Half Of Tokyoites Prefer to Wave Instead of Swiping and Counting

Illustration for article titled Half Of Tokyoites Prefer to Wave Instead of Swiping and Counting

According to an online survey polling 2,250 Tokyo shoppers, over half prefer to use electronic money cards instead of cold hard cash or other tender. Will a similar trend follow in the States when such cards become commonly issued?


It's notable that there are "over 130 million e-money cards issued," which amounts to "more than enough for Japan's estimated population of 127 million citizens." I wonder why only about half appear to prefer using the prepaid e-money cards when there are enough for everyone out there. 'Fess up. Who's hogging the cards?

Actually, I can kinda understand why someone is snatching these cards up: they make you feel like a magician! While they work like prepaid debit cards, e-money cards (Suica, Edy Cards, and similar) are contactless smart cards which just need to be waved at a kiosk, vending machine, or terminal. This is similar to RFID tech found in some credit cards in the States, but way more commonly accepted overseas. I can't wait until e-money cards are commonly issued here so that I can feel like Cinderella's fairy godmother every time I shop for gifts. [NIKKEI]


Photo by VS Medios

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I'm not sure what the point is, why not just use your debit card? The contactless wave chip is becoming more and more common now (my credit card has one but my debit card doesn't, probably because my debit card is two years older), and I don't have to go through the trouble of loading a separate card since debit is already connected to my direct deposit checking account.

Plus, since it's connected to my bank account I have fraud protection. If somebody steals the card, I don't lose any money. This e-money thing just sounds like a series of hassles to replace a system that already works better.