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Pocket WiFi or Visitor Sim 2014/4/8 20:42
Hey guys and girls,

I will arrive in Japan after Golden Week for one month. I go through Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto and some other places around the cities. I will keep my phone (Sony Xperia Z) with me and want some internet on in (to send photo's, have some small talk and for Google Maps). That's all I need.

There are two options I can do.

Pocket Wifi
+ Faster and unlimited internet for my phone
- Not cheaper
- Need to charge it
- Something extra in my bags all day

Visitor Sim 1GB (14 Days)
+ Easy to put in my phone
+ Nothing to put in my bag
+ No need to charge
+ Cheaper
- Two sim cards for 30 days, but still cheaper

As you can see, the Visitor Sim looks better. 1GB is enough for 14 days I think. Does it work good enough, because otherwise I don't see any option why I need to go for a pocket wifi. Only have my phone and camera with me, so no other electronica to use WiFi for.

by Fiinawy  

Re: Pocket WiFi or Visitor Sim 2014/4/11 05:53
I'm visiting Japan this weekend, and I've opted for the pocket wifi. The SIM might be more convenient, but if you are constantly surfing maps, and looking up info, you may be surprised at how much data you use up. Then again, if you think you are only going to use data at the very minimum level, then the SIM is the way to go.
by Declanny rate this post as useful

Re: Pocket WiFi or Visitor Sim 2014/4/11 05:58
sending photos use a lot of data.. even uploading to facebook and twitter used up a lot of bytes. I opt for pocket wifi for my 12 days trip this april.
by Shandy (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Pocket WiFi or Visitor Sim 2014/4/11 11:13
Unless you plan to stay at cheap hostels with no internet, just take the unlimited SIM. It's still fast enough for Google Maps, and then you don't need to worry about using up all your data. Then you can use your hotel's internet for the heavy stuff. You might also want to use eConnect instead of b-mobile, their SIMs are for 30 days so you don't need to buy two.
by Firas rate this post as useful

Re: Pocket WiFi or Visitor Sim 2014/4/12 08:30
The Xperia Z has a 13MP camera so your photos will take up about 3Mb each according to a photographyblog.com review. Your camera may have a better sensor so the files from that may be larger. You may want to resize them a bit before e-mailing/posting them. Without access to a laptop/netbook, you'll need to do that on your Smartphone. If you back-up online you'll be uploading your photos at full size (an alternative is copying to a second memory card). Check card slot sizes and adaptors. I don't know whether it's a guide for you, but I took over a thousand photos in a little over a month and could easily have taken 2 or 3 times that-there's a lot to snap in Japan.

If you go with the SIM don't let your Android apps update on it-they do this persistently and will use up your data ration. Use available WiFi connections (ie. Starbucks) when you can.

Given your options, I'd go with the pocket WiFi or even both, toggling between as needs/power demand. It's as easy to recharge one device as three. I found that using a netbook with the apartment WiFi and a (memory card slot-equipped) tablet with the supplied pocket WiFi was a reliable mix allowing me to edit and back-up photos taken with my camera. I took two 'non-smart' phones, a Nokia 515 'candybar' and an unlocked Japanese flip-phone for 1Seg TV, both on roaming, only using them to make calls within Japan and for emergencies (no net usage which is very expensive on roaming).

You might not need GoogleMaps as much as you think when out and about. I planned trips with GoogleMaps and StreetView the night before on the apartment WiFi, making some rough sketches of directions on a small paper pad I kept in my pocket. Hardly any Japanese streets have name signage and addresses make little sense, so you'll be navigating visually (3rd street along on the right etc) and using the omnipresent signs and public maps that offer directions to most points of tourist interest. Also, print off, fold up and keep a metro/rail map in your pocket. Much easier than tech.

I recall seeing a Western couple navigating the metro by staring fixedly at their iPad to the exclusion of everyone and everything around them, ignoring all the perfectly adequate signs. I guess everyone will have their own tech mix that they feel comfortable with. Test it at home before you go to make sure that you can do everything that you might want to with it, perhaps measuring your data usage as it can be deceptive. Have a fabulous time!
by David (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Pocket WiFi or Visitor Sim 2014/4/13 22:16
Thanks for the help guys. Just ordered a Pocket Wifi at Japan-Wireless.com! :D
by Fiinawy rate this post as useful

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