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Best way(s) to take money to Japan

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Best way(s) to take money to Japan 2013/3/16 00:21
So, in 3 weeks, me my dad and brother are flying out to Osaka for over 2 weeks!

We have some plans to visit Kyoto, Nara etc

What would be the best way to take money?
this is the FIRST time all 3 of us will be going outside the UK aha!

My dad keeps going on about these travel cards that you top-up and use abroad. 0.o

I am obviously taking some cash, and was thinking of using my Visa Bank + Credit card over there if it's possible?
(I done some research and apparently i can use them at Post-Offices)


Anybody have any ideas on what the optimal way to take my money to japan (and convert it into Yen ofc)

thanks!

by jordanwalker94  

Re: Best way(s) to take money to Japan 2013/3/16 16:49
Use credit card to pay for hotels and bigger expenses.
Use bank card (debit card) to get cash at Post office ATM or 7-11 ATM.
Do your cards have chips?

Be sure to tell your bank and credit card company that you will be in Japan, for how long, and roughly where.

You could buy 10 000 or 20 000 yen at home, especially if there are bureau de change and Japanese tourists go there regularly.

Be aware of the time difference. When you try to withdraw money in Japan make sure it is day time back home, not middle of the night when they may do maintenance of the bank machines.

by Monkey see (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Best way(s) to take money to Japan 2013/3/16 17:18
I have been to Japan from the UK twice now. Both times I took mostly cash for the trip as this was the easiest way. You will find that Japan is mostly a cash society and it is relatively safe to carry cash with you as long as you are reasonably cautious. I was staying in hostels that didn't take credit cards so that wasn't an option.
It is fairly easy to withdraw money on a UK debit card from City bank, some post offices and 7-11 shops. The machines can operate in English. It depends on the card you have. Mine was a HSBC visa debit. You just need to plan ahead a bit so you know where you can go to withdraw money and won't run out in the middle of nowhere. Also, be aware that there is usually a small charge for withdrawing cash so don't keep getting small amounts out, it is best to get what you need in one go.
by Kikuya (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Best way(s) to take money to Japan 2013/3/16 17:20
PS- I looked into those travel cards that you top up but I think you will find them quite hard to use in Japan (others may have more info about this). Personally I think it will be easier to use your visa debit/ credit card.
by Kikuya (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Best way(s) to take money to Japan 2013/3/17 00:16
For me, the best way is to bring some currency and change it at the airport. This amount serves me as pocket money. Then I pay a maximum of bills (purchase in stores, restaurants, hotels) by Visa or Mastercard. If I still need more pocket money, I go to the post office or in combini 7-11to catch it.
I still have enough care to have enough cash on me before entering a restaurant ... Sometimes the card system does not work.
www.soleilrouge.org
by fuchan29 (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Best way(s) to take money to Japan 2013/3/17 01:01
I go to my bank and get some money exchanged about two weeks before I leave. I like to keep about three days worth of funds for hotel and food in my wallet.

I then depend on a Mastercard and Visa for large purchases, and visit the Postal ATM every few days to top up my wallet.

by ebaychucky311 rate this post as useful

Re: Best way(s) to take money to Japan 2013/3/17 05:04
Forget travel cards, never seen one that has been of any value and there usually only euro and dollars anyway. and forget credit cards the fees are not worth it. Take 50-100,000 yen in cash preferably from a currency exchange specalist then use you debit cards for cash top ups. There are some very good ones in london that offer near accurate echange rates.

citibank and post offices are best for atm's but beware of opening times and your withdrawl limits.

You can tell your bank your going abroad, but in my experience going to japan they rarely take any notice and have blocked my card almost every trip i've made...so make sure you have a contact number to call.

by pas7680 (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Best way(s) to take money to Japan 2013/3/17 05:15
Never ever exchange at airports or touristy spots (they give your much worse rates)

Do the currency exchange back home where you have a choice, look around for the best rates and compare. I'd take as much cash with you to save the hassle. Use card for bigger purchases.

by reprazent rate this post as useful

Re: Best way(s) to take money to Japan 2013/3/17 05:41
Traveler Checks are what I used for my trips in the past. I live in the US, so my bank charged 2% for the service. When you get to Narita, they give you a 2 yen/dollar rate better than cash, since they're essentially electronically transfered in Japan (they don't have to man-handle bills). And the rate for the US Dollar was about 1 yen off the official rate, so I can't say it was a bad thing. I would never tell anyone NOT to cash TCs at the airport. Their rate is about as good as you'll find downtown.
by John B digs Japan rate this post as useful

Re: Best way(s) to take money to Japan 2013/3/17 12:54
Thanks for the answers guys, I'm gonna go into town, see if i can find somewhere that exchanges for Yen and take about £100 worth as cash, and use my Bank card as a cash top-up. Taking Credit card too, (safety reasons, incase i lose my money/get it stolen)

If nowhere in Town does Yen, i'll get it in London when i'm on the way to the airport!

And will stay away from airport exchange as advised


THANKS GUYS!

by jordanwalker94 (guest) rate this post as useful

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