Three major Japanese banks say that they will revamp their ATMs to allow customers with credit cards issued in foreign countries to make yen withdrawals.
Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Mizuho and Sumitomo Mitsui banks took the action after a request from the government. Japanese officials are trying to increase the number of foreign visitors.
Japan has traditionally been a strictly cash-based society. A growing number of retail shops accept credit cards issued in foreign countries, but few banks allow the cardholders to withdraw yen from ATMs. This situation has been inconvenient for foreign tourists.
The probability for the Kanto region to be hit by a powerful earthquake - lower 6 or higher on the Japanese intensity scale of 7 - within 30 years has risen, the government panel's latest quake probability map showed Friday. (The Japan News)
Sales of special Suica cards to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the opening of Tokyo Station were canceled soon after they began Saturday, as a large crowd of people flooded the area. (The Japan News)
The Niigata prefectural government started clearing a section of National Highway Route 405 in Tsunan in the prefecture on Friday, after a landslide mixed with snow blocked off about 50 meters of the road the night before. (The Japan News)
The Chiba Public Safety Commission has banned a 29-year-old man from Matsudo, Chiba Prefecture, from riding a bicycle for 90 days, after he was found guilty of cycling under the influence of "kiken" quasi-legal drugs. (Japan Times)