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Foreign Exchange Guide to Japan

Read this currency guide to Japan with money transfer and travel tips.   [USD/JPY=112.246]

Japan
Country Code:
JP
Domestic Currency:
Japanese Yen
Symbol - Code:
¥ JPY
Telephone Prefix:
+81

This is a foreign exchange guide to Japan, the Japanese Yen currency plus JPY transfers and travel tips.


In this Japan currency guide we take a look at :

  1. Japanese Yen info - general info about the Japanese Yen
  2. Japanese Yen in the markets - recent JPY moves and predictions from the FX markets
  3. Travelling in Japan - currency & money saving tips
  4. Buying Japanese Yen cash online - travel money for Japan
  5. Sending money to Japan - save on Japanese Yen bank transfers to Japan
  6. Japanese Yen exchange rates - latest & historic exchange rates.
  7. JPY News - the latest Japanese Yen related articles from our blog.

Japanese Yen (JPY) general currency information


What is the Japanese Yen currency code and symbol?

The three letter currency code for the Japanese Yen is JPY and the symbol is ¥.


Which countries use the Japanese Yen?

It is the domestic currency in Japan.

According to the Bank for International Settlements, in 2016, trading in the Japanese yen (ISO: JPY) contributed to 22% of total foreign exchange market turnover, making the yen the world’s third most traded currency.

Like government bonds and gold, the Japanese yen is considered a safe haven asset – it is the premier safe haven of the currency world. This means that the yen is likely to increase in value against other currencies during periods of economic uncertainty or when global geopolitical risk is elevated, or during bouts of high market volatility.

Since 1995, against the US dollar, the yen’s lowest valuation came in August 1998 when USD/JPY reached 147.67 (¥100 cost a little less than $0.68). Its post-1995 high came in October 2011 when USD/JPY traded at just 75.56 (¥100 cost $1.32).

The Japanese yen is a crucial part of the ‘carry trade’ – a popular strategy among foreign exchange traders in which they borrow in a currency with a low interest rate and use those funds to invest in currencies paying a higher rate. In recent decades, the most popular way to fund the carry trade has been to borrow (sell) yen due to Japan’s consistently low interest rates (since 1996 Japanese rates have averaged less than 0.5%).


Japanese Yen (JPY) in the markets

Approaching the middle of August, the yen is the best performing currency of the year. Although it holds only a modest 1.7 percent gain over the US dollar (110.81) year-to-date, it's up handsomely elsewhere. Versus the Australian dollar (80.92), euro (126.43) and pound (141.60), the yen has gained an average of 8 percent.

The yen has been widely sought by investors in recent months due to its safe haven status. Investors have become more risk averse following chaos in emerging markets, led by Turkey and Argentina, and Washington’s massive tariffs on imported goods, which threaten global trade. The yen has also benefitted from speculation that the Bank of Japan will soon make changes to its ultra-loose monetary policy. Although low by international standards, yields on Japanese government bonds have risen to long-term highs and are now double 2017 averages.

In August, SEB was forecasting end-of-September rates of: EUR/JPY, 122; USD/JPY, 111; AUD/JPY, 82.

The interactive chart below shows the USD to JPY exchange rate for the previous 3 months with rate alerts for days when the exchange rate moved up or down significantly or for 30 day highs and lows.


USD-JPY 3 Month chart
USD-JPY 3 Month chart
USDJPY currency converter

Travel, Currency and Money saving tips for Japan

 

Though very expensive, Japan is one of the most amazing, beautiful, and friendly countries in the world. Japan is a high-tech world mixed with the politeness and respect of their past. It has all the benefits of a high tech country mixed with a lovely sense of the old. Japan has fantastic food, beautiful temples and shrines, zen gardens, national parks, and a culture with a long and rich history. It’s a wonderful place and, while it may be an expensive country to visit.

Most people can speak English and are willing to do so. Accommodation can be expensive, especially in Tokyo, but with a little looking around on the internet you can find some amazing deals. Food options cater to all, you can both go expensive or cheap, and neither is hard to find.

The easiest way to travel in Japan is by train, bullet trains can be expensive but are astoundingly fast and comfortable. Most of the city metro tickets cost 125-250 JPY for a single journey. In most major cities, you can buy a day pass, which gives you unlimited travel for 24 hours for around 1,000 JPY on select trains. Inter-city bus tickets cost around 2,500 JPY. For budget travelers the bus is an option, they are far cheaper but can take up to five times the amount of time to get to your destination.

Most temples and museums are free to enter, although some popular attractions cost around 1,250 JPY. The temples in Kyoto can cost up to 620 JPY. Many of the city’s parks are free, so take advantage when you can and spend the day there. The same for Tokyo, don't be afraid to get a decent map and wander around.

