Want to know how to use Bitcoin in Tokyo? Here are a few options that let you get the most out of this cryptocurrency that’s been grabbing the world’s attention as its price soars.

What Is Bitcoin?

Bitcoin is a virtual currency created with computer code. Transactions are free and are made anonymously. An increasing number of businesses are using them, and in some parts of the world, they can even be used to order take-out. To use them, an individual sets up an e-wallet, where they then store, monitor, and spend the digital money. They can also purchase the currency (or a fraction of the currency, as a single Bitcoin now goes for ¥1,650,177, or $14,810.50) from a Bitcoin ATM or online exchange. Bitcoins aren’t printed but produced by individuals and businesses around the globe. They’re the first of an expanding category of currency known as cryptocurrency and it’s becoming increasingly popular, due to its anonymity and its absence of government control.

Bitcoin Is Big in Japan

One country that has seen a significant increase in Bitcoin usage is Japan. In July of this year, the country saw a rollout of 260,000+ Bitcoin-accepting stores. Three months after a joint venture was established between Bitcoin exchange Coincheck and Recruit Lifestyle, which made its POS app Bitcoin-ready, a chain of 334 spectacle stores immediately announced that it would begin using the app. Merchants that have signed up with Coincheck this year include a number of capsule hotels, and Kai Corporation, which owns five restaurants in Japan.

Where to Spend Bitcoin Online in Tokyo

Bitcoin has enjoyed most of its success online thus far, so for those in Tokyo, there’s no shortage of options to choose from when it comes to spending Bitcoin on the web. Any Shopify store accepts Bitcoin, for example, offering those in Tokyo a wide choice of retail outlets. A number of gift card companies, such as eGifter, also accept Bitcoin, enabling the recipient to redeem it at numerous well-known sites, including Amazon.

Companies like Microsoft offer games, along with other apps, in exchange for Bitcoin. Some game companies are even using it to power their in-game currency. Bitcoin is also popular with online casino games. Sites such as Bitcasino.io offer a seemingly endless array of favorite games to choose from, including Kawaii Dragons and Chicago Nights, and with a bonus up to 100% of the first deposit, users even get to use free bitcoins.

There are also a growing number of offline venues in Tokyo that accept bitcoin, especially when it comes to the city’s nightlife.

night scene of shinjuku streets

Bitcoin-Friendly Restaurants

When abroad, it can be annoying to exchange currency. In order to begin purchasing goods and services, travellers need to visit the local currency exchange store and pay a fee. With Bitcoin, this process can be omitted entirely. Should they purchase Bitcoin, and find an outlet that accepts it, payment can be processed immediately. The city of Tokyo is well aware of this, and, as a result, is seeing an increasing number of bars and restaurants welcome those with Bitcoin to spend.

One popular restaurant in Tokyo that accepts Bitcoin is Nikugatou. It’s the first Japanese-style BBQ restaurant in the world to accept the digital currency. The eatery, which specializes in lean beef, is a popular yakiniku restaurant in Tokyo.

Bitcoin-Friendly Bars

A specialist venue, the Bitcoin-accepting Hackers Bar offers entertainment via live programming and also looks to pair up companies with computer experts. “Hacker” in this case doesn’t refer to cybercriminals: instead, people who frequent this bar are folks who possess advanced knowledge and skills and can provide rapid and innovative solutions to the most complex of tasks.

Another bar in Tokyo that accepts Bitcoin is Awabar, a standing bar in the center of Roppongi. Due to its location, it attracts a number of senior manager-level customers from such Japanese IT firms as GREE and Yahoo!

Do you have any tips for using Bitcoin in Japan? Let us know in the comments!