I often receive emails from our readers about taxis in Japan and whether they have child seats available. Here is a recent question and my answer below!
My husband and I are moving to Tokyo soon with our 6 month old child. I have two questions: we are currently debating whether or not to buy a car in Tokyo. We will be living in central Tokyo. Is it necessary to buy a car?
If we decide to not buy a car, I was just wondering if I did want to take a taxi in Japan, what are the regulations regarding car seats?
Thanks for providing such a useful blog!
That’s exciting that you will be moving to Tokyo! Personally I wouldn’t buy a car as it is easy to walk and catch trains everywhere (and sometimes it can be hard to find parking), but it is really up to you and what you feel most comfortable with. We often rent a car when we want to go away for the weekend, for example to Nikko or Mt Fuji. You could always come and check everything out, and then if you feel you’d prefer a car you could always buy one. The other benefit of walking and catching trains is that it is such good exercise! I find I do so much walking that I don’t need to do anything else:)
Regarding taxis, they don’t have child seats so I put the seat belt around myself and have my son strapped to my front in our Ergo baby carrier. It is not as safe as a proper child seat of course, but it is the best option available. I checked this topic on the Tokyo Mothers Group (closed group on Facebook – highly recommend joining!), and it seems most mothers do the same.
There is also a taxi service called “Cocoro Taxi” where half of the taxi drivers are women and they provide infant & child seats and special services for mothers with children. The website is in Japanese, but if you ask a friend I’m sure they can help you register and book a taxi through this site:
Hope this helps and all the best!
7 thoughts on “Catching a taxi in Japan – child seats”
Thanks for your helpful advice regarding this topic. I’ll be traveling to Japan in May with my 8-month old daughter and was planning on bringing her car seat to use in taxis (it also can be used as a stroller seat on our stroller so I expect to use it regularly while we’re visiting). Do you know if it’s possible to strap a car seat into a taxi in Japan using a seat belt as we do here in the US? Any help much appreciated!
Hi Alicia, Thanks for your message. The seat belts in taxis in Japan are the usual pull across style for adults with Emergency Locking Retractors (ELR), so you just pull the seat belt across and buckle it in. I personally haven’t used a child car seat in taxis before so I can’t guarantee, but if your car seat can be fitted safely using these seat belts then I think it should be okay. Have a great trip! Kate
Your website is very helpful. I was wondering if you knew if the rules/regulations were the same in Osaka? We are travelling to Osaka with our 4 month old, and were unsure if we should bring a car seat for the limited taxi rides we would be taking. Thank you in advance.
HI Laura, I searched about this in Japanese and my understanding is that the regulations are the same across Japan. If you would like a taxi with a child seat, I found this taxi service in Osaka that provides special services with child seats: http://www.kkg-osaka.jp/service/kosodate.html
Thank you for this information! very helpful!
Thanks for your helpful advice. We were planning on taking a few airport bus shuttles while traveling in Japan. Do you think we will need to bring a car seat to use, or can we use the Ergo like you suggested with taxis?
Hi Geeta, thanks for your message. Yes you can use your Ergo on the airport buses. Just be careful to not put the belt around your baby (only put the belt around yourself). There are safety tips about this on the internet.