Acceptance In Japan

Discussion in 'American Express Rewards' started by TheCityLane, Apr 23, 2014.

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  1. TheCityLane

    TheCityLane Intern

    Nov 7, 2013
    #1 TheCityLane, Apr 23, 2014
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2014
    I've just returned from 2 weeks in Japan and have to say that I was very impressed with the acceptance of AMEX over there (Osaka, Kyoto, Tokyo).

    Before traveling I was told that credit card acceptance was quite low in Japan but to be honest I found it to be pretty much the same as in Australia, the difference being is that everywhere that accepted credit cards accepted all credit cards with no surcharge. It's a real "all or nothing" approach and I didn't have to reach for the Visa card once. Very handy for those with AMEX. The exchange rate was very competitive too.

    Great way to accumulate a bunch of double points on foreign spend.

  2. Wow that's very different to things I've read over the years. Goes to show, don't leave home without it
  3. flyingfan

    flyingfan Active Member

    Jun 5, 2010
    I agree, I read in Lonely Planet how Japan is a cash society and that I was prepared for low acceptance of my plastic so geared for stumping up for the cold hard type even at the big Michelin-starred restaurants I wanted to try. But acceptance was a lot better than I'd been led to believe. In Australia I always check for a 'minimum $x transaction, MasterCard/Visa only'-type sign - I wouldn't have been able to read its Japanese equivalent but fortunately didn't have to because most of the places that took cards took Amex, with no minimum spend that I ran into.
  4. drron

    drron Enthusiast

    Jul 4, 2002
    Sunshine Coast
    Most of the tourist places such as hotels and department stores accept credit cards.Gradually more restaurants but we certainly have been to a few that dont including some of the Iron Chefs.
  5. TheCityLane

    TheCityLane Intern

    Nov 7, 2013
    We did encounter a few restaurants and bars that one would assume accepted credit cards that were cash only, including a Michelin starred restaurant but conversely a few of the market stalls and small "mom and pop" shops that we assumed would be cash only did accept credit cards.

    Didn't encounter a minimum spend either. A lot of 100-200 yen (AUD$1-$2) convenience store purchases on the credit card!

    They must have a PayPass type thing too as for most small transactions I didn't have to enter my PIN or sign. Interestingly a lot of places required a PIN and signature but never checked the signature, generally handing back the card before I'd signed.
  6. Your signature prolly looked like this to them anyway:)

    doctor alphabet cartoon.jpg

    Attached Files:

  7. BAM1748

    BAM1748 Senior Member

    Jul 22, 2008
    This thread tells me we in the great land of Oz are being ripped off, shops, taxis, hotels......

    What a surprise.

  8. marki

    marki Established Member

    Feb 11, 2010
    On this World- Mostly
    I know sic! very surprising ....not... we get ripped of in a lot of places but not everywhere. We will soon loose our 1000AUD allowance that kept us ahead of the curve ball. At least it kept Australia post alive and kicking. I still won't buy at "Hardly Normal" if it's overpriced.....will still buy it overseas(my next OS journey) and import it that way.... or some other way but I am still working on that....

  9. Simo

    Simo Established Member

    May 22, 2011
    Sunny Coast
  10. Don't worry - the Yanks are ripped off but they know about it because their corporate cops do something about it.

    Compare an article headed Why ASIC doesn't do anything to:

    [FONT=&quot]Merchants with a claim to the $7.25 billion settlement over Visa Inc. and MasterCard Inc.'s alleged plot to fix credit card swipe fees continued their efforts to root out allegedly dicey claim-recovery services, urging a New York federal judge on Monday to ban the servicer for allegedly duping class members seeking a payout[/FONT]
  11. mitwg

    mitwg Member

    Nov 11, 2012
    Flight Map:
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    I actually noticed this shift in NE Asian countries recently. They are really trying to accommodate CC payments.

    Japan for one but Korea (home for me) as well. I don't frequent Korea as it is not really a business destination for me but I had a conference in Singapore last year so I quickly hopped over to ICN to visit my family that I hadn't seen for a few years. Last time I was there (few years back), I remember everything being cash but now, people look at you weirdly if you actually use cash.

    I'm ashamed to say this, but because I don't know how to cook, I lived off delivery food pretty much the whole time I was there and every single time, the delivery personnel would have a remote credit card machine that they'd bring with the food so I can pay with a CC. In fact, the Korean version of my CC (Amex Plat charge) actually had a feature where you could use the CC as your travel card, much like the Opal concept from Sydney and you could use this everywhere, not just on transports but on vending machines, convenience stores, fuel, taxis etc.
  12. Amex (in which Warren Buffett has whopping 150m shares) reported growth in the latest Annual report but I didn't see any break ups by country.

    Maybe they should ask Karl Malden to promote the fact they're bigger than we think, especially with the growth of travel to Japan and asia on Jetstar etc.

    At least in this old promo they told us they joined up 26,000 more shops to prove they really were worth having in the wallet along with a Visa or Mcard


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