Instant Transmission (瞬間移動 Shunkan Idō, lit. "Instantaneous Movement", also translated as "Teleportation") is a technique for traveling long distances instantly. It was taught to Goku when he was on Planet Yardrat after his deadly battle with Frieza.
This action is usually accompanied by the user placing his index and middle fingers on his forehead to help him concentrate, though if extra time is taken the technique can be performed without this aid. When used by Yardrats and those who gained the technique thanks to them, it is achieved via Spirit Control.
Instant Transmission allows the user and anyone that is in physical contact with them to instantly travel great distances (from meters to light-years, between the living world and Other World, or even travel outside time itself) just by concentrating on a particular individual's ki signature, and transmitting or feeling that being's location. The user can rematerialise anywhere within a short range of their target.
In the movies, the process is further elaborated on as entering a Teleportation Zone to transmit, where a user uses the zone as a waypoint to lock onto the desired ki signature and exit at that destination. Goku describes it as more complicated than traditional teleportation, as it consists of merging one's energy and demolecularizing their atoms in order to enter and transport oneself through the Teleportation Zone to begin with, then reassembling in the area where the locked-on signature resides.
Since Instant Transmission requires a ki signature to lock onto (whereas Kai Kai does not), the technique's success is dependent on the user's ability to detect the desired signature. During the Kid Buu Saga, this complication arose when Goku found himself unable to teleport to New Namek since their ki signatures were too far away for him to reach. In addition, there is a limit to the amount of people Goku can teleport at one time, as in Dragon Ball GT he was unable to transport the entire world's population in a single trip.
The technique has many practical uses throughout the series. The Yardrats taught Instant Transmission to Goku during his time on their planet. Goku intended to use the technique to get to Earth before the rebuilt Frieza could harm anyone (Dragon Ball Z: Dokkan Battle depicts Future Goku accomplishing this goal), but since Future Trunks had already come to finish Frieza and his father off, Goku deemed it unnecessary, deciding to demonstrate it after his return to the fellow Z Fighters instead by warping to Kame House and stealing Master Roshi's sunglasses in under a few seconds.
Throughout the rest of the series, Goku uses the technique often to travel around the universe. The technique is also frequently used by Goku in battle. The move allows him to escape from attacks which would be otherwise too fast to dodge, and can be used repeatedly at short ranges to disorient opponents who cannot follow his ki signature as he teleports around them. He can also use two of his signature attacks in conjunction with this technique; the Instant Kamehameha and the Instant Spirit Bomb. The ability is fairly rare, allowing Goku to gain the element of surprise. Even beings with great knowledge of techniques or lots of experience, such as the Galactic Patrol, Babidi, Moro and Beerus, are either totally unfamiliar with the technique or do not know how to use it. Meta-Cooler, however, is aware of this technique (at least in the Funimation dub), and claims it to be a favorite of his, catching Goku off-guard in their battle by outclassing Goku's own usage of it.
In Dragon Ball Z: Broly - The Legendary Super Saiyan, Goku uses it to teleport to King Kai's Planet in Other World after being informed of the threat posed by the Legendary Super Saiyan. After a meal, Goku uses Instant Transmission to lock in on the mysterious Legendary Super Saiyan's ki signature which is shown to linger on planets devastated by the Legendary Super Saiyan, though he is able to use Instant Transmission to follow this lingering ki signature all the way back to New Planet Vegeta where Broly is located, accidentally getting punched in the face by Krillin when he teleported near him while Krillin was trying to scare off the New Saiyan Empire soldiers from abusing their slaves. Goku later uses it to escape New Planet Vegeta as it is destroyed by Comet Camori with Gohan, Piccolo, Vegeta, and Future Trunks by teleporting to the Capsule Corporation spaceship Piccolo had used to travel to New Planet Vegeta, which he gave to Krillin, Oolong, Master Roshi, and the New Saiyan Empire slaves so they could escape, which causes the ship to comically become cramped due to the additional escapees from New Planet Vegeta. Goku later uses it to teleport home with Gohan, appearing outside of his home where Chi-Chi was doing laundry, who angrily confronts Goku for leaving her behind.
