo costs 180 yen (178 yen) for Toei Subway and 170 yen (168 yen) for Tokyo Metro (The bracket price is using a transportation system IC card) in Tokyo, so if you travel with your family, the fare will quickly reach 1,000 yen.

Metropolitan Bus (To-bus, Toei Transportation)

The minimum fare for a first ride on a metropolitan bus (To-bus) in Tokyo is even higher, costing 210 yen for adults and 110 yen for children.
The problem with using buses is traffic congestion on the roads.
The timetable says it is time for the bus to arrive, but there is no sign of the bus at all. You have no choice but to find another way to get to the information of bus, and it finally comes.
This is when an app on your smartphone comes in handy. The app shows you where the next bus is running, and even if there is a traffic jam, you can decide whether you should look for a different route other than the bus.
To install the Tokyo Metropolitan Bus app, please refer to here.
But there is no English version on both format yet.

Community buses

Some municipalities in Tokyo operate community buses, which are cheaper than To-Bus metropolitan buses.
In the case of Tokyo’s Minato Ward, the Chiibus (which means “small bus” in Japanese) is a ward-level service that circles around the area. The official name is Tokyo Minato City Community Bus. It circles around local stations, ward offices, places of interest, hospitals, etc.
The buses are smaller in size than regular buses and cost 100 yen per ride. However, children also need to pay 100 yen.
The buses are conveniently used by the elderly and families. It is because hospitals and other places are on the route.
Sometimes they run on the same route as the metropolitan buses, which is convenient, so it saves money to check to see if Chiibus is running.

However, community buses may be a little more difficult to find for foreigners, as there is not much information available in English.

Like the To-bus, the community buses accept electronic money such as Suica, Pasmo and other electric transportation money. (Some routes do not accept them.)

bus money saving
bus money saving

Community buses in Tokyo

Arakawa-ku Sakura Shioiri Sakura Machiya Sakura adult 160yen child 80yen
Adachi-ku Harukaze Adult 210 yen children 110 yen
Ota-ku Tokyo Tama-chan bus  Adults 160 yen children 80 yen
Katsushika-ku Tokyo Rainbow Katsushika 210yenAdult 210 yen children 110 yen
Kita-ku K-bus 100 yen per ride for both adults and children
Koto-ku Tokyo Shio-oze 100 yen per ride for both adults and children
Shinjuku-ku Shinjuku WE Bus 100 yen per ride for both adults and children
Shinagawa-ku Tokyo Shinabus 220 yen children 110 yen
Shibuya Ward Hachiko Bus 100 yen per ride for both adults and children
Sumida-ku Sumida Hyakkei Sumimaru-kun Mirin-chan 100 yen per ride for both adults and children
Suginami-ku Sugimaru100 yen per ride for both adults and children
Setagaya-ku Tokyo Setagaya Kururin 220yen children 110yen
Chiyoda-ku Tokyo Kazaguruma 100 yen per ride for both adults and children
Taito-ku Tokyo Megurin 100 yen per ride for both adults and children
Chuo Ward Edo Bus 100 yen per ride for both adults and children
Toshima-ku Tokyo IKE BUS Adults 200 yen Children 100 yen
Nakano-ku Tokyo K01 Adults 210 yen Children 110 yen
Nerima-ku Tokyo Midori Bus 220yen children 110yen
Bunkyo-ku Tokyo B-Guru100 yen per ride for both adults and children
Minato-ku Tokyo Chiibus100 yen per ride for both adults and children
Itabashi-ku Tokyo Rinrin-GO 220yen children 110yen

Community buses outside the 23 wards of Tokyo

The following is a partial list of community buses outside the 23 wards of Tokyo.
Hachioji City Hachibus There are various types and prices.
Nishitokyo City Hana Bus 100yen Children 100yen
Tama City Tama City Minibus Adults 200 yen Children 100 yen

Summary of community bus usage

If you are planning to go sightseeing in Tokyo, this is an effective means of transportation. It would be one of option to save money but not so much explanation in English.