Coming to Japan? Learn about Japanese Currency and Taxes before your trip!
Before visiting Japan, let’s learn about Japanese currency, taxes, tax exemption and currency exchange.
Here, we will discuss about this thoroughly. This is a must-read article for those who are planning a trip to Japan!
|1. What are the different denominations of Japanese Yen?||2. What about consumption tax?|
|3. Can you apply for tax exemption?||4. Do you need to tip?|
|5. Where can you exchange money?|
Yen (￥) is the unit of Japanese currency.
Coins are available in 1 yen, 5 yen, 10 yen, 50 yen, 100 yen, 500 yen denominations
Bank notes are available in 1000 yen, 2000 yen, 5000 yen, 10,000 yen denominations.
The 5 yen and 50 yen coin, which have a hole in the middle, are considered rare by some foreigners and brought back home as souvenirs. It is recommended that you use 5 yen coins as monetary offerings when visiting a shrine or a temple. In Japanese, 5 yen, pronounced as Goen, is a homonym with a word that means “to have ties between things or people” (En is a Buddhist term meaning connection). That’s why it’s said to be lucky to use 5 yen coins as monetary offerings.
Among the 4 types of paper bills that are circulated in Japan, the circulation amount of 2000 yen bills is extremely low, so you may not be able to see one. Using the most expensive 10,000 yen bill while shopping may be troublesome in case the price is low, so do prepare yourself with smaller amounts of money beforehand especially in small shops.
The Japanese consumption tax is set at 8% and is estimated to rise up to 10% in the near future. The price labeling in shops differs depending on the shop’s policy; sometimes, the price will be labeled as “100 yen (tax not included)”, or “108 yen (tax included)”. If you don’t know whether the tax is included or not, please ask the staff.
At Japan, tax exemption procedures can be done at department stores, large shopping malls, electronics retail stores and drug stores such as Matsumoto Kiyoshi, some shops of UNIQLO, or Ekinaka (shops that are located inside the train station) shops at Tokyo station. Considering the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, you may receive tax exemption in some boutiques, smaller private shops especially in tourist spots that aim to attract foreign tourists coming to Japan. Tax exemption is applicable to products such as consumer electronics, accessories, watches, clothes, miscellaneous goods, food, medical and pharmaceutical products, cosmetics, and so on. For other goods, you can receive tax exemptions if your total purchase amount is over 10,001 yen (tax not included) per day at one shop. If the purchased goods are consumables, the total purchase amount per day at one shop must be over 5,001 yen and up to 500,000 yen (tax not included).
At Japan, we don’t have the custom to tip like other countries. Even if you receive service at taxis, hotels, or restaurants, there’s no need to tip.
You can exchange money at every airport in Japan, or at the teller’s at any large banks such as Tokyo Mitsubushi UFJ Bank or Mitsui Sumitomo Bank. On weekdays, banks are open from 9 am to 3 pm, and are closed on weekends. You can also exchange money at any post office in Japan. Most post offices are open from 9 am to 4 pm on weekdays.
Exchanging money is also possible at foreign currency exchange places such as Travelex. Business hours differ from shops, so for further reference visit their homepage listed down below.
For banks that are tied up with foreign banks, you can also withdraw Japanese yen directly with your cash card/ATM card! (For more information, check with your bank)
For a list of Travelex shops, check Travelex here
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