Have a safe trip with travel vaccines and advice from medical professionals.

Travel health and safety for Japan 🇯🇵

Japan seamlessly blends ancient traditions with modern innovation, offering a plethora of tourist attractions, a distinctive culinary scene, and a rich cultural heritage.

Japanese cuisine is renowned worldwide, celebrated for its precision, freshness, and exquisite flavors. From sushi and sashimi to ramen and tempura, visitors can indulge in a diverse range of dishes. Each region of Japan has its own culinary specialties, such as okonomiyaki in Osaka, takoyaki in Kyoto, and Hiroshima-style oysters.

Japan’s cultural heritage is deeply intertwined with its traditions, arts, and customs. Visitors can witness the beauty of ancient temples and shrines, such as the iconic Kinkaku-ji (Golden Pavilion) in Kyoto or the Senso-ji Temple in Tokyo. Traditional arts like tea ceremonies, calligraphy, and kabuki theater provide a glimpse into Japan’s rich cultural tapestry. Experiencing a traditional onsen (hot spring) or staying in a ryokan (traditional inn) allows visitors to engage with Japanese customs and etiquette. 

Mount Fuji, an iconic symbol of Japan, offers breathtaking views and is a popular destination for hikers and nature enthusiasts. The serene beauty of Kyoto’s bamboo forest, the colorful foliage of Nikko’s Toshogu Shrine, and the picturesque landscapes of the Japanese Alps all contribute to Japan’s diverse natural wonders. 

While visiting Japan, it is important to be mindful of local customs and etiquette. Respectful behavior, such as removing shoes in certain places and following temple and shrine etiquette, is essential. It is also important to familiarize yourself with the local transportation system and be aware of any specific safety guidelines or travel advisories. 

Travel Immunizations for Japan

What vaccines do I need for Japan? Get all the information and vaccinations you need to minimize travel health risks.

Measles is a highly contagious respiratory disease. Anyone who is not protected against measles is at risk of being infected with it when travelling internationally.

  • Spreads through respiratory droplets and direct contact with infected individuals.
  • Symptoms initially resemble a common cold, followed by a characteristic rash fever, cough, runny nose, small, white spots inside the mouth and throat red eyes, sleepiness, and irritability.

Hepatitis B is a viral infection that targets the liver and may cause chronic infections. 

  • Its primary mode of transmission is through direct blood-to-blood contact with an infected person. It can also be transmitted through unprotected sex or sharing needles.
  • Symptoms may range from mild to severe, including fatigue, jaundice, and abdominal discomfort, nausea, vomiting and joint pain.

Rabies is a viral infection transmitted through animal bites.  

  • Symptoms may initially include fever, headache, and discomfort at the bite site, progressing to more severe neurological symptoms. Rabies is fatal if it is not treated before symptoms develop.
  • Rabies treatment may be limited or may not be available, therefore you may need to return to Canada for treatment.

Japanese encephalitis (JE) is a viral infection spread through the bite of an infected mosquito.

  • Visitors to areas experiencing a JE outbreak should also consider vaccination.  
  • Risk increases for individuals engaging in activities involving high contact with mosquitoes. 

Tick-borne encephalitis is a viral disease that affects the central nervous system. 

  • Spread to humans by the bite of infected ticks or when you consume unpasteurized milk products. 
  • A vaccine against TBE does exist but is only available in countries where the disease is present. 

We have made every effort to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the provided information, however, it is not feasible for us to update daily. Please book a virtual consultation with one of our Travel Medicine Professionals for current, personalized advice and answers to any questions you may have.

Health Canada strongly advises travelers ensure their routine vaccinations are up to date, including:

Chickenpox (Varicella)

Guards against the varicella-zoster virus, responsible for chickenpox.

Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis (DTaP)

Protects against three different bacterial infections.

Flu (Influenza)

Vaccination against seasonal influenza strains is essential.

Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR)

Provides immunity against all three diseases in one shot.


Essential for guarding against the poliovirus.


Offers protection against a viral infection that causes painful rashes.


The ongoing pandemic necessitates adherence to vaccination guidelines and preventive measures.

Japan Concerns / Health Canada Recommendations

Most common illness for travelers, from consuming contaminated food & water

  • Affects up to 70% of travelers and risks minimized with good hygiene and safe food/drink choices (eg. avoid raw foods, ice in drinks).
  • Symptoms may include diarrhea, vomiting, nausea, fever, bloating.

Consider getting vaccinated against typhoid, as it can be contracted through contaminated food and water.   

  • Symptoms of typhoid fever include a high fever, headache, weakness, fatigue, stomach pain, constipation or diarrhea, loss of appetite, and a rose-colored rash on the chest and abdomen. 

