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Honeymooning in Japan 2010-06-22 03:47:17

A Geek's Honeymoon Guide to Tokyo, Pt 2: What to Bring

Yesterday, I gave you an overview of when to plan your geeky honeymoon to Tokyo, and now I'll tell you what you should bring. Although I have plenty of travel faves, there are a few essentials you'll want to pack along in your suitcase or backpack.

For example, if you don't speak Japanese, a few translation apps can be a lifesaver when you are navigating the subway. It's a very complex, yet advanced system underground, and it's easy to get lost and confused. Google Goggle's new translation feature is perfect for your trip abroad — just snap a photo of what you want translated, and Google Goggles will do the heavy lifting. Other apps you may find helpful are Talk to Me and Trippo Mondo for Android, Google Translate on your phone's web browser, and the Tokyo Subway Map app ($2) for your iPhone.

Find out what other gadgets I'd pack along after the jump.

  • A quality camera — My Canon T1i played a key role in capturing images from my trip to Japan, and it's essential to document your honeymoon as well.
  • A smartphone — All the apps you'll need to translate, get directions, and find good restaurants will be in your pocket with a smartphone. Be sure to talk to your wireless carrier about roaming charges, and set up a travel plan if you can before you take off.
  • iPad or Netbook — There's plenty of places to hop online with free WiFi in Japan, so toting a lightweight netbook or iPad would be a great way to update your Flickr stream with new pics, post to Facebook, and make a few calls via Skype to the folks back home.
  • Nintendo DS — Kids and geeks aren't the only ones playing with a Nintendo DS in Japan — people of all ages whip it out for a quick game on the subway, or during long train rides.
  • Ereader — Speaking of long rides, your flight to and from Japan, not to mention any traveling you do around the country (via JapanRail), will give you lots of time to catch up on some of your Summer reading titles. Keep an ereader in your backpack to pass the time.

Tomorrow, we'll start tackling what to see while you're in Tokyo, so stay tuned!

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Tech Tech 6 years
You're right, cherryblossom, taking a cell phone for the sake of having a cell phone isn't really a good idea. However, making sure you have a smartphone for the reasons I listed above — mostly the translation and transportation apps — can be invaluable. Some of these apps will work with or without a WiFi connection, but since there are so many WiFi hotspots in Japan (whether at coffee shops, open shopping areas, or truly free WiFi at hotels), it's a fabulous tool to have with you.
cherryblossom cherryblossom 6 years
I don't mean to be a stick in the mud but I work for a cellular provider and taking your phone to Japan is a total Moot point. It probably won't work over there. Cell phones work on frequencies depending on the current technology in any given country, Japan is so technologically advanced that the greater percentage of American/ Canadian cell phones don't work on Japans cellular networks frequencies. However you can rent a phone while you are there that does work on their network and pick your phone up when you go home.
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