Home Page Forums General Discussion WHY IS JAPAN NOT A CASHLESS SOCIETY?

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  • #5639

    virl7887
    Participant

    It is a bit of a nagging question to me why Japan, notwithstanding its leaps and advances in science and technology remain to this date predominately cash based. Yes, it is part of  its quintessential charm, the harmonious blend of the old and the new captured perfectly in its culture and people. It is beautiful!

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  • #5640

    accessible-japan
    Administrator

    For a long time this has been true… but in the past year QR code payments (PayPay, Rakuten Pay, Line Pay) have become very popular.  Also, many places accept AliPay from China as well.  However, other foreigners must use cash or credit cards.

    The government is really pushing this before the Olympics and Paralympics, so it may be another situation where things change very slowly, and then change completely over night!

  • #5641

    virl7887
    Member

    Japan certainly has its own unique way of doing its thing, and even outdoing its own self at times. Truly amazing,  this country, its culture and people.

  • #5642

    virl7887
    Member

    In practical terms, at the moment, to what degree of dependence on their credit/debit cards must foreign travelers be, especially if it is their first time?

    The more known and visited prefectures of Tokyo and Osaka, can one freely move around  almost “cash-less”?

  • #5643

    accessible-japan
    Administrator

    Unfortunately, no.  While there are a growing number of cashless options, they tend to be fragmented.  For example, PayPay can be used at many convenience stores and drug stores, but not on the train.  Also, most family run restaurants have fewer options.  

    Credit cards can be used often, but again, not certain.

    But most post office ATMs allow withdrawing from a foreign bank account. 

  • #5644

    virl7887
    Member

    Thanks. What about the vending machines, which are dispersed all around, Are there already vending machines fitted/adapted for cards instead of cash?


  • #5647

    accessible-japan
    Administrator

    Some can be used with IC cards (Suica, Pasmo, etc) but none with credit cards.  And it all depends on the machine – one may take only cash and Suica, another may take only cash and Pasmo… So, cash is the only constant.

  • #5648

    virl7887
    Member

    Thanks Josh. Advice to all travelers particularly the newbies…keep your cash handy! I also will come my travel :)

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