Whilst the technique itself allows for travel that is effectively instantaneous, performing the technique itself does require time to concentrate and/or to place the fingers on the user's forehead to aid concentration. Goku trains the technique to requires much less concentration later in the series, as shown in his fight with Top. During his battle with Dyspo, however, Super Saiyan God Goku was unable to use Instant Transmission, as Dyspo's sheer speed eclipsed even the instantaneous technique. After wishing to become the strongest warrior in the universe, Granolah gained several new abilities, including a technique for instantaneous movement which Goku comments on as being faster to use than Instant Transmission.
In addition to the technique's rarity, its unique usefulness both in combat and in tactical situations has resulted in several villainous characters with the ability to learn techniques on sight gaining the technique from Goku after seeing him perform it, and then using it to follow after the heroes or otherwise become more dangerous. After blowing up King Kai's planet and killing everyone on it, the strengthened Cell gained the ability to use Instant Transmission; the method by which he does this is not clear. In the Funimation dub he states that he learned it from 'Goku's cells' during the explosion. He does not appear to have learned it by observation after seeing Goku perform it to save Tien and again during the Cell Games, so this incident seems to be down to a unique application of Cell's regenerative powers combined with his genetic heritage and Goku's cells. He then uses it after regenerating to return to Earth. Majin Buu also gains the ability to use both Instant Transmission and the more powerful Kai Kai after seeing Goku and Supreme Kai perform them only once. Whilst Fat Buu presumably learned the technique on sight after Goku used it to escape from him and Babidi after their fight, he does not use it at the time, as he does not appear to be capable of sensing Ki. After his transformation into Super Buu, he does gain this ability, but does not use the technique until he becomes Kid Buu, using it and Kai Kai to travel to several planets and destroy them in search of Goku and Vegeta, as well as to follow their energies to the Sacred World of the Kais.
In Dragon Ball FighterZ, Android 21, who has the genetic data of Buu as an experimental android, gains the ability to use Instant Transmission from Goku after seeing him use it only once to escape from her. She later uses it to follow the heroes to the Sacred World of the Kais to attempt to turn them into snacks and consume them. Goku was even banking on her ability to learn and instantly master the technique to follow their energies to a far away planet beyond even the Other World.
In Dragon Ball: The Return of Son Goku and Friends!, Goku uses the Instant Transmission to warp everybody to the radish field apparently without locking onto a ki signature (however it is possible that the unpicked radishes produced ki signature similar to how certain plants can detected via Ki Sense in Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot).
In Dragon Ball Super, when Goten is distracted by Goku's training and drives his tractor off a cliff, Goku uses Instant Transmission to teleport ahead of the vehicle and catch it, and he uses it when he goes to King Kai's planet.
It is revealed that Goku Black is also able to use this technique, first using it on-screen to try and locate Future Trunks' ki prior to him using the time machine, and he also uses it several times as a Super Saiyan Rosé in his fight with Super Saiyan Blue Goku, who notes he is surprised he also knows the Instant Transmission.
The technique was liberally demonstrated by Universe 2 Yardrat Jimizu during the Tournament of Power, using it against Super Saiyan Goku (before Caulifla interrupted him with a sneak attack), then using it to transport Ribrianne and Roasie to safety after Android 17 had eliminated Kakunsa, then again to briefly best Gohan. However, his overreliance on the technique was exposed by Frieza, who stepped in to effortlessly counter the Yardrat's efforts and brutalize him before punting him off the stage.
In Dragon Ball Legends during the Tournament of Time, Goku utilizes Instant Transmission to teleport to the location where Shallot first confronts the Saiyan in Red. However due to the kidnapping of Shin by the mysterious Mastermind behind the tournament, Beerus forces Goku to leave things up to his Team Beerus teammate Shallot, save for emergency situations such as when he uses it to teleport the teenage Bulma from Frieza's Spaceship to safety of the Capitol (which Team Beerus has been using as a base camp) after Shallot rescues her, or when he uses it to teleport himself and Bulma to find Shallot after he defeated Frieza and Turles using his newly acquired Super Saiyan form. Shallot's ally Zahha is shown to utilize as magic teleportation spell which he refers to as a Locational Phasing Spell which functions similar to Instant Transmission and Kai Kai, though it as a long prep time according to Zahha, though it is unclear if this is true as Zahha is later revealed to be a double agent and the true Mastermind behind the Tournament of Time. However according to observations made by New Cell the Locational Phasing Spell used by Zahha is different from Instant Transmission indicating that while both are teleportation techniques, the Locational Phasing Spell functions via different principals than Instant Transmission (presumably relating to its magical nature).
