Living Information (Details)

Private Apartments

Basic Knowledge of How to Rent an Apartment

Renting Japanese apartments have some unique system. Please learn the following knowledge and housing terminology before contacting a real estate company.

Initial Costs

In addition to monthly rent, following fee will be required to be paid upon initiation of the lease.
 Shikikin or deposit is required for most apartment lease contracts and is usually equal to one or two months’ rent. Your landlord is required to return your deposit to you when you vacate the property, after deducting for cleaning costs and any damage beyond normal wear and tear.
 Reikin or gratuity money (or called key money) is refundable payment to your landlord. It is often same price with Shikikin. (equal to one or two months’ rent)
 Agent fee is paid to the real estate company as commission. Industry standard requires one month’s rent.
In total, you might need to prepare at least six months’ rent upfront.
To rent apartments, you need to go through a long process with a
real estate company by yourself. Also, rooms are basically not
furnished. Though, if you are looking for complete privacy with
independent lifestyle, this might be a good choice for you.

House Terminology

敷金(Shiki-kin) rental deposit
gratuity money / key money
TIPS...It will be useful to take photos of your room before moving in. They will be proofs of weather damages of the room were made by you or not, to get more of your shikikin back later.

Joint Guarantor

When renting an apartment in Japan, you will be asked to provide the contact details and signature of a Rentai Hoshounin or a joint guarantor. A joint guarantor is a co-signer who takes legal responsibility in case the tenant defaults on payment of rent or damages. They must be over 20 years of age and a Japanese citizen with regular income (T
For being a guarantor is a huge responsibility, arranging a guarantor is perhaps the most difficult part
of all the housing process.

Other Guarantor Services

There are lots of companies provide rent guarantor services. One of those provides the service in English and many other different languages. (Global Trust Service: Trust Net 21) House Terminology
連帯保証人(Rentai- hoshonin) a joint guarantor How to Subscribe to the System
https://www.students.k student/files/a1505972040900.pdf Global Trust Service: Trust Net 21 warranty/tenant/#tenant02

Layout & Measurement Terms

House Terminology 坪(tsubo)
measurement unit of 3.3 m2
畳(jo) measurement unit of 1.65 m2 To describe the size of a room, 3 measurement units can be used.  m2,tsubo (about 3.3m2)
jō (about 1.65m2, or 0.5 tsubo)
“Jo” is often used term more than others. One jo size is equivalent of one tatami mat.
The following is the list of acronyms used in floor maps.


Type of Room Term
Storage 1SLDK
1LDK with a storage

Japanese Room

It is getting less, but there are still some apartments have traditional Japanese-style rooms called washitsu, 和室. The floor is covered with tatami mats (woven straw) usually comes with sliding doors, called fusuma, made of wooden frames and thick, opaque paper.
traditional Japanese- style rooms


There are several English-speaking realtors near Shonandai Station as listed below. Some of their websites are available only in Japanese, but they have staff members who will be able to assist you in English.

Request Form for Housing Referral

If you want to obtain apartment information from the realtors listed below, please fill in the "Request Form for Housing Referral" in Appendix A.
And send it to the SFC Student Life section via email.
SFC Student Life section will forward the request form to all of the realtors below, and you will be contacted by realtors if there are apartments that satisfy your specifications. Alternatively, you may also contact realtors directly.

Shared Residence

Shared House / Guest House
Besides living in a privately rented apartment or a dormitory, a
shared house is another option to consider. Living in a shared house
will provide you with the opportunity to widen your circle of friends.
Shared houses are ideal who desires a sense of community at home.
Several people (not necessarily students) live together in a same
house and share common areas such as a kitchen, a living room and
bathrooms while an individual can enjoy a private living space. Some
shared houses have women-only properties available as well.

In terms of cost, shared houses typically have lower initial and
monthly fees compared to regular rental apartments.
They do not usually require high deposits, key money and/or other
initial fees. Also, they are mostly furnished. Plus, the costs for
gas/electricity/water/internet will be shared by all residents and
regulated by the management, so you do not have to apply for those
services separately. In most cases you do not need a guarantor, but
some emergency contacts in Japan instead.
Please note that there is always the possibility of problems arising

from sharing common spaces like the kitchen or living room with

Pros/Cons of Each Type of Accommodation

Please inform yourself of all housing possibilities, and choose our accommodation wisely.

