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Currency information

Code JPY
Symbol ¥
Unholed - ¥1, ¥10, ¥100, ¥500; Holed - ¥5, ¥50
¥1000, ¥2000, ¥5000 and ¥10,000

Welcome to Japan!

Be bamboozled by a country that surpasses imagination. Sci-fi is the norm in Japan, yet it still remains deeply rooted in its deep and humble traditions. While neon rainbow cities host karaoke, charming sunset towns hold quiet tea ceremonies. And then there’s the stunning landscapes that glide past in super-fast trains. It’s just too much goodness.

ATM access

5/5 stars – Thankfully, ‘convenience store’ takes on a whole new meaning in Japan, with thousands of stores all over the country providing ATMs. This means you’ll go further with your travel money.


It’s not customary to tip, just be polite instead

Phone and Internet access

When Godzilla isn’t breaking things, it’s excellent

Daily cost

You’ll always find cheap and convenient food and transport, if you keep coins handy.

Coffee:  NZ$5.05 (regular cappuccino)
Water:  NZ$1.30 (500mL bottle)
Beer:  NZ$6.25 (draft beer)
Food:  NZ$8.70 (bowl of ramen)
Taxi:  NZ$47.30 (on a busy day)
Big Mac:  NZ$4.60 (known as biggu makku)

Daily budget

Budget:  Around NZ$90/day (2x cheap meals, supermarket   snacks, train ticket and entry to a baseball game)
Moderate:  Around NZ$165/day (2x cheap meals, supermarket   snacks and traditional Japanese costume hire)
Luxury:  Around NZ$220/day (2x restaurant meals,   supermarket snacks and a Robot Cabaret Show)

Safety rating

5/5 stars - You’ll always feel safe in Japan, because, well it is safe. Just keep your belongings away from cheeky forest monkeys and stick to the neon slick streets in the cities, rather than dark alleyways.

Travel Money Trivia

Don’t be  a square
The word Yen directly translates to ‘a round object’.
Paperclip coin
The coin for 1 yen weighs 1 gram,  around the weight  of a paperclip.
Donut yen
Both the 5 and 50 yen coin have a hole in their centre.
On emperor’s time
Unlike our coins, Yen display the year of the current emperor’s reign.
Hey big trader
The Japanese yen is the third highest traded currency (after USD and  the euro).

Let's talk money

To keep your costs in Japan cheap and efficient, you’ll want to keep plenty of cash in hand for your day-to-day purchases. In fact, coins are a gateway to so many necessities, with some restaurants requiring tickets for meals (purchased at coin vending machines).

  • Tip by saying: “arigatou gozaimasu”
  • Tips are often  refused anyway
  • Save with a Japan  Rail Pass
  • Choose a hotel with  free Wi-Fi
  • Be smart with ATM fees
  • Convenience store  = cheap lunches!
  • Spend leftover yen at  the airport
  • Most vending machines require coins, so keep yo’ yen handy for burgers and quirky knick-knacks

Must do

Cherry blossom chasing
When spring awakens Japan’s flowers, you’ll see the cherry blossom. Plan out when they bloom in each city and walk down aisles of silky pink.
Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine 
Walk through the rows of mesmerising sunset-orange torii gates. There are 10,000 all up, so you’ll have time to enjoy it.
Robot restaurant 
Sit back with a beer and watch robot monsters dance, fight and inspire with this profound cabaret show in Tokyo.
Nara, my deer 
Visit the quiet city of Nara to discover the insanely cute (and bizarrely polite) deer of Nara Park.
Late night Gion
Kyoto is full of places to enjoy, like Gion. This famous geisha district is full of traditional buildings and lantern-lit paths that are truly enchanting.

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Travel Money NZ has sought to ensure that the information is true and correct at the time of publication. Prices, details and services are subject to change without notice, and Travel Money NZ accepts no responsibility or liability for any such changes, including any loss resulting from any action taken or reliance made by you on any information provided. Daily Cost: All prices are approximations. Your costs may differ depending on where you go, where you shop, and their individual factors. Daily Budget: Costs are estimated per person and do not include accommodation.