Typhoons in Japan : What you need to know
The typhoon season in Japan is usually from July until October. If you are planning to travel to Japan during this period, check the weather forecast beforehand so that you don't find yourself stuck in the middle of one.
Basic information on typhoons in Japan
Super Typhoon destruction
The annual number of tyhpoon cases in Japan is around 20. Out of these cases, about 2 or 3 will tranform into powerful typhoons which are called “Super Typhoons”. These are the ones you have to look out for.
Typhoons spawned in the Pacific Ocean make their way to places such as Okinawa, Wakayama/Mie (Kii Peninsula), Chiba Prefecture, and other coastal areas on the Pacific Ocean side. These locations are at high risk and may sustain heavy damage.
Super Typhoon destruction
Collect information about the typhoon
If you find out a typhoon is on its way, the first thing to do is collect as much information as you can. Japan's TV weather broadcasts are highly informative. The first channel you should check out is NHK (Nippon Hoso Kyokai) which is the national broadcasting channel.
The information is provided in Japanese, but it will give you a good idea of how big the typhoon is. If the typhoon is dangerous, a QR code will be displayed at the bottom of the screen where foreigners can visit a website for helpful information. Go to NHK World or get the lastest information via the app.
If you want to gather information a little more easily, go to the Meteorological Agency website.
You can even collect information via Twitter.
Identifying the route of the typhoon
Check your route beforehand
Japan's major airports (Tokyo, Osaka, and Nagoya) are located on the Pacific side making them easy targets for typhoons. In the case of a super typhoon, all flights may be canceled.
Check the official website of each airport
If you already have plans to go on a flight, just remember that the traffic to the airport could be hellish. Going to the airport early than usual or checking for a vacant hotel room in advance might be a good way to go about it.
In the worst case scenario, planes may be grounded for up to two days. Consider bringing along some water, food, spare battery, etc.
In the City
If you are in the city, it is unlikely that the shop will close unless it is a super typhoon. However, trains are more susceptible to typhoons. If you want to get real-time information about train delays in Japan, check out the "Japan Travel by NAVITIME app".
Read article: Real-Time Train Status in JapanArticle
Japan Travel by NAVITIME app
If an “evacuation advisory” is issued, follow the instructions promptly. The evacuation sites are mostly designated elementary schools. The evacuation sites provide food, shelter, and will keep you updated on any new developments.
Tips & Helpful links
Here are some keywords you should know when dealing with environmental disasters.
・特別警報 Special Alarm ＞警報 Warning ＞ 注意報 Caution
・川の氾濫 : River flood
・避難してください : Please evacuate
・(鉄道の)計画運休 : (Railroads) Planned suspension
JNTO is not only just a site/app that provides comprehensive disaster prevention information, it also provides helpful safety tips. It may be just what you need for when you're in a pinch.
- Free WiFi during disasters
A public wireless LAN service (public Wi-Fi) is free to use for anybody in the affected areas. This is so that you can check safety notifications without relying on mobile phone networks in the event of a large-scale disaster such as an earthquake or flood. The SSID for the free WiFi is “00000JAPAN”.
To connect to the WiFi, all you need to do is select the network “00000JAPAN” (SSID) at your WiFi settings screen.
Avoid entering personal information (banking, shopping, etc) since this is a public network with little to none secutiry.
Free WiFi during disasters
- Main Airport links
New Chitose Airport
Sendai International Airport
Narita International Airport
Tokyo International Airport (Haneda)
Chubu Centrair International Airport
Kansai International Airport
Open the mapCheck access information
- Narita Airport Terminal 1
- Chiba Pref