In Dragon Ball Super: Broly, Goku uses the technique to save himself and Vegeta from Broly's rampage after pinning him on Frieza to make their escape and teleport to Piccolo, who is spectating their fight from afar. After Piccolo and Goku teach Vegeta the Fusion Dance and the two Saiyans succeed in properly fusing after two failed attempts, the new warrior, Gogeta, uses Instant Transmission to lock onto Frieza's energy to return to the battlefield, then to Whis' energy to face off against Broly in his stead. After Broly returns to Vampa by Cheelai's wish to Shenron, Goku uses Instant Transmission to travel to Vampa to bring supplies to Broly and his friends as well as offer to visit and train with Broly. Before using Instant Transmission to leave, Goku introduces himself by both his birth and adoptive names (in the Funimation dub he tells Broly to call him Kakarot before teleporting back to Earth).
After completing his training on Yardrat, Vegeta quickly attempts to return to Earth and tries to have Pybara teach him the technique. Although he initially struggles, Vegeta manages to lock onto Goku's energy signature and manages to use the technique, greatly shocking Pybara. Upon arriving to Earth, Goku expresses shock that Vegeta arrived through Instant Transmission, though Vegeta says he was only able to do it once and likely wouldn't be able to do it again while showing disinterest in mastering one of Goku's signature techniques.
Pybara also reveals to Vegeta that normally Yardrats are prohibited from using Instant Transmission to travel off world, though understanding the urgency of the situation, Pybara offers to break the rule just once to teleport Vegeta to Earth but he refuses, saying that he can manage it himself.
After wishing to be the greatest warrior in Universe 7, Granolah gained an Instant Transmission-like ability even faster than Goku's. Gas also gained Instant Transmission after receiving the same wish, Goku expressing slight annoyance at the two's ability to use it so easily. Vegeta later notes that Gas isn't quite used to the technique compared to Granolah.
When Goku became a child in Dragon Ball GT, the ability to use this technique was greatly hindered to the point where he just randomly travels to places a short distance away; however, as a Super Saiyan 4, he is able to use the ability to its full potential. When he is given energy by Goten, Trunks, and Gohan during the battle against Syn Shenron, Goku is able to properly use Instant Transmission.
- Instant Kamehameha - A Kamehameha combined with Instant Transmission to force the target to take the energy wave point blank.
- Teleporting Vanishing Ball - Kid Buu uses Instant Transmission/Instant Movement to teleport before firing his Vanishing Ball.
- Instant Transmission From the Afterlife - The Instant Transmission used by Goku, allowing him to briefly break the rules of Other World and return to the world of the living for a short time.
- Instant Transmission through Time - Goku uses Instant Transmission to travel from Age 778 to Toki Toki City in Age 850 to aid the Time Patrol in combating the evil Demigra in Dragon Ball Xenoverse. Likely the result of the Supreme Kai of Time's enlisting Goku's aid in combating the Demon God. It also allows Goku (albeit with some difficulty) to travel into (and out of) the Crack of Time, to the surprise of Demigra who had been previously trapped there for centuries.
- Kai Kai - A more advanced version which does not require an energy signature. It is called Instant Transmission in several media, including Shin Budokai.
- Hyper Movement - A variation used by Cooler and Meta-Cooler where he teleports, then attacks as soon as he reappears.
- Position Shift - A variation used by Towa throws spear/staff inside a Ki Blast, switches positions between the user and opponent
- Sudden Death Beam - A counterattack variation used by Super Saiyan Rosé Goku Black in Xenoverse 2.
- Super Dragon Flash - A version of Super God Shock Flash that incorporates Instant Transmission used by Xeno Goku in Dragon Ball Heroes and World Mission.
- In the Cell Games Saga, King Kai states in filler that he knew the Instant Transmission technique and that he could have taught it to Goku if he had asked. If King Kai was not kidding, this would conflict with a previous statement he makes in the Vegeta Saga where he specifically says that he couldn't "just zap" Goku back to Earth. Also, in the Frieza Saga, King Kai stated that there was nothing he could do to help Goku escape the exploding planet Namek, whereas if he knew Instant Transmission he could have traveled to Namek and rescued Goku. However, this could be attributed to the fact that, had King Kai helped Goku in either of these instances, he would have no way to return to his planet, since no one with considerable Ki would be on it for him to lock on to, thus he would probably have to lock onto King Yemma at the Check-in Station then travel home via Snake Way.