Gas, Water, and Electricity

The first thing you need to do is to find out if you are responsible for paying your own utility bills. It is uncommon, but some landlords pay the utilities themselves and include the cost in the rent. If your landlord handles the utilities, you should find everything working when you move into your apartment. If he/she does not, you will need to make arrangements to get service and pay the bills by yourself. Gas
There are two common types of gas used in Japan. One is natural gas (city gas or toshi gas), and the other is propane gas (LP gas). When you move into a new place, find out which type of gas is used and call the gas company (again, you should get the information from your realtor). At the scheduled time, the company will send an employee who will check and then activate your gas lines, for which you must be present. If you live in Fujisawa City, City Gas (toshi gas) is provided by Tokyo Gas.
Please keep in mind that not using gas properly is very dangerous. If you notice the smell of gas, turn off the heat and open your windows. Please call the gas company immediately at the exclusive phone number for reporting gas leakages.
You will have water service the moment you move in, but you will have to call the local water company to open a billing account.
Contact your local water company office when you start using water and also if there is any trouble with the service such as not having running water. You must notify them of the date when you wish to start using water. Your realtor will give you the corresponding telephone number or you can call the number written on the right column.
*It is safe to drink directly from tap water in Japan. If a circuit shorts or you use more electricity than the electrical capacity of your residence, the circuit breaker will trip and your electricity supply will be cut automatically. If this happens, reduce the number of electrical appliances you are using before resetting the circuit breaker. Find out the electrical capacity of your residence and try not to use too much electricity at one time. In case of emergency or difficulties, call the electricity company using the phone number written on your electricity bill. Make sure to keep your bills and receipts for reference.
Electronics from your home country may require voltage and plug adapters. Electrical voltage in Japan is 100 volts – 50/60 Hz AC. 50 Hz is common in eastern Japan, including the Yokohama and Fujisawa area, and 60 Hz in the west. The 10 Hz frequency difference does not affect most electrical devices, but you may want to check when it comes to valuable items like computers or cameras. Japanese outlets and plugs come in the two-pronged, North American style, but only in the non-polarized form (prongs are equal sizes). Some North American plugs may require adapters because of this.

Note on Paying Bills

After receiving a calculation notice, electricity, gas, and water bills will be sent to your home. You can pay them and other fees at convenience stores, banks, and post offices. Hand the clerk your bill and the amount due in cash and your payment will be processed. You can pay in the same way at your utility companies’ offices. Please note that if you are behind in your utility payments, the service may be discontinued.
Alternatively, you can arrange for payment via direct debit (ginkō kōza hikiotoshi) from your bank account. Application forms for this service will be sent to you shortly after opening your utility accounts or you can ask each business operator for details. If you do so, the money will automatically be deducted from your account when the bill is due.
To stop your utility services when you leave Japan, notify each of the companies at least one month before you move out of your apartment. You also have to make arrangements if you are moving to another place within Japan. The electric and gas companies will send representatives to shut off your service and issue your final bill. The water company will send you your final bill and close your account.
To learn how to read the bill, please refer to the TEPCO’s website page for an electricity bill.
How to Read your "Electricity Bill" en/ep/payment/notifications-e.html
銀行口座引き落とし (ginkō kōza hikiotoshi) Direct debit


Having a phone number is mandatory to live in Japan. First of all, you are not able to open a bank account, rent an apartment, or go job hunting without one.
However, you do not need to own a landline as long as you have a reachable phone number at your mobile phone / smartphone.
If you want to install a landline in Japan, a telephone subscription right needs to be bought or rented from NTT East. This landline fee costs 36,000 JPY (without tax) plus monthly fee.

Prepaid Phones

Due to past criminal abuse of prepaid phones, phone sellers are required to verify the identity and place of residence of their customers. Typical proof can be in the form of your Residence Card or Certificate of Residence (jumin-hyō).
Prepaid phones start around 2,000 JPY. Credit, which is used for outgoing calls, email, internet etc. depending on what features your phone supports, must be purchased in advance.
At Softbank, for example, you can choose between 3,000 JPY or 5,000 JPY prepaid cards. Whichever you choose, the card will expire after 60 days and not all prepaid phones support mobile internet. Phone numbers remain active as long as you have valid credit in your account, but will expire after three months to a year without use. Credit can be bought at cell phone stores, convenience stores or online, and is typically valid for 60 days from activation.


