If you are visiting Japan, unless you are familiar with Japanese and its writing you may have some serious issues understanding road signs in Japan. The good news is that many road signs in Japan follow international standards and use generic symbols and numbers, however where text is required it is often in Japanese and English, but some local road signs may well be in Japanese only. That said, if you are renting a car in Japan
the most important roads signs that you need to know are likely warning signs and you’ll recognize most of the standard symbols, but it would still be worth investing some time to learn as many road signs in Japan as possible before driving.
Warning Road Signs in Japan
Warning signs in Japan are often red or yellow to advise of potential danger. You should take note of any warning signs in Japan as they are designed to alert you of possible dangers ahead.
Information Road Signs in Japan
Information signs in Japan are the most frequently used road signs in Japan and are generally used on any type of road to provide road users with general information about the road they are using and the road ahead.
Mandatory Road Signs in Japan
Mandatory road signs in Japan are used where you are required to carry out a specific task, they are not suggestions, information or advisory signs, they must be adhered to and as such are arguably the most important roads signs in Japan that you need to know.
Priority Road Signs in Japan
Priority road signs in Japan are designed to clarify who has priority at the junction / road ahead. If driving in a country where you drive on the other side to the road, priorities are likely to the opposite of what you are familiar with, roundabouts being a notable difference.
Prohibitory Road Signs in Japan
Prohibitory road signs in Japan are used on all road types in Japan, often to restrict certain types of vehicles and certain manoeuvres such as prohibiting u-turns or setting maximum speeds.