- The Ocean dub named the technique the "Instant Translocation" technique. Translocation by definition means "a change of location." Transmit means to send something to another location. Therefore, Instant Translocation means instantly changing location, while Instant Transmission means instantly sending something to another location. Though it can be argued that the users of Instant Transmission send themselves to another location, person, or thing, Instant Translocation technically has a slightly more correct definition despite not being the official name.
- In Dragon Ball GT episode 37, "Old Kai's Last Stand", when Kibito Kai goes back to Kami's Lookout a second time (after he came back to the Sacred World of the Kais to ask where the Sacred Water was), he uses the Instant Transmission gesture of placing the first two fingers of the users' hand to their forehead and he still has his fingers to his forehead when arriving on the lookout. This later happens in Dragon Ball GT episode 40, "Piccolo's Decision", as well: when Kibito Kai comes from New Planet Plant to Earth (after this occurrence, however, Kibito Kai does not use the Instant Transmission gesture when teleporting in the rest of the episode). He also uses the gesture in the Budokai Tenkaichi series.
- The Funimation dub states that this technique allows the user to travel at the speed of light, this is not possible, as Goku has been seen using it to travel to other planets and even galaxies in a literal instant. Given that the distances from other star systems would take light entire years to travel across, this would not be possible. Even the star nearest to Sol, Proxima Centauri, would be a four-year trip away at the speed of light.
- In addition to the problem of Goku arriving at destinations more quickly than light speed, the addition of characters such as Dyspo and other stronger characters such as Jiren who have explicitly attained speeds beyond the light barrier, Instant Transmission is in practice seen as a much faster form of movement than any normal form of super speed seen in the series to the point of being truly instantaneous (so long as the time taken to concentrate is allowed; Dyspo was able to strike Goku using his Super Maximum Light Speed Mode before he was able to activate the technique by closing the distance as Goku was concentrating).
- In Dragon Ball Xenoverse, the Instant Transmission technique is revealed to even be able in allowing its user to teleport into a dimension outside of time itself. As Goku did so in order to follow Demigra into the Crack of Time. However, Goku admitted that it was very difficult to do so, and Demigra was shocked that Goku could actually enter the Crack of Time using a technique as simple as Instant Transmission, as Demigra himself had spent 75 million years trying to escape from there and probably realized that if he had known the dimension could be reached by Instant Transmission then it could also be used as a means of escape, meaning had Demigra known the technique he could have escaped much sooner.
- In Dragon Ball FighterZ, Android 21 learns how to use Instant Transmission after watching Goku perform it. Goku remarks that this is identical to what Buu did. However, Kid Buu instead copied Kai Kai, after Shin used it to save Goku and the others. In gameplay, Android 21 gains Instant Transmission after successfully landing Connoisseur Cut on Kid Buu, Captain Ginyu, Frieza, Beerus, Hit or Piccolo.
- In Dragon Ball Legends, there is a special Cover Change variant character swapping in uses Instant Transmission to teleport the character swapping out, out of harms way before returning to fight the enemy in their place. This variant can only be used once per battle. Android 21 (Good) and several versions of Goku can use this Cover Change variant.
- Daizenshuu 7, 1996
- Dragon Ball Z Collectible Card Game, 2000
- Dragon Ball Z: Legendary Super Warriors, 2002
- Dragon Ball Online, 2010
- Dragon Ball Z: Shin Budokai - Another Road, 2007
- Funimation dub
- Dragon Ball Z: Supersonic Warriors, 2004
- Dragon Ball Z: Sagas, 2005
- Dragon Ball Xenoverse, 2015
- Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2, 2016
- Dragon Ball FighterZ, 2018
- Dragon Ball Heroes, 2010
- Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot, 2020
- Dragon Ball GT episode 40, Piccolo's Decision
- Dragon Ball Super Chapter 72, Saiyans and Cerealian, Page 18
- Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods, 2013
- Dragon Ball Super episode 1, A Peacetime Reward Who Gets the 100,000,000 Zeni?!