Visa launches Tokyo Shopping Guide


Visa cardholders visiting Japan can enjoy even more special discounts and privileges when they use their Visa card through the Tokyo Style 2009 Fashion Guide, which was launched Monday by Visa.

The Tokyo Style 2009 Fashion Guide provides Visa cardholders visiting Japan a range of preferential treatments from a selection of 19 deluxe labels and 24 premiere stores. Visa cardholders who present coupons from the Tokyo Style 2009 Fashion Guide and make purchases using their Visa card at participating stores will be given a 10% discount or will be able to receive an array of original gifts and services from each store.

The offers are available through April 30, 2010.

This Tokyo Style 2009 Fashion Guide is a continuation of programs developed in the past for Visa cardholders in cooperation with top Japanese electronics goods stores, department stores and other leading merchants.

This new program is designed to help visitors obtain items from Japan’s leading fashion retail outlets such as Beams, United Arrows, Tommorowland, CA4LA, and Estnation —which operate primarily from individual street-side stores. Visa cardholders using the Tokyo Style 2009 Fashion Guide can also enjoy complimentary drinks at Loveless shops as well as an assortment of other items to enhance their shopping experience in Tokyo.

The Tokyo Style 2009 Fashion Guide can be downloaded from Visa’s special campaign website ( Customers can enjoy a range of benefits simply by printing the guide and showing it to staff at participating stores when purchasing items with their Visa card.

Currently available in English, Korean and traditional Chinese, this guide will be available in four language versions—a Korean version, two Chinese language versions (in simplified and traditional characters), and an English version.

© Japan Today

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guide point number one:

dont use a visa card!

end of guide ----

seriously why waste so much time.

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non Asians need not bother - you won't find clothes to fit in these brand stores!

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Also don't bother using your VISA card in regular ATMs as it won't work. Get your magnifying glass out and notice the sticker that says 'Japan issued card only' Ahh, old fashioned banking in Japan.......Priceless

Or is that Mastercard.

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a major selling point of credit cards was supposed to be that they're international. except in japan, of course

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10% discount come on, the mark up is like 80%

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Is this a sick joke? I have to tell you because I am so mad about this right now:

Mum visited from the UK recently. In Ito Yokado they declined her visa card. They then declined my British issued visa card, but my J issued one went through just fine. They said the problem was with the card and to contact visa.

20 minutes later we went to Jusco and used both British issued visa cards NO PROBLEM AT ALL.

A week later in a restaurant (Bubba Gump shrimp) the British issued visa card was again declined. We were furious - she had to pay cash for anything she wanted to pay for (which you can only get at PO ATM's anyway), and it was VERY embarrassing having your card declined everywhere when we knew there was nothing wrong with it.

So we investigated further and here is what we discovered: The card services for retailers are run by the banks. Some banks have no problem with foreign visa cards. However, Mitsui Sumitomo - although they will never admit to this officially - have put a blanket ban on all foreign issued visa cards used in Japan. So basically, at any retailer for whom Mitsui Sumitomo provides card services you will not be able to use your foreign issued card.

They wouldn't tell us which retailers they do the service for so it is ewntirely hit and miss, but as above I can confirm Jusco is OK, IY isn't. The reason we were told is that apparently there is high risk of foreign cards being used fraudulently in Japan, because there is no chip and pin system here and they don't even check the signature. But of course fraud doesn't happen with J issued visa cards because Japanese are above reproach when it comes to honesty.

Japan can't possibly expect tourists to come here and spend lots of cash in the economy when the banks (or rather bank - I only know of one but there may be others) are preventing them from doing it!!!

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If it's any consolation to anyone, my Japan-issued Visa was turned down in the UK once. (After that once, I didn't bother - just got my Dad to pay for everything by cheque, and reimbursed him later)

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Kirakira: add Muji stores to your ¨I am sorry sir, but your card is blocked¨ list. Recently an American friend with more than 5 thousand dollars limit had this ungracious experience, only to call her bank in US and hear the same you said above.

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I have had my card refused in Yodabashi camera on two occasions. It's quite embarrassing actually and annoying when you consider that as kirakira25 said, the lack of chip and pin causes these problem yet the locals can get away with not having to sign at all in many places, yet foreign cards that do feature modern security measures may get flagged to prevent fraud.

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Oh good, thank you LostinNagoya, I will add them to the list. I'm sorry your friend had this experience butglad it is notjust me - you really start to feel like you are being paranoid after a few experiences like this!

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The ATM thing is odd. Anyway, Citibank, Post Office and 7-11 machines will accept foreign issued VISA cards.

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Well Kirakira, I think that 9 out of 10 foreigners, if not all of them, have had their credit cards refused someplace in Japan. I had my credit card refused in very strange situations like this: on the first floor of Tokyu Hands it was refused, on the second floor I tried it, and it was accepted - this time, I thought, it was refused because the owner, i.e. me, was a foreigner. So, I have stopped using my cards in Japan, I use them only abroad. It works like this: if I have money I buy, if I don´t I go to an ATM. No cards in Japan anymore.

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Its worse than that, each key card also can get refused at certain ATM's. Its hit an miss all across japan to get any money.

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from a selection of 19 deluxe labels and 24 premiere stores.

As soon as you see the words 'deluxe' and 'premiere' you know you're going to be ripped off.


What I find frightening in Japan is that storeowners NEVER check your signature. Hell, they even give you back the card before you sign. And in some supermarkets like Saty where they have the self-service cashiers, you just put your card in the machine to pay. You don't even need to enter your PIN!!!! In other words, losing your card is like losing cash. And my friend actually absent-minded left his card there. Thank god someone handed it in.

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