Vegetarian's Japan Guide

Need a Japan eSIM Card? Consider Mobal’s Japan eSIM!

Internet connection is essential when we travel abroad, especially in Japan. There are so many good restaurants and fun attractions in the beautiful country that without the internet, it can be hard to figure out which one to visit. The good news is connecting your device to the internet is getting cheaper! If your phone is compatible with an eSIM card, it will only cost you less than 2,500 yen for 3GB of data!

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The Benefits of Using Mobal’s Japan eSIM Card

  • Mobal’s eSIM card uses Japan’s best network provider, NTT DoCoMo. This means the fastest internet speed and the best coverage.
  •  Its data packages are cheaper than other major Japanese eSIM providers (excluding international eSIM providers such as Ubigi and Airalo).
  • Activation is easy. All you need to do is click on the email link and follow the prompts.
  • By purchasing from Mobal, you also donate to a charity. Mobal donates a part of its profit to Seibo, a registered Japanese non-profit organization aiming to help feed every hungry child and provide them with education.

Ordering Your Mobal Japan eSIM Card

Ordering a data-only eSIM from Mobal is easy. Just choose the number of days you need the eSIM card and the data amount.

  • For the short-term eSIMs, you can choose from 8-Day, 16-Day, and 31-Day plans.
  •  The 8-Day and 16-Day plans have 4 different data options: 1GB, 3GB, 10GB, and 50GB.
  • If you plan to stay in Japan for a month, you can purchase either the 10GB or 50GB plan.

Before purchasing, remember to read through the details of your desired data plan by clicking the green Find Out More button.

How Much Data Is Enough While Traveling in Japan

People commonly ask how much data they should purchase beforehand for their upcoming Japan trip. While the answer largely depends on your internet usage pattern, you can refer to the below as a rough guide for a 14-day trip.

  • If you only plan to use the internet for navigation, checking emails, and finding nice restaurants and attractions, 3GB is usually enough.
  • If you plan to check social media and upload photos a few times a day, you will need between 5GB and 10GB of data.
  • If you also want to stream while traveling in Japan, you probably need at least 30GB of data.

What Happened After Purchasing Mobal’s Data eSIM Card

Once you have successfully made an order, an email from Mobal should be in your inbox shortly. The email contains a link to activate your eSIM, so please don’t lose it before your eSIM is activated in Japan.

Activating Your Mobal eSIM

Once you have landed and are connected to a free WiFi, click the eSIM activation link in your email. An activation code will be issued to you. Follow Mobal’s Step-by-Step User Guide to set up the eSIM in your device.

You can also use the same link to track your data usage. The page also tells you when the eSIM will expire.

Our Experience of Using Mobal’s eSIM Card

In November 2023, we spent 14 days exploring the Kansai region‘s rural areas. In conclusion, the overall experience is satisfactory. While there are instances that the phone could hardly be connected to the internet while trekking through the mountainous areas, those are the times when an internet connection wasn’t required.

See below for more details about our experience using Mobal’s eSIM card.

Mobal’s eSIM’s Connectivity on Trains

Mobal’s eSIM card usually connected us to the internet while on a train. Depending on where the train was and how fast it traveled, there were times when the speed was extremely slow, or the phone could hardly be connected to the internet.

If you need a more stable internet connection, getting a physical SIM card would be better.

Mobal’s eSIM’s Connectivity in Kyoto and Osaka’s Central Areas

We had no issues accessing the internet in Kyoto’s Osaka’s central areas using Mobal’s eSIM. The average download speed was between 15 and 25Mbps, which allowed us to stream videos smoothly. The average upload speed was around 5Mbps.

Mobal’s eSIM’s Connectivity Around Kinosaki Onsen, Ine Bay, Amanohashidate, Ōhara, Ōtsu, and Mt. Hiei

Our main focus of the trip was the Kyoto, Hyōgo, and Shiga Prefecture‘s regional areas, including Kinosaki Onsen, Ine Bay, Amanohashidate, Ōhara, Ōtsu, and Mt. Hiei. The internet connection was fast in the town centres, with a download speed tested up to 45Mbps, which is really fast.

That said, when we were deep in the mountains, such as the Yokawa area of Mt. Hiei, some parts of the precinct of Nariaiji Temple in Amanohashidate, parts of Ōhara, and the temples in Ōtsu’s deep mountains, our phones could hardly be connected to the internet.

Mobal’s Voice+Data eSIM

If you need a Japanese phone number, it is possible to get an eSIM from Mobal, too. The ordering process is similar to a physical Voice + Text + Data SIM card. You will need to submit your passport details either beforehand or upon arrival. If you choose to provide your passport details at the airport, an activation link won’t be sent to you. Instead, you will be given an activation QR code at the pick-up counter after the staff photocopies your passport.

You can refer to our Mobal Voice + Text + Data SIM Card article for more information about ordering a SIM card with a phone number.

Our Experience Using Mobal’s Voice + Data eSIM

We used Mobal’s Voice + Data eSIM during our 15-Day Tōhoku Region Cherry Blossom Trip. The reception was good in most areas that we visited. We were able to connect the smartphone to the internet and make phone calls without any issues most of the time.

The only instance that was concerning was there were times that the phone couldn’t connect to the internet when we were at Hirosaki Park. It was probably because the park was packed with tourists who visited Hirosaki for the gorgeous cherry blossoms. The demand for reception probably exceeded the base station’s capacity.

We want to note that the eSIM lost connection when we were on the Shinkansen traveling through tunnels. But it is understandable. It is simply impossible for any signals when the train travels at high speed through various mountains in rural areas. 

Mobal’s eSIM/SIM Card Pick-Up Location at Haneda Airport

We chose to pick up the eSIM card upon arrival, just to experience what it is like. The pick-up location is very close to the arrival gate. After you clear the customs, turn right instead of going straight to where the train stations are.

When we got to the counter, the staff was there and asked for the order number and the passport. The entire process only took a few minutes and we received the QR code.

The QR code will take you to Mobal’s customer portal, MyAccount. You will need to register an account if you haven’t had one already. Once you are logged in, you will need to choose a plan from the options available. Each option has a different data allowance and eSIM expiry date. An eSIM activation request can then be sent to Mobal. 

A notification email was received soon after we sent the activation request. Then, we got the “Your Japan eSIM is Now Active!” email in 20 minutes. The email advises the phone number assigned and links to set up the eSIM.

Using an iPhone, the eSIM was downloaded to my phone smoothly. The phone prompted me to set up the eSIM straightaway and was connected to the internet in no time!

Is Pocket WiFi or an eSIM Card a Better Option for Your Next Japan Trip?

Click the photo for information that will help you decide whether to get a Pocket WiFi, a SIM card or an eSIM.

If a Japan eSIM card doesn’t sound like the best internet solution for your next Japan trip, consider purchasing a SIM or renting a Pocket WiFi.

Refer to our SIM Card, eSIM, or Pocket WiFi: Which One to Use in Japan article that answers all your questions about how to stay connected to the internet when you are in Japan!

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