Tokyo’s Top Co-Working Spaces for Freelancers, Digital Nomads, and Entrepreneurs

Anyone doing business on the go in Tokyo can relate to the following experience. You’ve got some downtime between appointments and need a calm, quiet place to catch up on some e-mails or polish your latest literary masterpiece.
As you scramble through the city’s endless maze of concrete, glass, and steel, you spot a Starbucks—an international beacon of warm drinks and Wi-Fi. Relief transforms into anxiety as you realize that there’s probably no room for you in that Starbucks on the horizon.
Sure, you might be able to squeeze into an overlooked space somewhere inside, but that will only guarantee that you’ll be elbow to elbow with other patrons, your concentration constantly fragmented by the din of chatty school girls and busy baristas.
Such is the plight of many freelancers, digital nomads, and fresh-faced entrepreneurs in Tokyo. Thankfully, a better solution is on the rise: the co-working space.
When considering co-working spaces, perhaps world famous brands like WeWork come to mind. Major industry players like this are excellent options for more established companies with deep pockets. However, writers, coders, and designers just starting out on their own need more affordable and flexible options。
Having been a solopreneur for over two years, the following co-working spaces (in no particular order) have best served my needs when it comes to flexibility, location, and pricing. Additionally, several of them offer value-added features such as official address registration—critical for those who wish to boost their credibility on the Tokyo business scene. Pricing and features change often, so be sure to get the latest details by visiting the homepages for the co-working spaces featured below.


For freelancers and digital nomads

These co-working spaces are best for those who simply need the occasional quiet place to work on the go. They offer drop-in co-working at affordable rates, but most of them lack higher-level options such as company registration and reception services.

Basis Point

  • – Website: https://basispoint.tokyo/
  • – Locations: Shimbashi, Jimbocho, Ueno, Gotanda, Yokohama
  • – Membership requirement: Yes (free)
  • – Company address registration: Unavailable
  • – Perks: free soft drinks (hot coffee and specialty tea are available for a nominal fee
Basis Point Shimbashi is ironically located right above a Starbucks.

As a Tokyo resident with clients throughout the city, Basis Point is the place I frequent the most. The clean, cozy design and soothing lighting is always welcoming, making it easy to slip into a comfortable seat for a focused and productive work session. Several convenient locations provide a consistent experience whenever (or wherever) you just need 30 minutes to knock out some e-mails or a few hours to draft some long-form content.

Keep in mind that you need to register (for free) as a member before you can start using Basis Point, so this might not be the best option for non-residents. If, however, you plan on being in Tokyo for an extended period of time, Basis Point beats your local coffee shop any day of the week.

 Base Point

As far as I’m aware, Base Point has no relation to the Basis Point chain featured above. Instead, Base Point is a quaint co-working space located in Nishi-Shinjuku. Base Point stands out as one of the few affordable co-working options in the Shinjuku area. It’s also the only place on this list that has its own café, adding an extra layer of convenience for when you are pushing to meet a tight deadline on an empty stomach. For an in-depth look at Base Point, check out Tofugu’s detailed review.

Tsukuru Work (Presented by Kinko’s)

  • – Website: https://tsukuru.kinkos.co.jp/
  • – Location: Nishi-Shinjuku
  • – Membership requirement: Yes (free)
  • – Company address registration: Unavailable
  • – Perks: free coffee

With pricing starting at 500 yen per half hour, the brand new Tsukuru Work is on the premium end of the drop-in co-working spectrum. However, its pristine aesthetics and prime location in the Nishi-Shinjuku Center Building make it well worth a spot on your co-working space short list.

Tsukuru Work leverages its affiliation with Kinko’s Japan to offer more printing services than any co-working space on this list. This is especially useful for those who may need large-format printing (e.g. posters) on the go.

