Rules & Etiquette
Keep in mind that when living in housing complexes or apartments, the noise you make in your house or apartment might be heard by your neighbors. Try to keep noise to a minimum, especially late at night and early in the morning, as this might annoy your neighbors. (For example, be careful of the volume of televisions, radios, musical instruments, speaking in loud voices, vacuum cleaners, washing machines, showers/baths, opening and closing doors, etc.)
Use of shared areas in multi-dwelling housing
Hallways and stairs are communal areas. In an emergency, such as an earthquake or fire, these are used for evacuation. Do not leave your personal items there.
Neighborhood/community associations (chōnaikai or jichikai) are formed independently by the community and allow residents to help each other and build friendships. Membership is voluntary. Joining such an organization will help you access information about life in the community. Moreover, they offer help in times of disaster. To find out how to join your neighborhood/community association, ask someone in charge, such as the chairperson, or contact the Community Revitalization Division of your local ward office.
If you own a dog that is 91 days or older, you must register them. You can register your dog at the Animal Care Center or any private veterinarian. A license tag will be issued after registration. You must contact the Animal Care Center in the following cases:
● The dog’s owner changes.
● The owner’s address changes.
● The dog dies.
● The dog bites someone.
Rabies vaccination (once a year)
If you own a dog, you must vaccinate them against rabies. Vaccinate your dog at a group vaccination or at a private veterinarian. Group vaccinations are held every year in Hiroshima City between April and May. Once your dog has received a rabies vaccination, you will receive a vaccination certificate.
Note: Dogs must wear their license tags and vaccination certificates.
Animal Care Center
Address: 11-27 Fujimi-cho, Naka-ku, Hiroshima city
In Japan, cars, motorcycles, and bicycles keep to the left and pedestrians walk on the right. Pedestrians have the right of way at crosswalks.
When riding a bike, you must follow these rules:
● Do not ride your bike under the influence of alcohol. Do not ride two to a bike. Do not ride side-by-side with another cyclist.
● Turn your lights on at nighttime.
● Obey traffic lights at crossings; stop and make sure it is safe.
📝 Unattended bicycles and motorcycles
Make sure to park your bicycle or motorcycle in a designated parking space. Bicycles and motorcycles left unattended in other places not only get in the way of pedestrians but can also cause accidents and obstruct emergency services.
All bicycles and motorcycles parked in areas marked with the sign to the right will be removed and impounded immediately. If your bicycle or motorcycle is impounded, be sure to claim it from the impound lot.
Hiroshima City West Bicycle and Motorcycle Impound Lot
Hours: Everyday 10:30 am – 7 pm (excluding national holidays and December 29 to January 3)
Fees: 2,200 yen for bicycles / 4,400 yen for scooters (50cc or less) / 5,500 yen for motorcycles
Required Items: The vehicle’s key and some form of identification (e.g. driver’s license, student ID, health insurance card, etc.)
※ Vehicles are stored for one month. Vehicles not claimed within one month will be disposed of by the City.
2) Cars and motorbikes
● You need a license to drive a car or motorbike. You must not drive your vehicle if you do not have your license in your possession (if you have forgotten it at home, etc.).
● Drivers and all passengers must wear seatbelts.
● Children under 6 years old must be placed in child car seats.
● You must wear a helmet when riding a motorbike.
● It is illegal to use a mobile phone while driving or to drive under the influence of alcohol. There are particularly strict penalties for drunk driving. Do not drink and drive.
3) Public transport
It is good to be aware of the following etiquette when riding the bus, train, or other public transport:
● Wait in line for public transport; do not cut in front of people who have been waiting longer than you.
● Do not smoke on public transport.
● Try not to talk on the phone while riding public transport.
● Keep the volume of music (etc.) to a minimum.
📝 Using public transport
Start Hiroshima! produces videos about a variety of useful topics, including public transport.
Produced in Japanese; subtitles available in English, Chinese, Korean, and Vietnamese.