February 21-22, 2015
Iidabashi, Tokyo, Japan

Party Place

Tokyo Demo Fest 2015 takes place at the Institut français du Japon - Tokyo: Ichigaya-Funagawaracho 15, Shinjuku, Tokyo. The nearest train station is Iidabashi, on the Chuo/Sobu line.

After getting off at Iidabashi, walk toward South with the river on your left. After 300m, you will arrive at a gas station. Turn in front of the station and take the alley that goes up. Less than 50m later you will arrive at the entrance.


As soon as we have some time, we'll put the references of some hotels nearby.

Arriving in Tokyo

Arriving by plane

If you arrive by plane, which is the most likely, you will arrive either at Narita airport or at Haneda airport. If you have a choice you may prefer Haneda, which is much closer.

From Haneda

The fastest way to get to downtown Tokyo from Haneda is probably the Tokyo Monorail. It will get you to Hamamatsucho station, on the Yamanote line (山 手). From there you can go to Akihabara (秋葉原) where you then change for the Sobu line (総武, direction Shinjuku; if you're heading toward Funabashi or Chiba, you're doing it wrong). The station you need to get off at is Iidabashi (飯田橋).
Google Map summary: Haneda to Iidabashi.

An other option is the Keihin Electric Express Railway, which goes to Shinagawa. Once at Shinagawa, take the Yamanote line (山手) to Akihabara (秋葉原) and then change for Sobu line (総武, direction Shinjuku; if you're heading toward Funabashi or Chiba, you're doing it wrong). The station you need to get off at is Iidabashi (飯田橋).
More information:

At last, if your hotel is close to one of the major stations (Ikebukuro, Tokyo, Shibuya, Shinagawa or Shinjuku to mention a few), you can also take the so called Limousine bus, that will get you there directly in about 1 hour (depending on the destination) for 3000 yen.
For more information, see:

From Narita

There are three train lines to get you from the airport to downtown Tokyo:

We recommend you the Skyliner, which is easy to find at the airport terminal and will take you directly to Nippori station (日暮里) in about an hour. From there you can take the Yamanote line (山手) to Akihabara (秋葉原) and then take the Sobu line (総 武, direction Shinjuku; if you're heading toward Funabashi or Chiba, you're doing it wrong). The station you need to get off at is Iidabashi (飯田橋).
Google Maps summary: Narita to Iidabashi.

More information:
http://www.keisei.co.jp/keisei/tetudou/skyliner/us/airport_access.html http://www.keisei.co.jp/keisei/tetudou/skyliner/us/ticket.html

If you have the JR Pass though (more on this thereafter), you may prefer the Narita Express.

At last, if your hotel is close to one of the major stations (Ikebukuro, Tokyo, Shibuya, Shinagawa or Shinjuku to mention a few), you can also take the so called Limousine bus, that will get you there directly in about 2 hours (depending on the destination) for 3000 Yens.
For more information, see:

Arriving by train or bus

If you arrive by train, you can probably get off at Tokyo station (東京). If you come by bus you will probably arrive at one of the major stations of the Yamanote line (Tokyo, Shinjuku, Shibuya...).

Either way, you need to ride the Sobu line (総武), that stops at Shinjuku and Akihabara (秋葉原), or the Chuo line (中央) that stops at Shinjuku and Tokyo (東京). The station you need to get off at is Iidabashi (飯田橋).

Be careful if you ride the Chuo line, as there is an Express that doesn't stop at Iidabashi (only the Local does), so make sure you get in the right train.

Arriving by car

Seriously, I have no idea, so you're on your own. There are parkings pretty much everywhere but I don't know how easy it is to find a place. All I know is it's awfully expensive. Forget about free parking, to my knowledge there is no such thing.
P.S.: good luck.

Coming from abroad

Ok so you don't live in Japan, but you consider the real party is at the party place, sofa scening is for kids, and you're actually coming? Great! That's really awesome and we're definitely looking forward to seeing you.

