Japan has one of the lowest crime rates in the world and is generally a safe place to carry cash. Credit and debit cards are widely accepted at stores, restaurants and hotels in most major cities, but retailers in some smaller regional areas may only accept cash.
If you wish to use travellers’ cheques, they are accepted by leading banks, hotels, ryokan and stores in major cities.
Japan Post ATMs (JP Bank) and Seven-Eleven Convenience Store ATMs accept most international credit and debit cards for cash withdrawal, however international withdrawal fees apply.
Shinsei Bank and Citibank ATMs also accept international cards.
Natural disasters: Download and install ‘Safety Tips’, a push-notification information natural disasters alert app for tourists.
To report a crime, accident, or other emergency, dial ‘110’ from any telephone or visit your nearest koban (Police Box). In Tokyo, an English-language line to the Metropolitan Police is available from Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5:15 p.m., at 03-3501-0110.
If you fall ill or are injured, contact the front desk or concierge at your hotel for assistance. Tourist Information Centres located in tourist spots and train stations can direct you to a nearby medical facility. The AMDA International Medical Information Center also provides a telephone service to foreigners in Japan in several languages. They can provide introductions to medical facilities with staff who speak the patient’s language, and also explain the health care system to callers.
Tel: Tokyo 050-3598-7574 (office)
Tel: Tokyo 03-5285-8088 (consultation)
Tel: Osaka 06-4395-0555
Tel: Machida 042-799-3759
International travel insurance is highly recommended as medical costs can be high.
If you lose your passport, contact the foreign mission of your country:
Chancery: 2-1-14, Mita, Minato-ku, Tokyo.
Post Code: 108-8361
New Zealand Embassy
Chancery: 20-40, Kamiyama-cho, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo.
Post Code: 150-0047
Tourist Information Centres
There are more than 300 certified Tourist Information Centres throughout the country, located close to popular tourist attractions and major railway stations.
You can also call the Tourist Information Center hotline: 03 3201 3331 (open Monday to Friday 9.00am to 5.00pm)
Telephone & Postal Services
Domestic calls – payphones accept 10 yen or 100 yen coins as well as phonecards. A local call costs 10 yen every 57.5 seconds.
International calls – prepaid phone cards for international calls can be purchased at airports or from some convenience stores. Service providers include: KDDI, Softbank and NTT Communications.
• NSW, QLD, ACT, VIC & TAS: Japan is 1 hour behind
• NT & SA: Japan is 30 mins behind
• WA: Japan is 1 hour ahead
Daylight savings time:
• NSW, ACT, VIC & TAS: Japan is 2 hours behind
• QLD: Japan is 1 hour behind
• NT: Japan is 30 mins behind
• SA: Japan is 1.5 hours behind
• WA: Japan is 1 hour ahead
For other countries, see here.
Business Hours & Holidays
Electricity and voltage
The voltage used throughout Japan is uniformly 100 volts, A.C. There are two kinds of frequencies in use; 50 Hertz in eastern Japan and 60 Hertz in western Japan (including Nagoya, Kyoto and Osaka).
Australian appliances can be used in Japan as long as they have a travel adapter, which can be purchased at airports or in the travel section of department stores.
A 2-flat-pin plugs are used in Japan.
Please note that when purchasing electrical appliances from Japan, be sure to only purchase dual-voltage appliances such as laptop computers, digital cameras etc. Otherwise, a step-down power transformer will be required when using the Japanese appliance in Australia.