It is vital for students to set up a reliable internet connection for online learning environment.
There are mainly 4 ways to set up internet at your home.
Fiber-to-the-Home (FTTH or Fiber Optics)
Speed: Fiber optic (FITH) is the fastest and most popular option for home internet connection in Japan. It is able to output 1Gbps. Stability is also quite strong.
Installation: If the hardware is not already installed in your apartment building, you will need to have permission from the property owner to have a line installed.
Cost: Because internet is unbundled in Japan, you need to pay monthly fee to 2 different companies;
1. The physical line providers such as NTT east, au, and softbank
(~5,000 JPY)
2. Internet Service Provider (ISP) (~700 JPY)

There is also a one-time set-up cost for fiber optic. The average set- up cost is about 6,000 JPY but can be as high as 20,000 JPY or more.
Cancellation fee: You will usually be signing a one- to two-year contract when you sign up for fiber optic. If you cancel the contract in the middle of the term, you may need to pay a penalty fee.
How long it takes: two to four weeks.

Cable Television Line (CATV)

It connects to the internet via your cable TV line. This option is not as fast as FITH and it also requires installation.
Cost: monthly fee (~6,500 JPY)
One-time set-up fee for contract handling fee (~3,000 JPY)
One-time installation fee (~5,000 JPY)
ファイバー(hikari-faiba) fiber-to-the-Home
Fiber Optic Line Provider Companies
NTT East Au Hikari lish/internet/ Softbank en/internet/ ISP Companies Asahi Net Broadband Rakuten Premium Spin Net ndexe.html Cable Television J:COM english/ Also, when you leave the apartment, you need to pay contract cancellation fee (~3,500 JPY) plus removal construction fee (~2,000 JPY)

Mobile Router (Wireless Internet)

For mobile Wi-Fi, called Pocket Wi-Fi, even though your speed may be a little slower, its big advantage is that it does not require cable installation. Contracts tend to be simpler and shorter, and a portable Wi-Fi also gives you access to internet on the move.
Cost: monthly fee (~2,726 JPY)
administrative fee (~3,240 JPY)
Cancellation fee: You will usually be signing a two to three-year contract when you sign up for a mobile router. If you cancel the contract in the middle of the term, you need to pay a penalty fee.
Data limt: There’s limit of data. Please check the contract.Battery: you have to carry around the battery which lasts up to 10 hours.
These will require a credit card for payment.

Home Non-Cabled Router (Wireless Internet)

As well as a mobile router, a home non-cabled router does not need a line construction. It may have stronger signal than a mobile router and it can also reach a wider range.
The router itself is larger and often not portable. Please note that the speed may be limited during peak network hours.
Cost: Almost same with a mobile routerData limit: Please check the contract.
These will require a credit card for paymen
UQ communications /english/
Asahi Net
https://asahi- /wimax2plus/

UQ communications /english/
Asahi Net
https://asahi- /wimax2plus/

Furnishing Your Apartment

First of all, it is important to know that most accommodations in Japan will come unfurnished. Even if there is already a small kitchen unit in most apartments, you may need to buy everything from light bulbs and curtains to your own desk, chair and bed. Furnishing an apartment can be difficult at first for this reason, especially for those coming to Japan for the first time. Moreover, most of the online shops (like Amazon, Rakuten, etc.) are either only available in Japanese or only accept credit cards for payments if you buy furniture. Please refer to the following list of places to find furniture, from budget to higher-priced, for your new Japanese home. Recycle Shops – Second-Hand Stores
Japanese second-hand stores are known as “Recycle shops” and can be found in almost every city and are good to buy hefty appliances like fridges, washing machines and microwave ovens. Some will have a sign saying “リサイクル” (Recycle) and there are also franchise recycle shops too like “HARD-OFF’ (primarily electronics and musical instruments) and its sister branch, “BOOK OFF” (books, CDs, DVDs, games).

