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Take an ATM/Debit card and a couple of credit cards (one as a backup in case you have a problem with the other one). It is important to try to select cards which don't charge a foreign transaction fee (if you don't have a local source, Capital One issues them on-line without an annual fee. The cards should have chips and four digit PIN's (on credit card, it's optional, but have one assigned if your bank allows it).

Your ATM card should work in most major bank;s machines there, but if you have issues, every 7-Eleven has an ATM which takes US bank cards.

Contrary to what you might think, US dollars are not much use over there.

Tipping is simply not practiced in Japan under any circumstance. The main train station in major cities is full of reasonably priced restaurants of all imaginable types.

(Author of "Take the High Road - A Primer for the Independent Traveler")
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