What You Need To Know About The Suica Card

What is the Suica Card?

The Suica card is a prepaid card you can top up to pay for your shopping and other expenses. You will no longer need to line up and buy a ticket from a vending machine. All you have to do is use the Suica card at the ticketing gate, and the funds will be directly deducted from the card. The card can be used for various types of modes of transportation, such as subways and buses. It is a new form of smart travel.    

See the Suica Map for transportation systems you can use with the Suica.

You can use the Suica card to pay for purchases with the e-money loaded within. It is possible to use the card to buy drinks from vending machines and newspapers from kiosks. The Suica card makes traveling in Japan a lot easier.



How much does a Suica Card cost?

Please note that the prices listed below include a 500 JPY deposit. The adult and Jr. pass vary in the amount of funds used in transportation.



Where can I purchase a Suica Card?

The Suica card can be purchased in all major JR East stations at the multifunction ticket vending machines and JR ticket offices. You may also pre-book your Suica card through KKday



Using Your Suica Card for Transportation 

Riding Trains

Lightly tap your card on the reader at the ticket gate to enter the platforms. You no longer need to purchase a ticket.

The fare will automatically be calculated at the station you get off. You will need to add more money to the card if you have insufficient funds. 

Additional tickets must be purchased to use the Suica for travel on a limited express, express, or Green Car. The Suica cannot be used for travel on the Shinkansen.

  • The Suica can be used on JR East lines in the Tokyo metropolitan area as well as for subways, buses, and the Tokyo Monorail that connects Haneda Airport with Tokyo.
  • In addition to the Tokyo area, the Suica can be used for certain transportation systems in the Sendai and Niigata, Hokkaido, Tokai, West Japan, and Kyushu areas.

Click here for the map of Tokyo metropolitan area 

Click here for the map of Tokyo metropolitan area (Quick Reference)



Where can I use the Suica card?

Suica cards cannot be used for continuous travel between different areas. When the card is used in one area, the trip must end in that specific area. If you are crossing different areas, you must first leave the ticket gate and re-enter.  



How do I use the Suica Card for shopping with E-money?

You can also use the Suica card for shopping. The card can be used to purchase items from trains, vending machines, rent lockers, convenient stores, and restaurants. To know more which establishments accept Suica Card payments, click here.  



How do I recharge the Suica Card?

You can load the Suica Card with funds as many times as you want. 

The maximum amount of funds the Suica Card can hold is 20,000 JPY.

Credit cards cannot be used to load the card.  



What about refunds?

Suica cards can only be refunded at the place it was issued. 

When you return the card, your deposit of 500 JPY and any funds remaining will be returned to you, but a charge of 220 JPY will be deducted from the total amount of returned funds.  For example, with a balance of 1,000 JPY, the fee of 220 JPY is subtracted for 780 JPY, and then the deposit of 500 JPY is added for a refund of 1,280 JPY.



How long is the card valid?

If the card has not been used, in 10 years, then it becomes invalid. You either get a replacement card, or a refund, both options give you your money back.  

Please note that lost cards will not be reissued. 

You must purchase tickets when traveling to places that don’t accept Suica Cards.



*Featured image via KKday