Rampart

  • – Website: https://rampart-akiba.jp/
  • – Location: Akihabara
  • – Membership requirement: None
  • – Company address registration: Unavailable
  • – Perks: free soft drinks and hot coffee; discounts for following Rampart social media accounts

Rampart has something for everyone: great rates for drop in co-working as well as services for those hoping to establish a permanent base of operations (address registration and mail reception).

However, considering the cost of the monthly payment plans, packed floorplan, and minimal space for private meetings, Rampart is best suited for drop-in use. Rampart represents drop-in co-working in its purest form. Thanks to its registration-free system, you can show up, grab a cup of coffee, and start working on your next project within mere minutes of arrival.

For sole proprietors and entrepreneurs

The following locations are great for those committed to doing business in Japan but are still just getting started with limited resources. If you are planning to grow your company in Japan, having a professional business address is a great way to build credibility and protect your privacy while doing so.

Fabbit

  • – Website: https://fabbit.co.jp
  • – Locations: Multiple locations throughout Japan and the world (see website for details)
  • – Membership requirement: Yes (free)
  • – Company address registration: Available
  • – Perks: free soft drinks and hot coffee (varies by location)
Fabbit Kyobashi, located on the second floor of the Central Building, is conveniently located five minutes from Tokyo Station.

With locations all over Tokyo (and the world) Fabbit is easily one of the most convenient options on this list. Each location has a different feel and fee structure, so take your time exploring the website to discover which location best matches your needs.

If you are looking for what is quite possibly the most affordable place to register your business address in Tokyo, look no further than the Kyobashi location. If you’d prefer to share space with some of the city’s more prominent startups, consider the Otemachi space, which frequently holds networking events.

Although Fabbit offices typically feature drop-in co-working, a full-day pass is the only option. With that in mind, Fabbit works best for extended working sessions or paying the monthly fee for unlimited access.

Servcorp

  • – Website: https://www.servcorp.co.jp/en/rental-offices/locations/tokyo/
  • – Locations: Multiple locations throughout Japan and the world (see website for details)
  • – Membership requirement: Yes
  • – Company address registration: Available
  • – Perks: free hot coffee and tea (varies by location); networking events

When you are ready to take your business to the next level, Servcorp is the most convenient and affordable way to do so. For entrepreneurs and startups, Servcorp’s virtual office and co-working plans are most attractive. These plans include address registration in prestigious locations and customizable add-ons such as mail and telephone reception.

Perhaps Servcorp’s most appealing feature is its global network. Joining one Servcorp office grants you access to any Servcorp office around the globe. This is perfect for entrepreneurs who travel and work in multiple countries.

Servcorp tends to be popular among those who are running traditional businesses, so if you are looking to break into the startup or tech scene, you may want to save up until you can afford a WeWork membership instead. However, most aspiring entrepreneurs will be hard pressed to find an office that offers more value than Servcorp.

A few final things to keep in mind

Each brand has wildly different pricing options. For places offering drop-in co-working, expect to pay anywhere from 250 yen to 1,000 yen per hour, with discounts for purchasing two-hour or all-day passes. For details, it’s best to visit the homepage for each co-working space that interests you (don’t hesitate to use Google Translate when needed).

This article only reflects my experience as of spring 2019. Tokyo is experiencing a boom in co-working spaces and more and more are popping up all the time. I’m confident that 2020 and beyond will bring a wealth of new affordable and convenient co-working options. If you have suggestions for co-working spaces that we should consider for future articles, please share your experience in the comments section or get in touch with us via our social media accounts.

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AUTHOR

Anthony

Anthony

Writer / Translator

Originally from Riverside, California, I've been living, working, and writing in Japan since 2009. Japan has become my second home, and I'm especially fond of Shinjuku, Tokyo. That being said, I also love getting out into the countryside and exploring the entire country. Through Tadaima Japan, I hope to share the wonders of Japan with a wider, international audience. Check out my articles if you enjoy exploring on foot, convenient cafes, and affordable dining.