Hand, foot, and mouth disease

Viral illness that primarily affects infants and children.

  • Symptoms include fever, sore throat, rash on hands, feet, and mouth, and loss of appetite. 
  • Increased risk in overcrowded conditions. No vaccine or medication for prevention. 

Insect Bite Prevention

Many diseases are spread by the bites of infected insects such as mosquitoes, ticks, fleas or flies. Cover up and use mosquito repellents to protect against infection.   

  • Chikungunya: Symptoms include joint pains, fever, rash, and headache.    
  • Dengue: Symptoms include high-grade fever, severe headache, muscle and joint pain, rash, and nausea/vomiting.    
  • Zika: Symptoms include rash, itch, mild fever, headache, red eyes, muscle, and joint pains.    

Over the Counter Medications for Travel to Japan

Pain Relief

Medications such as acetaminophen (e.g., Tylenol) or ibuprofen (e.g., Advil) can be helpful for managing headaches, muscle pain, or fever. 

Anti-Diarrheal Medications

It’s advisable to carry over-the-counter anti-diarrheal medications like loperamide (e.g., Imodium) to treat mild cases of traveler’s diarrhea. However, it’s important to stay hydrated and seek medical attention if diarrhea persists or worsens. 


Antacids like Tums or Pepto-Bismol can provide relief from indigestion or heartburn, which can sometimes occur when trying new foods or experiencing changes in diet during travel. 

Allergy Medications

If you have known allergies, carrying antihistamines like cetirizine(e.g., Reactine) or diphenhydramine (e.g., Benadryl) can help manage allergic reactions to environmental allergens or insect bites. 

Motion Sickness Medications

If you are prone to motion sickness, consider carrying medication like dimenhydrinate (e.g., Gravol) to alleviate symptoms during long journeys or when traveling by car, train, or boat.

Sun Protection

It is essential to protect yourself from the sun’s harmful rays. Use sunscreen with a high SPF, wear hats, sunglasses, and lightweight, breathable clothing.

Medical Services and Facilities in Japan
  • Health care is very good. Service is available throughout the country. 
  • Services in English could be limited, especially in rural areas.  
  • The cost of healthcare services is similar to Canada.  
  • As a foreigner, you will likely have to pay in advance or provide a document proving that the bill will be paid prior to discharge. 
  • Make sure you get travel insurance that includes coverage for medical evacuation and hospital stays. 
Controlled Medications in Japan

Certain medications are banned in Japan, including: 

  • adderall 
  • amphetamines 
  • codeine 
  • methamphetamines 
  • pseudoephedrine 

You must have a doctor’s note that states your full name, address, the reason for use, and dosage, along with your prescribed medication. Local authorities may also request a detailed listing of the contents of the medication. 

Consular Assistance in Japan

Street Address: 3-38 Akasaka 7-chome, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan, 107-8503

Telephone: +81 (3) 5412-6200

Email: [email protected]

Website: https://www.Canada.ca/Canada-And-Japan

Street Address: 1-82 Watanabe-dori 2-chome, Chuo-ku, Fukuoka, Japan, 810-8720

Telephone: +81 (92) 521-5010

Email: [email protected]

Website: https://www.Canada.ca/Canada-And-Japan

Street Address: Hiroshima University of Economics, 5-37-1, Gion, Asaminami-ku, Hiroshima, Japan 731-0192

Telephone: +81 (82) 875-7530

Website: https://www.Canada.ca/Canada-And-Japan

Street Address: Nakato Marunouchi Building, 6F, 3-17-6 Marunouchi, Naka-ku, Nagoya-shi, Aichi-ken, Japan, 460-0002

Telephone: +81 (52) 972-0450

Email: [email protected]

Website: https://www.Canada.ca/Canada-And-Japan

Street Address: Proassist, Ltd., 4-33, 28th floor, Kitahamahigashi, Chuo-ku, Osaka, Japan 540-0031

Telephone: +81(6) -6946-6511

Email: [email protected]

Website: https://www.Canada.ca/Canada-And-Japan

Street Address: Big Palace Maruyama 2nd Floor, 26-1-3 Odori Nishi, Chuo-ku,Sapporo, Hokkaido 064-0820

Telephone: +81 (11) 643-2520

Email: [email protected]

Website: https://www.Canada.ca/Canada-And-Japan

We have made every effort to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the provided information, however, it is not feasible for us to update daily. Please book a virtual consultation with one of our Travel Medicine Professionals for current, personalized advice and answers to any questions you may have.

In case of emergency, dial:
  • 110 for Police
  • 119 for Firefighters
  • 119 for Medical Assistance

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