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Banks and Post Offices

Inkan (Personal Seal)

Inkan, indispensable for many administrative procedures, is a personal seal used instead of a signature.
Inkan may be ordered at speciality shops called ‘Inkanya’


To open a futsu koza (ordinary savings), inkan and ID document (passport or a Certificate of Foreign Registration) are necessary. Cash withdrawal/deposit, fund transfer services are available at ATMs (Automatic Teller Machines) during business hours. It is possible to use a bank cash card at other banks’ ATMs, although a commission fee is charged. ATM services close early, especially on weekends and national holidays, at most banks. Keep ATM operating hours in mind so as not to be left without adequate funds.

Automatic Deposit and Withdrawal

Ask your employer(s) to perform procedures for your payment to be automatically deposited into your bank account. An automatic debiting service is available for utility payments (water, gas, electricity, phone, etc.) Application for this service may be conducted at your bank. Alternatively contact individual utilities. It takes about two months to complete the application procedures.

Foreign Currency Exchange and Fund Transfer

Foreign currency exchange and fund transfer to foreign bank accounts are available at many banks (commission fees are applicable). While telegraphic transfers are the fastest way to send funds overseas, international postal money order is the cheapest. International postal money order is available at any post office.

Post Office Savings

A savings service is available also at post offices. The advantage of postal savings is that depositors can make transactions without extra commission fees across Japan. English guidance is available on ATM screens.

Postal Service

The Post Office Guide, an English guidebook updated every March, provides information on postal service charges, size limits, registered mail, express delivery, delivery delays, etc. The Guide is available at your local post office.

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