 

Travel money for Japan

 

Save money and time by Ordering your Japanese Yen online from Travelex, you get better rates and can pick up the JPY cash locally or even on travel day at the airport.

Another popular option is to use a Pre-paid Travel Card. Your Debit/Credit Card provider will charge you 2% from market mid-rate, but your bank may also charge an extra 3% as an “Overseas Transaction Charge” plus “Overseas ATM” fees for withdrawing cash.

For card purchases if offered a choice of currencies always select to Pay in Japanese Yen otherwise you may get much worst exchange rates.

 

Compare Travel Money Exchange Rates vs the Banks

USD $1,000 → Spend Japanese yen (JPY)

ProviderSpend Amount USDExchange RateCostReviewsLinks to Offers
Travelex Online US logoTravelex Online US
¥99,716 JPY
Top Provider
99.715611.2%
 
HSBC logoHSBC
¥98,720 JPY
¥996 less
98.7212.09%
Banks - Average Rate
U.S. Bank logo Wells Fargo Bank logo HSBC logo
¥97,395.33 JPY
¥2,321 less
98.053313.27%
Wells Fargo Bank logoWells Fargo Bank
¥96,746 JPY
¥2,970 less
98.7213.85%
U.S. Bank logoU.S. Bank
¥96,720 JPY
¥2,996 less
96.7213.87%
Travelex Online US: rate, rating & reviews
From amount:$1,000 USD
To amount:¥99,716 JPY
Exchange Rate:99.7156
Total Cost:11.2% (against USD/JPY mid-rate: 112.2968)
Fees:$0
Timestamp:
Rate Fetched: Wed Sep 19 2018 14:00:04 GMT+0000 (UTC)
Rating:
 
: 4.3/5.0
Reviews:
HSBC: rate, rating & reviews
From amount:$1,000 USD
To amount:¥98,720 JPY
Exchange Rate:98.72
Total Cost:12.09% (against USD/JPY mid-rate: 112.2968)
Fees:$0
Timestamp:15:07 Local
Rating:
: /5.0
Reviews:
 

Banks - Average Rate
U.S. Bank logo Wells Fargo Bank logo HSBC logo

Banks - Average Rate :
From amount:$1,000 USD
To amount:¥97,395.33 JPY
Exchange Rate:98.26
Total Cost:13.27% (against USD/JPY mid-rate: 112.2968)
Fees:$10
Wells Fargo Bank: rate, rating & reviews
From amount:$1,000 USD
To amount:¥96,746 JPY
Exchange Rate:98.72
Total Cost:13.85% (against USD/JPY mid-rate: 112.2968)
Fees: Minimum 20 USD
Timestamp:15:07 Local
Rating:
: /5.0
Reviews:
U.S. Bank: rate, rating & reviews
From amount:$1,000 USD
To amount:¥96,720 JPY
Exchange Rate:96.72
Total Cost:13.87% (against USD/JPY mid-rate: 112.2968)
Fees:$0
Timestamp:15:07 Local
Rating:
: /5.0
Reviews:
 
Sending a LARGER foreign transfer? Request a free multiple-vendor quote: Get Quotes
* Cost = exchange rate margin + fees vs USD/JPY mid-rate: 112.2968
Rates @ 09/19/2018
 

Japan Trip Checklist    

 
  1. Compare JPY travel cash rates - probably why you are here!
  2. Search Hotel deals - Save on your accomodation in Japan
  3. Lonely Planet - world's best travel guide (coupon and deals)

Sending money to Japan

When searching around for information on how to get a good exchange rate when sending money to Japan you need to start with finding out the latest Japanese Yen foreign-transfer exchange rate.

Then compare your bank's exchange rates to several licensed FX providers exchange rate and fees to see how much you can save (we make that calculation easy here).


Get a better deal for foreign transfers to Japan

When sending money to Japan it’s important to compare your bank’s rates & fees with those we have negotiated with our partner money transfer providers. To get a better deal you should follow these 4 simple steps :

  1. Open an account with a BER reviewed FX provider (id docs may be required)
  2. You specify the local or Japanese Yen amount you want to transfer
  3. Make a local currency domestic transfer for the requested amount to the provider's bank account in your country
  4. Once your funds are received by the provider the converted JPY amount will be transfered to the recipient account you specify in Japan.

Use our Send to JPY calculator to compare the exchange rates of FX specialist providers rates versus your bank's standard rates you can hopefully save around 5% and maybe more - end result is more Japanese Yen deposited into the recipient bank account and less margins and fees kept by the banks!