Earthquake Safety Equipment

We strongly recommend you secure large furniture to the wall as Japan is an earthquake-prone country.
As you are not allowed to put holes into the walls of your room,
special earthquake equipment such as braces which fit between the ceiling and the top of shelving units is suggested (Please check the spring of the brace regularly). Every furniture shop / DYI shop sells earthquake safety items. Please ask store staff for


Like in every other country, moving means a lot of organization.
First, you have to decide if you wish to use a moving company or take the challenge to move everything by yourself.
When using a company, the cheapest times of the year to move are June, October and November. In contrast, you should try to avoid moving in March, April, July, August and the Golden Week, because these are the times when everyone is moving because of company transfers and holidays. Also, some people prefer to move on the weekend so they can unpack before going back to work on Monday. As a result, Fridays and weekends tend to be significantly more expensive and you can get discounts for moving on weekdays. Another way to save money is to move in the afternoon, because a lot of moves finish around 2 or 3 p.m., so if the company can get an extra job in during the day, they will lower the price.
Even if it is time-consuming, you should get multiple estimates. If you mention in front of the company’s agent that you are getting multiple estimates, companies are likely to take that into account in their quotes.
Often you can also get a discount if you are willing to take used boxes.
Tips to Make Your Moving Cheap
• Choose off- season (June, Oc., Nov.)
• Weekdays
• Afternoon
• Multiple estimates
• Take used boxes
How to Find a Moving Company
Moving companies in Japan offer all kind of services from full-service movers where a team of professionals will pack and unpack every single item you own, to customer-assisted moves which have an incredible variety of options, so everyone can find a financially friendly way to move ones’ belongings to another place. Kuroneko Yamato This company offers an all-around service in English and has special discounts for single-moving. Nippon Express (Nittsu)
Nittsu is one of the biggest moving companies.
They also offer services for international moving.
Sakai Moving Service
As a unique feature, Sakai provides customers free 10 mins service after arrival.
They will be able to take orders such as:
Installingearthquakesafetyequipment Cleaning

Procedures to Update Residential Address

Procedures to Update Residential Address
When you decide to move out, there are plenty of things you have to take care of before and after your actual moving date.
•Apartment Contract
If you are living in a private apartment, you should give notice to the landlord at least one month prior to moving out depending on your contract. If you fail to contact them early enough or if you caused major damage to your apartment, the deposit (shikikin) you paid may not be refunded.
•Cancel Utility Services (Gas, Water, and Electricity)
You also have to notify the gas, water, electric power company and the waterworks bureau of the moving-out date and ask the settlement of the account.
If you are moving within Japan, tell them the new address at the same time so that they can start your utility services for your new apartment. Official Registration
If you change your address within the same municipality, you only need to notify your municipality of the change of address. Bring your residence card, my number card, and your new address.
If you move to a different municipality, your current municipality will issue you a “Move out Certificate (転出届, tenshutsu todoke)”. You need to bring it to your new municipal office and report your moving in (転入届, tennyu todoke) within 14 days after you have settled in a residence at a new address in the municipality.
Also, return your NHI card to the municipal office that issued it, and visit the NHI counter at the municipal office of your new residence within 14 days of moving in order to complete the enrollment procedure.
For your pension, visit the Pension Division counter at the new municipal office. Bring your pension book and personal seal. Fill out the form for a change of address. There is no procedure in a municipal office of your old address.
If you leave Japan, fill out the “Application for the Lump-Sum Withdrawal Payments form” and send it along with your blue pension book, residence card, and a photocopy of your passport to the Japan Pension Service. You can get pension refund.
What to Bring to Your Municipal Office of Your Old Address
•Residence Card •My Number Card •Your seal (if any) •New Address
•NHI card
What to Bring to Your Municipal Office of Your New Address
• •Move out Certificate
• •Residence Card
• •My Number Card
• •Your seal (if any)
• •New Address
• •Pension book
転出届 (tenshutsu todoke)
moving out form
転入届 (tennyu todoke) moving in form Bank

Bring your bank card, bank book, and official documents (seal and residence card) to the bank. Visit a counter to change your address.
Contact your credit card company as well.
The post office redirects your mails for up to one year ,but the forwarding address must be in Japan
Fill out the form (転居届, tenkyo todoke) at your local post office to complete it online.