Now you might not be familiar with Japan. It may even be your first time here? Well this information is for you. It is not meant to be comprehensive, and you will find more out there on Internet, but hopefully it can provide you with a survival kit if you're not familiar with traveling in Japan.

Public transportation

In Tokyo area there are essentially three kinds of public transport: train, bus, and taxi. Taxi will usually cost you 700 Yens for a ride, increasing rapidly. I wouldn't recommend it for any distance longer than a few districts. The railway network is dense, so usually train is really the way to go.

There are several railway companies in Tokyo, and although their networks are interconnected to an extent, they are discrete networks. This means if you can, you will want to have a ride without change from one company to another.

The main companies are Japan Rail (JR logo), Tokyo Metro (M logo), and Toei (leaf logo). When looking for some information, when you are told to use a line or get a train at a station, pay attention to which company it is if you don't want to end up missing your train because you wasted ten minutes in the wrong station.

On the bright side, trains are usually very clean, the service is very good, and stations are announced in English. But the most impressive point is the punctuality. You can expect to know the exact minute the subway will stop at your station. Seriously. Thus, you can schedule pretty tightly your rides.

To find your way through the railway networks, you can use the following websites:

The Yamanote line 山手

We mentioned this name already; the Yamanote line is probably the most famous train line in Tokyo. It's a circular train line that stops at many important stations, including big hubs like Tokyo, Ueno, Shinagawa and Shinjuku (the busiest station in the World), as well as famous places like Shibuya and Akihabara (秋葉原).

The line runs from 4h30 to 1h20, and when you ride it, you can expect to get to the opposite side of the loop in about half an hour.

Fun fact: with around 3.7 millions passenger a day, the Yamanote line alone carries more people than the entire London Underground with its 2.7 millions passengers.

Japan Rail Pass

If you plan to spend some time in Japan for tourism, you may be very interested in hearing about the Japan Rail Pass. This is a special pass for tourists that allow you to ride any JR line (but not other companies) for one, two or three weeks. You can only get it outside Japan, and the fare is quite interesting. As a rule of thumb, if you plan to buy a return ticket Tokyo - Osaka, the one week pass is already a good deal.

For more information:

Means of payment

Let's be clear: the Japanese banking system is flat out archaic. If you live in a country where you're used to carry little or no cash and pay everything by card, get ready for a cold shower.

In general few places accept the credit card (taxi have a "Card OK" sticker, which gives you a clue how little spread this is), and in places that do there is still a significant probability that your credit card won't work. I have even seen bank employees who didn't know what a VISA card was.

Your best chance to find a ATM that understand you card is by going to a convenience store (the so called combini) or to a post office.

This being said, it's not surprising Japanese people carry so much cash, and you can safely do so too. Also, there is absolutely no problem with paying a coffee with a 10000 Yens bill (the equivalent of a $100 bill).

Means of communication


You can easily rent a phone at the airport. Once you leave the airport, things are going to be much much more difficult, if possible at all.

More information:


Outlets in Japan are basically the same as in the US, except for the fact they are unpolarized and earth pins are mostly absent. Voltage is 100V, and frequency in Tokyo is 50Hz.
More info.
Even more info on Wikipedia.


Japan is not exactly the kind of country where you will find open WiFi spots every 50m. Even in restaurants and so on, you won't find WiFi access like you would expect to find in western Europe. Don't get fooled when you see a sticker saying there's WiFi: it's usually a carrier service or some sort of paywall.

If you desperately need an Internet access outside the party, you should pay attention when you choose your hotel. Some provide Internet access, some do not, some do with a prehistoric PC locked by a coin machine.

Internet cafes are common in Tokyo and you can usually find one at a walking distance pretty much everywhere. There you will have a private cublicle with computer, console, DVD player... as well as access to manga and sometimes shower.

Help, I'm lost!

To avoid embarrassing situations, it can be helpful to write (or print) the Japanese names of the stations you need, and learn to recognize them, especially since in some stations the maps don't have romanized names.

In case you still get lost, there are tiny local police stations everywhere, and police officers will prove very helpful.