Japanese currency is Yen (JPY or symbol ¥), valued at around $90 US and the available notes are in denominations of ¥1,000, ¥2,000 (rare), ¥5,000 and ¥10,000. Coins are of ¥1, ¥5, ¥10, ¥50, ¥100 and ¥500.
Cash is very widely used in Japan and carrying large amounts of it is common. Cash can be obtained at banks, post offices, discount ticket shops, some travel agents, some large hotels or big department stores; rates are usually very good for US dollars and euros, much worse for other currencies, but Canadian, Australian, New Zealand and Singapore dollars as well as British pounds can be also exchanged. Exchanging larger amounts (above $1,000 US) requires photo identification that includes name, date of birth and address.
Travelers checks can be easily exchanged for Yen at banks, post offices, discount ticket shops, some travel agents, some large hotels or big department stores. Recommended currency is US dollar or Yen.
Credit cards are not widely acceptable in Japan. Some bigger hotels or restaurants as well as department stores may, but in general travelers should not rely on paying for purchases by credit card in Japan. Places that do accept credit cards sometimes impose a surcharge or a purchase limit. The most popular cards are Visa, JCB, MasterCard, Amex and Diners Club.
ATMs are very common in Japan, but, unfortunately for the foreigners, most of them only accept cards issued by Japanese banks. Notable exceptions to that rule are ATMs found on post offices that accept Visa, Plus, MasterCard, Maestro, Cirrus American Express and Diners Club cards as well as ATMs at 7-Eleven stores that accept Visa, American Express, JCB and other cards with Plus logo. ATMs accepting foreign cards can also be found on major international airports (Norita, Kansai) and at Citibank machines.
Many ATMs in Japan are also closed at night, on Sundays, or operate only during normal banking ours, Mon-Fri between 9:00am and 3:00pm.
Tipping is uncommon in Japan. Tips are generally not expected and giving someone money may be considered inappropriate.
A 5 % tax is normally included in all prices. Some top-end hotels or restaurants apply additional "service charge", that varies from 10% to 15%.
Current Japanese Yen Rates
For other currencies or conversion amounts go to Currency Converter