Covid-19 PCR test
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How to get a free Covid-19 test in Tokyo – if you have no symptoms

The Japanese government has extended its free Covid-19 testing scheme to the end of June 2022

Emma Steen
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Emma Steen
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As a precautionary measure following the end of the quasi-state of emergency, the Japanese government has decided to extend its campaign to provide residents with free Covid-19 tests. These tests are specifically for those who aren’t experiencing any Covid-19 symptoms, but wish to be tested for peace of mind. The scheme was originally expected to last until the end of April, but will now be available to the end of June 2022.

There are two types of Covid-19 tests available for free under this scheme: the PCR test (a nucleic acid amplification test) and the rapid antigen test (antigen qualitative test). According to The Mainichi, Japan’s economic revitalisation minister Daishiro Yamagiwa is urging people to take advantage of the free antigen qualitative test in particular as it shows a result faster. 

To get tested, simply make a reservation at a designated facility online and show up on the day with a completed inspection application form and a valid ID (Japanese health insurance card, residence card, driver's licence or passport). However, you will have to be a resident of the area the clinic is in, meaning the free tests in Tokyo are only available to Tokyo residents. You’ll find a list of the testing facilities that are conducting free tests here (in Japanese only). Here are a few places that offer free tests in Tokyo:

T Care Clinic Hamamatsucho

This facility has clinics in both Tokyo and Osaka that offer free PCR tests for local residents.
Certificates confirming negative results for Covid-19 are available for an additional fee. 

HIS Shinjuku East Exit PCR Inspection Center

This Shinjuku facility offers free PCR tests for Tokyo residents only. Make your reservation online here.

Shibuya PCR Center Miyamasu-zaka

This Shibuya facility offers free PCR tests for Tokyo residents only. If you live outside of Tokyo, you can still get tested for a fee of ¥2,980. Make your reservation online here.

Welcia pharmacies

Welcia offers both the PCR test and the rapid antigen test for free. The pharmacy chain has branches all over Tokyo including Minato, Chiyoda, Koto, Sumida and Setagaya. See the pharmacy’s official website to find the closest store near you that offers the test you want. 

To learn more about the different types of Covid-19 tests, see this explainer from the WHO

This article was originally published on December 27 2021 and updated on March 25 2022.

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