Knowledge of Japan Travel

How to use Japanese restaurant ticket machines: A guide for foreign visitors

When dining out in Japan, it’s not uncommon to encounter restaurant ticket machines. These machines can be intimidating for foreign visitors, especially if you don’t speak Japanese. However, once you understand how they work, they can make the ordering process much more efficient. In this guide, we’ll explain how to use Japanese restaurant ticket machines and provide some tips for a smoother experience.

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Understanding the basics of Japanese restaurant ticket machines

Restaurant ticket machines are commonly found in fast food restaurants, ramen shops, and other casual dining establishments. They are typically located near the entrance and consist of a series of buttons or touch screens. Each button corresponds to a menu item, and selecting the button will generate a ticket with the item name and price.

After selecting all the items you want to order, take the tickets to the cashier or server to pay. In some cases, the machine will accept payment directly, usually by inserting coins or bills.

Reading the menu and selecting items

The first step to using a Japanese restaurant ticket machine is to read the menu and select the items you want to order. If you don’t speak Japanese, look for pictures or symbols that indicate the type of dish. Many machines also have English or other language options, so look for a button labeled “English” or with a flag icon.

Once you’ve found the item you want, press the corresponding button or touch screen icon. Some machines may require you to select additional options, such as the level of spiciness or the amount of noodles.

Paying for your order

After selecting all your items, the machine will print out one or more tickets. Take the tickets to the cashier or server to pay. If the machine accepts payment directly, insert coins or bills into the appropriate slot.

If you have a large order or are unsure how to pay, don’t hesitate to ask the server for assistance. They are usually happy to help, and many restaurants have staff who speak English or other languages.

Tips for a smoother experience

  • Look for pictures or symbols on the menu to help you identify dishes.
  • If you don’t speak Japanese, look for a button labeled “English” or with a flag icon.
  • Some machines may only accept cash, so be sure to have enough on hand.
  • Don’t hesitate to ask the server for assistance if you need help ordering or paying.
  • Take your time and double-check your order before paying to avoid any mistakes.

In conclusion, Japanese restaurant ticket machines can seem daunting at first, but they are a common feature in many casual dining establishments. By understanding the basics and following these tips, you can navigate them with ease and enjoy a delicious meal.

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