Choosing the Best IC Card for Transportation in Sapporo City


When you arrive at your hotel and plan to explore the city using buses, subways, or trams, buying individual tickets for each ride can be quite cumbersome. While taking a taxi might seem easier, exploring by public transport often involves multiple transfers and can be time-consuming if you’re buying tickets each time.

Japan offers several IC cards for public transport, and deciding which one to choose can depend on your travel plans and where you arrive in Japan. Since most travelers arrive at airports, it’s advisable to obtain an IC card there that can be used across different transport networks. Fortunately, many IC cards are interchangeable within their respective regions:

  • Kitaca (Greater Sapporo): Ideal for exploring Sapporo and nearby areas.see more detail…
  • Suica (Greater Tokyo, Sendai, Niigata, Sapporo): Suitable for extensive travel in Tokyo and beyond.see more detail…
  • PASMO (Greater Tokyo): Similar to Suica, widely accepted in Tokyo and surrounding regions.see more detail…
  • manaca (Greater Nagoya): Recommended for Nagoya and its surrounding areas.
  • TOICA (Greater Nagoya): Used primarily in Nagoya and its nearby regions.
  • ICOCA (Greater Osaka): Useful for traveling around Osaka and beyond; also includes the ICOCA&HARUKA discount set for Kansai International Airport travelers.see more detail(PDF) ICOCA&HARUKA(discount set)
  • PiTaPa (Greater Osaka): Another option for transport in Osaka and neighboring areas.
  • nimoca (Greater Fukuoka): Serving Fukuoka and its vicinity.
  • SUGOCA (Greater Fukuoka, Saga, Oita, Kumamoto, Nagasaki, Kagoshima): Covering a wide area in Kyushu.
  • はやかけん (Hayakaken) (Greater Fukuoka)**: Another choice for travel in the Fukuoka area.see more detail…
  • For most travelers, we recommend considering Kitaca, Suica, TOICA, ICOCA, SUGOCA, or PASMO due to their wide acceptance and convenience across various regions in Japan.

We recommend Kitaca, Suica, TOICA, ICOCA, SUGOKA or PASMO.


Before using an IC card, carefully review its coverage area and restrictions. Remember, for long-distance travel between regions like Tokyo and Sapporo, you’ll need to purchase separate tickets or use a Japan Rail Pass for JR trains.

See these articles

How to get a Bus/Street car in Sapporo

Choosing the Best IC Card for Transportation in Sapporo City

How to Use the Subway in Sapporo

JR Hokkaido(JR北海道)