Administrative Procedure

Administrative Procedure

This chapter provides some legal procedures that you need to complete at a municipal office. It is not necessary to book your visit beforehand. It may take 60-120 minutes in total.

Resident Registration-Moving-in Notification

As soon as your new address is determined, please go visit a municipal office. You are required to report an address in Japan to a local ward/municipal office (Jumin-toroku) by submitting a prescribed form (Tennyu-todoke ) within 14 days from the date of arrival. The form is available at the ward/municipal office. If you fail to give notification of your place of residence without a justifiable reason or submit a false notification, your status of residence may be revoked.
After completion of the residency process, your address will be written on the back side of the residence card.
You are also required to report to the local ward/municipal office within 14 days every time you change your address in Japan.

Certificate of Residence

To confirm your resident record, the local ward/municipal office will issue you a Juminhyo, a certificate of resident record, upon request. You might be asked to present or submit a Juminhyo when you make a contract for a mobile phone or open a bank account. It generally costs 300yen (fee varies depending on areas) to have
a Juminhyo issued.

What to Bring to Your Municipal Office

•Residence Card •Passport
•New Address
住民登録(Jumin- toroku)
resident registration
転入届(Tennyu- todoke)
moving-in notification
住民票(jumin-hyō) Certificate of Resident record

Certificate of Residence

To confirm your resident record, the local ward/municipal office will issue you a Juminhyo, a certificate of resident record, upon request. You might be asked to present or submit a Juminhyo when you make a contract for a mobile phone or open a bank account. It generally costs 300yen (fee varies depending on areas) to have
a Juminhyo issued.

National Health Insurance

National Health Insurance (NHI)—kokumin kenko hoken, often abbreviated as Kokuho in Japanese—is one of the health insurance systems in Japan that allows the insured to receive medical care without financial concern when ill or injured by splitting the medical care expenses between the local or national government and the insured.
Full-time international students who will be studying in Japan for more than three months must join NHI unless covered by an insurance plan of a family member who lives in Japan. Overseas medical insurance is not accepted.
With NHI, approximately 70% of your medical expenses will be covered when you receive treatment at hospitals or clinics that are NHI medical service providers (most hospitals in Japan accept NHI). You pay the remaining 30%.
Please note that National Health Insurance does not cover expenses for cosmetic surgery, orthodontics, or normal childbirth.

How to Enroll in National Health Insurance (NHI)

When you register your address at the municipal office, you’ll be
guided to No fee is charged when you join. The insurance card will be sent to
enroll in NHI.
No fee is charged when you join. The insurance card will be sent to
You home later, but a National Health Insurance Certificate can be issued on the same day upon your request.
When you receive your NHI card, check if there are any mistakes in the description and be sure to present it at the reception whenever you see a doctor.
Lending your NHI card to someone else is punishable by law. Duplicated or expired NHI cards are invalid.

Payment of Insurance Premiums

Japanese National Health Insurance Premiums amount is determined by the municipal office based on income of previous year. If the NHI recognizes that your income is below a certain amount, a reduction to your insurance premiums will be applied (scholarships are not counted as income).
Please pick up an Income Declaration for National Health Insurance form (“kokumin kenko hokenryo shinkokusho”) at the NHI counter, fill it out, and submit it with the application for NHI.
If you do not submit your declaration form, you may be charged with the highest monthly insurance premiums.
From the following year, the form will be sent to your home address.
Please note that insurance tax (premium) must be paid starting from the month you became eligible, not from the month you are notified of enrollment. You will be required to pay dating back to the month you actually enrolled. You will also be required to bear full medical expenses during the time you do not have NHI, unless you have a specific reason. For this reason, we recommend that you purchase foreign or travel health insurance while you are still in your country for the first days after your arrival.
For more information, please contact the NHI counter at your local city office.

