10 English-Friendly Meetups in Tokyo

There are plenty of meetups and events in Tokyo that cater specifically to expats and English-speaking locals. They offer an excellent opportunity to meet like-minded individuals and expand your social circle—not to mention making life in Japan that much easier! So let’s look at some of the best English-friendly meetups in Tokyo right now.

Food Meetups

These are a great way for foreigners to make friends and, of course, eat delicious food! Most meetups take place in people’s homes, making them an excellent way to make friends outside of the city center. As with any social event, it pays to do a bit of research before attending your first food meetup. Check out the group’s website, Facebook page, and Instagram profile to get a feel for the meetup’s vibe. The best groups are inclusive, friendly, and welcoming to all food lovers.

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Vegan Friendly

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Photo: Tokyo Vegan

The Tokyo Vegan meetup group is intended to connect vegans and vegan-interested people in the Tokyo area. The group is run by volunteers who aim to grow the vegan community in Japan and worldwide. They host meetups almost every week and are open to anyone interested in meeting other vegans. This meetup strives to provide a welcoming environment for everyone to learn about veganism and enjoy delicious food together. For more information, please check out their website for vegan shops, books, Facebook groups, and recipes.

International Flair

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The Italian Wine and Food meetup is a monthly event for people who are passionate about Italian food, wine, and culture. Whether you’re a foodie, wine connoisseur, or both, you’ll meet other like-minded people at each event to talk about the best that Italy has to offer. There’s always something to enjoy. Some of the past events include making Italian gelato, ravioli pasta, Italian bread, and pizza. They also host other events such as wine seminars and Christmas parties. RSVPs and payments are required to attend the meetups. The events cost about ¥2,000–¥4,000.

Language Exchange Meetups

These gatherings offer a great way to learn Japanese or improve your speaking abilities. The idea is simple: you attend a meetup with a group of people who are at the same level as you (beginner, intermediate or advanced). You then take turns speaking your native language, with the aim of helping each other learn.

Welcome Tokyo

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Photo: Welcome Tokyo

The best language exchange meetups in Tokyo have a wide range of events and activities, and the Welcome Tokyo meetup is one of them. This meetup group hosts language exchange events every day of the week. They also have a full events calendar for a wide range of activities, such as kickboxing experiences, happy Sunday drinks, karaoke, Japanese sweets making, Japanese calligraphy, and art and pizza night. The Welcome Tokyo meetup has 17 organizers, which is a sign that their events tend to be better run and are more established. Their meetups occur in cafes and pubs in Tokyo, and some events are held online.

English Only Café

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Photo: English Only Café

This meetup group is the only “study abroad cafe” in Tokyo. The group hosts events and informational sessions about international exchange and English learning. They also have language exchange events for people interested in learning Japanese, Korean, Chinese, and Spanish. The English Only Café is a great place to learn a language or meet new people. Other events in their calendar include board games, sushi parties, travel talk, programming, cherry blossom viewing, and drawing.

Fitness Meetups

Japan is a great country for fitness enthusiasts and offers a huge range of activities. From hiking, surfing, and skateboarding to indoor sports such as rock climbing, yoga, Pilates, and squash, there are plenty of different ways to stay active in Tokyo.

Shape Up

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The largest international fitness group in Tokyo, SOGO Fitness is aimed at people who are passionate about health and fitness. It offers many activities, including outdoor bootcamps, indoor bouldering, yoga, swimming, and running. All these activities cater to different fitness levels, so there is something for everyone. Within the SOGO group are sub-communities for climbing and hiking, Tokyo Spartans, healthy cooking club, body and mind, and martial arts. SOGO Fitness meetups have a full calendar of events and excursions, making it easy to find something that matches your interests and schedule.

Kicking Around

Futsal Tokyo meetup
Photo: Futsal Tokyo

Futsal Tokyo is a popular meetup with more than six thousand members. The meetup is made up of expats, tourists, and locals. Men and women of all skill levels are welcome. If you want to play football, meet people, and become a part of a growing community, then Futsal Tokyo might be what you’ve been looking for! Although most games are played in English, there are also many Japanese speakers. The meetup has two levels. The standard level is for advanced and competitive football players, and the mixed level is for those who want to play football for fun. It’s suitable for beginners.

Networking Meetups

Japan is famous for its strong business culture, and networking events are a great way to find new connections and make the most of your time in Tokyo. These events usually take place in company or coworking spaces or conference centers. They are often aimed at people from specific industries or professions.

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State of the Art

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Photo: Tokyo Digital Marketers

Tokyo Digital Marketers is an English and Japanese meetup for all digital marketers in Tokyo—it covers everything from content marketing, PPC, and SEO to web design, project managing, and running small businesses. It usually has events once a month, and the admission fee is about ¥1,000. The monthly event includes a presentation, and time for networking, followed by drinks at a nearby bar. The atmosphere is casual and easygoing, and the presentations are insightful and informative. Make sure you bring your business card.

Talent in the City

Photo: Creative Tokyo

Creative Tokyo is an international meetup created for graphic designers, UX and UI designers, and anyone interested in the design world. It’s a hub for creatives to meet with other like-minded people who share the same passion for design, share ideas, gain resources to advance in their careers, and possibly collaborate on projects. Some of the upcoming meetup events are “design product management,” “big problems get ideas,” and “creative bonenkai.” Creative Tokyo is one of a few English-friendly design meetups in Japan.

Art Gallery Visits

If art and culture are more your thing, why not join an art meetup? These events are often organized by art lovers and creatives. They can be a great way to discuss current exhibitions and upcoming exhibitions. Most art gallery visits are held on weekends, making them easy to fit into your social calendar.

Art Meets Culture

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Photo: Tokyo Art ± Culture Meetup

Joining Tokyo Art ± Culture Meetup is an excellent opportunity to socialize, learn about new things and make connections. From visiting museums, checking out art exhibitions, and watching art shows, it offers many ways to enjoy art. This meetup also focuses on learning about different cultures and practices through art events that can help deepen your understanding of a particular topic. When it comes to art and culture, there’s always something new to discover!

Art in All Its Diversity

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Photo: Tokyo Art Lovers Meetup

Tokyo Art Lovers Meetup is a community of more than three thousand art lovers in the city. The main goal of this meetup is to provide a platform where people can share their passion for art. Some of the events include film screenings, photography exhibits, gallery openings, and musical performances. Tokyo Art Lovers embraces all art forms, including graphic design, video art, conceptual art, painting, photography, and performance art.


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