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Subway in Tokyo

The subway is very convenient to move around central Tokyo.
We can find the stations everywhere in the area.
But it has many lines, so the network is very complex. I had lived in the Tokyo area for over 20 years, but I was not able to learn the network surely.

But, you have nothing to fear.
You can find the English route map at every station.
And you can reach your destination using the line through or after changing lines one or two times.

Tokyo Subway Route map (pdf)

Additionally, you had better know the followings.

Tokyo Metro Line and Toei Line

Subway in Tokyo has 13 lines.
And these are operated by two business units.
One is "Tokyo Metro". It is a private railroad company, and has 9 lines.
The other is "Toei". It is operated by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Bureau of Transportation. It has 4 lines.

Commonly both lines appear in route maps.
But when you must change to a line of the other company on the way, you have to buy the ticket with connecting the other company's line.

Tokyo Metro official website
Toei Transportation Information

Direct connection between subway and other railroads

Most subway lines connect directly to the lines of the other railroad companies at the terminal station or a way station.
So most trains run through such stations. Therefore the destination of most trains usually shows a station name out of the subway line.

If you are concerned, you had better ask the station attendant which train to get on.
But I think that most trains stop at all stations within the subway line.

Line color, Line symbol and Station number

For foreign passengers, each line is assigned with a specific color, and each station is given a specific line symbol (1 alphabetic character) and station number.

Of course, it is very good that you can memorize the station name in Japanese.
But when a station name is alphabetized, mostly it is a long word.
Please utilize them.

List of subway in Tokyo

Line Color & Symbol km Main stations on the line
Tokyo Metro Lines
Ginza Line Orange G 14.3 Asakusa / Ueno / Nihonbashi / Ginza / Shinbashi / Akasaka-mitsuke / Omote-sando / Shibuya  
Marunouchi Line Red M 24.2 Ikebukuro / Korakuen / Otemachi / Tokyo (station) / Ginza / Akasaka-mitsuke / Shinjuku / Nakano-sakaue / Ogikubo  
m 3.2 Nakano-sakaue / Honancho  
Hibiya Line Silver H 20.3 Kita-Senju / Ueno / Akihabara / Ningyocho / Ginza / Hibiya / Roppongi / Ebisu / Naka-Meguro
Tozai Line Sky blue T 30.8 Nakano / Takadanobaba / Iidabashi / Otemachi / Nihonbashi / Monzen-nakacho / Urayasu / Nishi-Funabashi
Chiyoda Line Green C 24.0 Kita-Ayase / Kita-Senju / Nishi-Nippori / Yushima / Otemachi / Hibiya / Akasaka / Omote-sando / Meiji-Jingu-mae / Yoyogi-uehara
Yurakucho Line Gold Y 28.3 Wako-shi / Ikebukuro / Iidabashi / Nagatacho / Yurakucho / Tsukishima / Shin-Kiba
Hanzomon Line Purple Z 16.8 Shibuya / Omote-sando / Akasaka-mitsuke / Otemachi / Suitengu-mae / Oshiage
Nanboku Line Emerald green N 21.3 Meguro / Shirokane-Takanawa / Akasaka-mitsuke / iidabashi / Komagome / Akabane-iwabuchi
Fukutoshin Line Brown F 20.2 Wako-shi / Ikebukuro / Shinjuku-sanchome / Shibuya
Toei Lines
Asakusa Line Rose pink A 18.3 Nishi- Magome / Gotanda / Sengakuji / Mita / Higashi-Ginza / Asakusa / Oshiage
Mita Line Blue I 26.5 Meguro / Mita / Hibiya / Otemachi / Jinbocho / Sugamo / Nishi-Takashimadaira
Shinjuku Line Leaf green S 23.5 Shinjuku / Ichigaya / Jinbocho / Higashi-Nihonbashi / Ojima / Motoyawata
Oedo Line Ruby red E 27.8 Hikarigaoka / Tocho-mae / Shinjuku / Aoyama-itchome / Roppongi / Shiodome / Tsukishima / Ryogoku / Ueno-Okachimachi / Iidabashi / Tocho-mae  

 : Direct connection to other railroads

Ginza Line
Marunouchi Line
Hibiya Line
Tozai Line
Chiyoda Line
Yurakucho Line
Hanzomon Line Nanboku Line
Fukutoshin Line
Asakusa Line Mita Line
Shinjuku Line Oedo Line
Photo by Railstation.net

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