 

Compare Foreign Transfers vs the Banks

Send USD $10,000 → Receive JPY

ProviderReceive Amount JPYExchange RateCostReviewsLinks to Offers
OFX logoOFX
¥1,111,500 JPY111.151.02%
 
Wells Fargo Bank logoWells Fargo Bank
¥1,086,241 JPY108.823.27%
HSBC logoHSBC
¥1,085,469 JPY108.713.34%
Banks - Average Rate
Bank of America logo U.S. Bank logo Wells Fargo Bank logo HSBC logo
¥1,078,814.5 JPY108.51253.93%
Bank of America logoBank of America
¥1,071,774 JPY108.264.56%
U.S. Bank logoU.S. Bank
¥1,071,774 JPY108.264.56%
 
OFX: rate, rating & reviews
From amount:$10,000 USD
To amount:¥1,111,500 JPY
Exchange Rate:111.15
Total Cost:1.02% (against USD/JPY mid-rate: 112.2968)
Timestamp:
Rate Fetched: Wed Sep 19 2018 14:03:40 GMT+0000 (UTC)
Rating:
 
: 4.8/5.0
Reviews:
Wells Fargo Bank: rate, rating & reviews
From amount:$10,000 USD
To amount:¥1,086,241 JPY
Exchange Rate:108.82
Total Cost:3.27% (against USD/JPY mid-rate: 112.2968)
Difference:
¥25,259 JPY less than using OFX
Timestamp:15:07 Local
Rating:
: /5.0
Reviews:
HSBC: rate, rating & reviews
From amount:$10,000 USD
To amount:¥1,085,469 JPY
Exchange Rate:108.71
Total Cost:3.34% (against USD/JPY mid-rate: 112.2968)
Difference:
¥26,031 JPY less than using OFX
Timestamp:15:07 Local
Rating:
: /5.0
Reviews:
 

Banks - Average Rate
Bank of America logo U.S. Bank logo Wells Fargo Bank logo HSBC logo

Banks - Average Rate :
From amount:$10,000 USD
To amount:¥1,078,814.5 JPY
Exchange Rate:108.04
Total Cost:3.93% (against USD/JPY mid-rate: 112.2968)
Difference:
¥32,685 JPY less than using OFX
Bank of America: rate, rating & reviews
From amount:$10,000 USD
To amount:¥1,071,774 JPY
Exchange Rate:108.26
Total Cost:4.56% (against USD/JPY mid-rate: 112.2968)
Difference:
¥39,726 JPY less than using OFX
Timestamp:15:07 Local
Rating:
: /5.0
Reviews:
U.S. Bank: rate, rating & reviews
From amount:$10,000 USD
To amount:¥1,071,774 JPY
Exchange Rate:108.26
Total Cost:4.56% (against USD/JPY mid-rate: 112.2968)
Difference:
¥39,726 JPY less than using OFX
Timestamp:15:07 Local
Rating:
: /5.0
Reviews:
 
Sending a LARGER foreign transfer? Request a free multiple-vendor quote: Get Quotes
* Cost = exchange rate margin + fees vs USD/JPY mid-rate: 112.2968
Rates @ 09/19/2018
 

Major JPY cross rates


JPY/USD - Japanese Yen to United States Dollar - 10 Year History

DateExchange RatePeriod
09 Sep 20180.0090151 Week
17 Aug 20180.0090491 Month
20 Mar 20180.0093926 Months
16 Sep 20170.0090211 Year
16 Sep 20160.0097762 Years
17 Sep 20130.01015 Years
18 Sep 20080.00952110 Years

JPY/EUR - Japanese Yen to Euro - 10 Year History

DateExchange RatePeriod
09 Sep 20180.0077981 Week
17 Aug 20180.0079031 Month
20 Mar 20180.0076686 Months
16 Sep 20170.0075521 Year
16 Sep 20160.0087612 Years
17 Sep 20130.0075535 Years
18 Sep 20080.00662410 Years

JPY/GBP - Japanese Yen to British Pound Sterling - 10 Year History

DateExchange RatePeriod
09 Sep 20180.0069731 Week
17 Aug 20180.0070961 Month
20 Mar 20180.0067076 Months
16 Sep 20170.0066381 Year
16 Sep 20160.0075192 Years
17 Sep 20130.0063425 Years
18 Sep 20080.00523210 Years

JPY/AUD - Japanese Yen to Australian Dollar - 10 Year History

DateExchange RatePeriod
09 Sep 20180.01271 Week
17 Aug 20180.01241 Month
20 Mar 20180.01226 Months
16 Sep 20170.01131 Year
16 Sep 20160.01302 Years
17 Sep 20130.01085 Years
18 Sep 20080.011910 Years

JPY/CAD - Japanese Yen to Canadian Dollar - 10 Year History

DateExchange RatePeriod
09 Sep 20180.01191 Week
17 Aug 20180.01181 Month
20 Mar 20180.01236 Months
16 Sep 20170.01101 Year
16 Sep 20160.01292 Years
17 Sep 20130.01045 Years
18 Sep 20080.010110 Years

JPY News and Forecasts