Deposit-free IC card: tourist in Japan

On February 15th, JR (Japan Railways) announced the release of a new IC card called “Welcome Suica” designed specifically for foreign visitors to Japan who use public transportation for a short period of time.

The card features a design that showcases Japanese sakura and offers a benefit of prepaid public transportation services without requiring a deposit. Typically, there is a 500 yen deposit required to issue an IC card, but Welcome Suica is offered as a Japanese souvenir, free of deposit for foreign guests.

It covers all the areas that are covered by SUICA and PASMO, including buses, trains, and underground trains. Sales for the card will begin in September, and it can be purchased at Haneda airport station, Airport 2nd terminal station, and JR East Travel Service Centers such as Tokyo station, Shinjuku station, and Shibuya station.

Additional information and an image of the new IC card are available in Japanese.

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