Useful PDF to Carry Around in Japan

I am carrying around a lot of pdf files in my iPod touch. Train maps, time tables, work documents, reservation sheet. You name it. Most are on my evernote, but some really useful one are on pdf viewer application (I recommend “Good Reader” for iPhone/iPod touch) so that I can check offline. They are really handy, and maybe will save my life in the future. (You see what I mean below)

One day, it suddenly hit me… Are there English ones? My company has many foreign guests, and if there are such files, I could just zip them and mechanically send them from next time. Also they might be useful for travelers coming to this strange country.

After a couple of hours research last night, I created a list. So, here it is! I feel like there are more, though… I will try to keep them updated.



This is obvious choice. Don’t you just hate it when you are on train in foreign country, but not really sure where your train is going? My brother was once in Europe, and got onto a train in rush with uncertainty, ended up in different country! You could learn from him. Bring these files. 🙂


Tokyo Metro

Transportation Bureau in Nagoya, Aichi


Emergency Map

Japan is home of earthquake. We are expecting big earthquake (Tokai Earthquake) in near future. When it hits us, well I’m not quite sure what will happen. But it could happen when you are away from home. Probably all transportation will be suspended, if not destroyed. Then you have to find your way home, by walking. That’s when this emergency map can be life saver. It typically shows you where you can get water, where is shelter, etc. Still better to have paper one (you can find one in bookstore), but pdf version would be handy.

My home town, Nagoya, happened to have really good English map. Other major cities are not as great as Nagoya (probably their bookstores have better ones), but I leave links here anyway.






Product Manual

Nice idea if you have manual carrying around. I always forget what mode I should be using when taking picture on trip.

You can always find product manuals in manufacturer’s homepage. Here is manual for my camera.


For everything else

Print everything to pdf!

My favorite is primoPDF. You can “print” to pdf file, just like you print out to paper.

I use lots of pdf especially when I am abroad. Some examples are…

    • Flight/Hotel reservation
    • Google Route Map (very useful, but it usually creates tens of pages in paper)
    • Photocopy of Passport
      (Maybe not for everyone. I make it password-protected and erase when I’m back home)
    • Phone Numbers (insurance, store, hotel, etc)
    • Maps