I'm building a site which will allow users to enter physical street addresses. My primary target audience is US-based but I'd like the site to be global and also accommodate an international audience entering non-United States addresses. These addresses will in turn be displayed on the site.
When accepting these addresses should I allow non-extended-Latin characters in the address itself (I'm thinking Arabic/Chinese/Japanese)? Or are non-U.S. user's used to dealing with entering address info in extended latin only? Is there an obvious answer or is it nuanced?
The country is coming from a dropdown list so that's not an issue, but the city, state/province/territory, and address lines are all entered manually.
Some issues are:
I generate a url slug using the city name as part of it. My current slug generation process will down convert 'ü' to 'u' (this is okay) and eliminate arabic/chinese/japanese etc. characters. I can still get a valid url but it will be a lot sparser cutting city name out.
I also geocode the addresses and not sure how well this will play with non-extended-latin characters.
Usefulness of non-Latin address to users who do not speak the language the address is written in.
Note: While accurate addresses are highly desirable they are not mission critical i.e., I'm not shipping/billing
To clarify, addresses are absolutely essential to the application and there is zero possibility of not including them. I just meant to say that it's really up to me what I will accept or not.
To put the question a different way, when someone in Japan orders something off Amazon.com are they entering their shipping address in Japanese characters or are they using the Latin alphabet to enter it? I'm looking for what is the standard convention for accepting non-extended Latin characters.
Are they entering:
New Miyako Hotel 17, Nishikujo-Inmachi Minami-ku, Kyoto 601-8412, Japan
新・都ホテル Japan 〒601-8412 京都府京都市南区西九条院町１７
If I force them to enter in addresses in the Latin alphabet will I be going against the convention? What about if I just force the city name to be in Latin alphabet?