More affordable restaurants abound in downtown office building basements, the dining floors of department stores, urban shopping centres, and the underground malls of the busiest railway stations.
At lunchtime, office workers crowd these dining spots. Many order teishoku, a low-priced complete meal on a tray. Most restaurants in the moderate to inexpensive price range have realistic plastic models of their dishes, with prices, in a showcase outside the entrance. If you don't know what to order, point to the dish you want to try. Some restaurants have bilingual (Japanese and English) menus, and you can use JNTO's Tourist's Handbook as a handy phrase book for dining out. Paperback guidebooks to inexpensive Japanese dishes are available at major bookstores.
For people in a hurry, noodle stands, coffee shops, fast-food outlets and vending machines provide a variety of food and drink at very low cost.
At most restaurants, you receive a bill and pay as you leave. A few have you buy a meal coupon in advance and hand it to the waiter or waitress. Payment is made in cash except when credit cards are accepted. Inexpensive restaurants, coffee shops and fast-food outlets accept cash only. No tipping, please.