Spare Change! Finally a Solution for 1 and 5 Yen Coins!


This is a solution I have been waiting for since I moved to Japan over 5 years ago. Got spare change? Those 1 and 5 yen coins can easily accumulate over time. While you could use them at a convenience store or cash them in at a bank, this takes considerable time to count manually. Plus, you have to face the look on the cashier’s face when you present them with over 600 1 yen coins.

If you’re interested in our FAQ Section, you can check our page on Life in Japan or our dedicated Exploring Japan post.

Fear not, there is another solution, and it’s as easy as you could hope for. There is a machine titled ‘Pocket Change’ and it is the 1 yen and 5 yen dream residents and maybe even tourists have been praying for. Say goodbye to those useless stacks of coins, and say hi to more credit on your Suica, Pasmo or other IC card. You also have a bunch of other options too, like receiving a coupon in Japan Yen or your home country’s currency.

To use the machine, it is as simple as selecting the language, selecting the currency and currency options available. For example, adding credit to your IC card means, you choose English (or your desired language), Japanese Yen and then charge your IC card. If you are trying to cash in you 1 yen coins only, please note it takes a maximum of 125 yen per transaction. Hence, it may take a bit of time depending on how many you have. Note it also aceepts other coin denominations, plus other countries currencies too.

Thank You, Anon

Unfortunately, I cannot take any credit for discovering this solution, as I found it in one of the Travel in Japan discussion groups via Facebook. So, thank you, anonymous user, you helped me credit 600 yen in 1 yen coins to my Suica card today. However, in saying that I knew this valuable information should not be wasted, and so I knew I needed to share it here on FAQ.

The good thing about these machines is that they are available all over Japan too, including most of the major international airports. You can also find them in many of the Donki Quijote stores too across the major cities and districts. For more information, we recommend you check out the Pocket Change website.

If you’re planning your travels in Japan, we invite you to join our rapidly expanding Travel in Japan Discussion Group via facebook.

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