Most people have an image of Japan being an expensive place in which to travel. This used to be the case, but no longer is. Of course, there are still items and places that are expensive such as hard to get fruit like mangoes, or coffee shops in the centre of Tokyo. However, Japan has been in deflation for 2 decades now, and this has resulted in Japan being a much more affordable place, cheaper to travel in than say Australia or New Zealand. For example, ski lift tickets are usually less than ¥5,000, a lunch at a ski resort restaurant will set you back between ¥800 and ¥1,500 , and rental equipment between ¥3,000 and ¥5,000 a day. You can do it even cheaper by buying "Bento boxes" at convenience shops or supermarkets which is usually a variety of cooked food (such as rice/salmon/vegetables) inside a microwaveable box for for anywhere between ¥300 and ¥1,000. Groceries are the same or cheaper than most western countries overall.
Exchanging/withdrawing money in Japan
The best option is to have an international credit cards of the type seen in the picture below right. These can be used at Japanese 7/11 convenience shops and also at post offices throughout Japan to withdraw cash and this is a far better solution than taking travellers cheques or carrying around large wads of cash. Be aware though, that postal ATM machines are not open 24/7, and that many places do not accept credit cards, so do not rely on it other than to withdraw cash from the ATMs. Travellers cheques can be exchanged at most banks.
Tipping is not normal and Japan, and if you wish to show gratitude for extra special service you are better to give them a small gift such as a souvenir from your home country, or something such as a yummy looking cake from a bakery.