Japan to test biometric payments for foreign tourists from Saturday

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20:33 28 September 2016

TOKYO, Sept. 28, Kyodo

Japan will begin a trial cashless payment service using biometric technology for foreign tourists from Oct. 1, the Japanese economy ministry said Wednesday.

The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry will start the service at tourism spots in three areas — the Kanto area around Tokyo, the Kansai region in the west and Kyushu in the southwest, as the government aims to lift the number of overseas visitors ahead of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics.

In the Kanto area, a trial will be conducted at hotel and inn check-ins in popular tourist areas such as the hot spring town of Hakone in Kanagawa Prefecture, southwest of Tokyo.

The Omotenashi (hospitality) platform using biometric identification technology is being developed by Dai Nippon Printing Co. and Deloitte Tohmatsu Consulting LLC.

Upon arrival in Japan, tourists will have to register their fingerprints and other information such as credit card details to make cashless payments for dinner, accommodation or other services.

Tourists will also receive information such as a transportation guide on their smartphones in their pre-registered language, the ministry said.


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