General Travel Information for International Participants

Printer-friendly version of  “General Information for Participants” in PDF-format [Download]

Before Flying to Japan


Those participants from non-visa-waiver countries may need official documents from the Congress organizer. Please contact your local Japanese embassy or consular office ( for the specific requirements. We will prepare the documents through our agent (ISS, Inc.). The request can be made in the registration form. The agent fee applies for the documents (waived for participants who are invited as speakers).

Air tickets

The Congress will be held during a period of consecutive holidays (March 19 and 20), one of the peak tourist periods in Japan. It is therefore recommended to book your flight as soon as possible in order to get a less expensive and convenient air ticket.

Japan Rail Pass

If you are a resident outside of Japan and planning further travel after or before the Congress, you can take advantage of the Japan Rail Pass. This pass covers virtually all Japan Railways (JR) trains including the Shinkansen (Super Express) trains, airport express shuttle trains, etc. The Japan Rail Pass can be purchased outside of Japan only. For details please contact travel agencies at your location or visit the website


The Congress organizer cannot be held responsible for accidents. Participants are encouraged to purchase travel insurance in their home country prior to departure.

Upon Your Arrival at the Airport


It is recommended that you obtain Japanese yen in cash upon your arrival at the airport. At international airports, such as Narita and Haneda, currency exchange counters are usually open during the time of flight arrivals. Please note that during the first two days of the Congress, which fall on holidays, banks will be closed.

Foreign credit, debit and cash cards can be used at Japan Post Bank ATMs and Seven-Eleven (Seven Bank) ATMs, including those at the international airports, for cash withdrawal. There are also SMBC Trust Bank (former CITI Bank) ATMs at Narita and Haneda Airports. Credit cards are generally accepted at hotels, larger stores, and restaurants, but not many smaller stores and restaurants. (For general information for foreign visitors please refer to:

Wi-Fi Router

At Narita and Haneda Airports, cellular phones, SIM cards, and Wi-Fi routers can be rented. See the following websites for more information: (Narita Airport) (Haneda Airport)

For information about free wi-fi spots in Japan, please refer to:

Access to the Venue

Train Tickets
It is highly recommended to get a Suica (or Pasmo) card at the airport train station ticket counter. This is a rechargeable e-money card which can be used for almost all train and bus lines in Japan, and also for shopping at convenience stores. The deposit of 500 yen will be refunded when you return the card at a ticket counter at the end of your travels.

From Narita and Haneda Airports
Tokyo University of the Arts, the Congress venue, is located within a 10-minute walking distance from the JR (Japan Rail) Ueno Station. There are several options to get to Ueno station from Narita and Haneda International Airports.

1) Recommended Connections from Narita Airport to Ueno station:
Option 1 (comfort):
Take the Keisei Skyliner from Narita Airport Station and get off at Nippori Station (about 40 min., 2470 yen, Skyliner ticket required). Transfer to the JR Yamanote Line bound for Ueno and get off at Ueno Station (2 stops, 4 min., 140 yen). Please find the ascent stairs from the platform to get to the Park Exit.
Option 2 (less expensive):
Take the Keisei Line Limited Express bound for Ueno and get off at Nippori Station (about 74 min., 1030 yen). Transfer to the JR Yamanote Line bound for Ueno and get off at Ueno Station (2 stops, 4 min., 140 yen). Please find the ascent stairs from the platform to get to the Park Exit.

2) Recommended connection from Haneda Airport to Ueno Station:
Take the Tokyo Monorail from the Haneda Airport Station and get off at Hamamatsucho Station (about 20 min., 490 yen). From there, take the JR Yamanote or Keihin-Tohoku Line (platform 1 or 2) and get off at the Ueno station (about 13 min., 170 yen).

Access to the Congress venue from JR Ueno Station
There are many exits in the JR Ueno Station. To go to Tokyo University of the Arts, exit at the Park Exit and walk across Ueno Park. (See the map on page 5 for more information). At the Tokyo University of the Arts there are two gates across the street. The gate to the right, walking from the Ueno Park, is the entrance of the Congress venue (Faculty of Music).
[walk route]

Other ways to access the venue

  • Nezu Station (Tokyo Metro Chiyoda Line, 10 min., take Exit 1)
    [walk route]
  • Ueno Station (Tokyo Metro Ginza and Hibiya Lines, 14 min., take Exit 7 and walk across Ueno Park) [walk route]
  • Uguisudani Station (JR Yamanote Line, 11 min., take South Exit) [walk route]
  • Keisei-Ueno Station (14 min., take Ikenohata Exit and walk across Ueno Park) [walk route]
  • Nippori Station (JR Yamanote and Keisei Line, 14 min., take South Exit and walk across the Yanaka Cemetery)[walk route]

At the Congress Venue

Registration & Information Desk

When you arrive at the Tokyo University of the Arts, follow the signs towards Hall 1, where the Registration & Information Desk is located (see the campus map of page 7). It is open from 12: to 17:00 on Sunday, March 19, and from 8:45 to 18:00 from Monday, March 20 through Thursday, March 23. Please pick up your congress bag upon arrival. The congress bag contains the booklet, your name tag, and information concerning the Congress. Information on sightseeing, restaurants and social events etc. is also included. Please kindly be reminded to wear your name tag at all times for access to the rooms and halls.


There are 2 card-operated photocopiers located in the 1st floor of the building. A copy card can only be purchased at the co-op store located in the 2nd floor of the Student Union. (The store is closed on Sunday and Monday.) More conveniently, you could go to one of the numerous 24-hour convenience stores found all over the city, such as Seven Eleven, Lawson, and Family Mart, where color photocopiers are available (you can also print out PDF documents).
Bulletin Board
Daily information, including schedule and room changes, will be put on the Bulletin Board near the Registration and Information Desk. You could also leave personal messages on the board.
Dining Options
On campus, there are two university cafeterias but they will be closed on March 19 and 20. There will be plenty of options near the University. A map with eating options will be distributed on site. There are also several vending machines for cold and hot drinks and light snacks, located near Hall 1.
PLEASE NOTE: eating is strictly prohibited in classrooms and halls. Since there is very little space available for eating inside the University buildings, we strongly encourage Congress participants to go outside to dine.

Useful Internet Sites

The official website of IMS 2017 (Updates concerning IMS 2017 is posted here):
Japan National Tourist Organization (JNTO) (General Information for foreign travelers in Japan, e.g. customs, transportation, postal and telephone services, money exchange, etc. The site is available in English, Chinese, Korean, French, German, Italian, Russian, Portuguese and Spanish):
Tokyo University of the Arts:
Site for checking train schedule and fare (very useful):