What Is Currency in Japan? | Japanese Currency Guide

In this article, we’re answering “What is the currency in Japan?” But instead of keeping you waiting, the answer is the Japanese yen.

Below, we will answer common questions we receive about the Yen, the history of Japanese currency, and insights into the best way to send money to Japan from abroad.

This article is part of our free series on foreign currency bank accounts which you can access here.

Feel free to use the table of contents to jump ahead to the sections most relevant to you.

Table of Contents

  1. What Is Currency in Japan?
  2. How Much Is $100 US in Japanese Currency?
  3. How Can I Send Money to Japan?
  4. Frequently Asked Questions
  5. Do You Want Help Opening Bank Accounts?

What Is Currency in Japan?

The official currency in Japan is the yen with the currency symbol ¥ and ISO 4217 code JPY. The yen has been legal tender in Japan since 1871, when Japan introduced the New Currency Act. The JPY is the third most traded currency in foreign currency markets after the USD and EUR.

How Can I Send Money to Japan?

In order to send currency to Japan, individuals and businesses can choose from a wide range of options, including conventional transfer methods and more obscure options.

Not surprisingly, the first option that most people consider is sending a bank transfer. If you are sending funds from abroad, this will involve sending a transfer through the SWIFT network.

SWIFT stands for the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication, which is a network of international banks that facilitate international transfers across the globe.

That said, there are a wide range of alternative transfer methods to choose from when sending money to Japan, including the following.

Options for Sending Money to Japan

  • International transfer services
  • Money order services
  • Paypal or other peer-to-peer transfer services
  • Cryptocurrency transfers
  • Sending physical checks

Here is a closer look at a few of the most popular options in great detail.

International Transfer Services

There are a wide range of international transfer services to choose from when sending money to Japan. In most cases, these services are delivered through digital platforms and mobile applications.

In addition to offering convenience, international transfer services are also one of the lowest cost options available. Additionally, if you choose to use one of the larger transfer services, your transfers will be secure with large licensed financial institutions.

Money Order Services

International money orders are available in most countries. However, it’s important to note that they are often more expensive than some of the other options available.

That said, money orders are secure and offer an immediate solution to sending funds. When using a large money order service provider, you can also arrange for money to be picked up in cash or to have it deposited directly into a bank account.

Peer-to-Peer Transfer Services

Peer-to-peer transfer services are another option for sending money to Japan. In fact, they are one of the fastest and most affordable ways to transfer funds.

However, peer-to-peer transfer services do require both parties to have accounts with the same platform. Additionally, they can often be more challenging to fund and withdraw funds from than traditional bank accounts.

How to Choose a Method for Sending Money to Japan?

As you can see, each of the options above have different pros and cons. So, it’s important to consider your specific objectives and situation when selecting a method to send money to Japan.

Additionally, you should consider all of the options available. When doing so, consider the security, cost, and delay in your funds arriving to the intended recipient.

How Much Is $100 US in Japanese Currency?

Over the last five years, the value of $100 US dollars in Japan has ranged from a low of  ¥ 10,268 and a high of ¥ 15,018. However, in recent years the value of $100 USD has been between ¥ 15,018 and ¥ 12,788.

Frequently Asked Questions

Below are three of the most common questions that we receive from people looking into what currency is in Japan. If you have further questions you would like answered, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us directly.

What Is the Best Place to Buy Japanese Yen?

Japanese yen can be purchased at commercial banks, certain building societies, foreign currency exchanges, and online. However, if you are traveling to Japan, you can also choose to pay via international credit card. Though we suggest only using credit cards that provide free foreign currency transactions and do not charge a premium on market exchange rates.

What Has Been Causing the Decline in the Japanese Yen?

In 2023, the decline in the Japanese yen was primarily driven by the difference between Japanese and US interest rates. That said, many foreign currencies experienced the same fate was the US Federal Reserve Board started aggressively increasing interest rates.

How Much is $1 US in Japanese?

Over the last five years, the value of $1 US dollars in Japan has ranged from a low of  ¥ 102.68 and a high of ¥ 150.184. However, in recent years the value of $1 USD has been between ¥ 150.184 and ¥ 127.88.

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