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Households' usage of e-money Japan 2019, by number of users

In 28.5 percent of all households in Japan, one family member was using electronic money in 2019. That year, an average of around 59.2 percent of the surveyed households had at least one or more members using e-money.

What is electronic money?

In Japan, the term electronic money often refers to a pre-paid means of cashless payment. Many e-money providers offer IC smart cards to enable contactless payments. The first smart card in Japan was issued in 2001. Next to retail companies and payment service providers, many public transportation companies have introduced their own e-money cards for the collection of transportation fees.

The spread of e-money in Japan

In Japan, pre-paid smarts cards are accepted at convenience stores and other shops, and can be used to pay for vending machine products and public transportation fees. There is a growing number of e-money terminals available in Japan, offering consumers the opportunity to pay cashless.
Although the average amount of money spent per electronic money transaction excluding transportation fares has been relatively small, the annual value of transactions with e-money has grown significantly over the past decade. Many smart card providers offer the issuance of virtual smart cards on mobile phones. Nevertheless, physical e-mobile smart cards have been more prevalent in Japan and exceeded the e-money cards issued on mobile phones in numbers.

Electronic money usage penetration of households in Japan in 2019, by number of users

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Release date

February 2020



Survey time period


Number of respondents

2,087 households nationwide

Method of interview


Supplementary notes

According to the source, the average household in Japan consisted of 2.33 persons in 2019.

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