When you visit Japan, you will definitely see or use a Suica Card. For those unfamiliar with travel in Japan, Suica is a rechargeable contactless smart card that can be used as a fare card on train lines/buses as well as electronic money at convenience stores and other select shops in Japan.
Those living in Japan or those who have visited Japan before, did you notice a small irregular cut on the side next to the penguin?
We checked the travel cards for trains and subways in other countries,
and most seemed to be even on all sides without any notch or cut.
So why does the Japanese Suica Card have this?
It is a design element so that the visually challenged will know which side to insert in the automatic ticket machines. You hold the notched side and insert the opposite side. With this small identification system, the visually challenged seamlessly use the ticket machines for recharging their cards.
Having said that, not many countries cater to the visually or physically challenged and barrier-free access is still rare. In addition to Japan, the United States also has this design, and we hope many more countries will add such designs and systems.
In case you are visiting Japan later this year, don’t miss out on buying one of these new tourist-friendly cards with cherry blossoms!
There is no need to pay a deposit for the new card, but watermelon is no longer a watermelon.
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