National Pension

The National Pension is a public pension system participated in by all persons aged 20 to 59 years. It provides “Basic Pension” benefits for those affected by old age, disability, or death.
Regardless of nationality, all registered residents of Japan aged 20 to 59 years are obliged to enroll in the National Pension System.
If you are 20 years of age or older when you enter Japan: After completing resident registration, you need to register/enroll at the municipal office or Japan Pension Service branch office of the area where you reside.
If you are 19 years of age or younger when you enter Japan: You do not need to do anything at your resident registration. You will receive a “report of acquisition of qualifications for National Pension System” (kokumin nen-kin hihokenha shikaku shutoku todokesho) one month before you become 20 years old. You register/enroll at the municipal office.
Approximately one month after enrolling, they will send you a blue Pension Handbook and National Pension Contribution Payment Slip. Please keep your Pension Handbook in a safe place It will be required if you live or work in Japan in the future. Save it and do not throw it away.
国民年金(kokumin nen- kin)
National Pension
国民年金被保険者資格 取得届書(kokumin nen- kin hihokenha shikaku shutoku todokesho) Report of Acquisition of Qualifications for National Pension System

National Pension Payment Exemption

The contribution amount for the National Pension is \16,540/month
(for the fiscal year 2021)
For students aged 20 or older who have little income and have difficulty paying the contribution, there is a Special Payment System for Students under which they are exempt from making payments.
(gakuei nofu tokuri seido)
special payment system for students
To establish the exemption, you need to apply at the municipal office
where you reside and register. The application form is available at the
Japan Pension System branch offices.
Please note that you must apply for the Special Payment System for Students anew every year.

Individual Number (My Number)

The Individual Number (My Number) is used in these three areas;
social insurance, tax, and disaster countermeasures within Japan. You
will be provided a 12 digit My Number when you create a resident
certificate for the first time after your arrival in Japan.
After you have completed resident registration, the notification for My
Number will be sent to your address by simplified registered mail. (It
will take 2-3 weeks to reach your address.)
Enclosed in the envelope are the “Notification Card for My Number (Notification Card)” , “Application Form for the Individual Number Card, a return envelope to submit the application form, and an instruction booklet.
The “Notification Card” is made of paper and it shows the 12 digit My
Number in the front. It looks like an ID card, but this paper card
cannot be used as an identification document.
Please fill out and submit the Application Form to apply for a plastic
My Number card with photo and an IC chip.
When you lose your Notification Card (a paper card) or Individual
Number Card (a plastic card), please report immediately to a police
Station and a municipal office.
Also, please call the toll-free number in the right column to suspend
the card’s function.
Do not give your My Number to others without good reason.
Each individual has their own My Number, and generally you will be
using the same number for the rest of your life. Even if you leave
Japan once and return again, you will use the same
number when you make a resident certificate. The number cannot be
changed freely.
It is prohibited to give your My Number to
others, or to write down the My Number of others. In case you were
asked to give your My Number, be sure to check the person and
their purpose of use, and be careful not to allow others to abuse
your My Number. My Number General Toll Free(toll free service)
Multilingual Service
☎0120-0178-27 個人番号(マイナンバ ー)(kojin bango) individual number (my number)

Opening a Bank Account

Opening a Bank Account

Opening a bank account as early as possible after arriving in Japan is recommended since most scholarship payments will be made via direct deposit.
You will probably create a general account (futsu yokin) which is convenient, however interest is low.
Most bills can be paid automatically if you request and fill out the appropriate forms.
Generally, you will need your resident card, your student ID card and a personal name seal (inkan, if you have one) to open an account. Confirm in advance as requirements differ according to financial institutions.
At some banks, your period of stay must be over 6 months to open an account.
Please check with the bank in advance for detailed information.
When you are at the bank, you need to fill in the Application Form with:
•Your Name •Address •(Japanese) Phone Number •Date of Birth •Password After completing the paperwork, you will receive a bank book (tsucho) that day and a cash card (kyasshu kado) is sent to the address of the account holder approximately one week later. 通帳(tsucho) a bank book キャッシュカード (kyasshu kado) a cash card

Which Bank to Choose?

Banks in Japan primarily consist of major city banks such as Mizuho Bank, Bank of Mitsubishi UFJ, and Mitsui Sumitomo—that have head offices in large cities like Tokyo and branch offices across the nation—and regional banks including Suruga Bank or Bank of Yokohama, that provide financial services in specified prefectures or regions in the country.
There are many banks in Japan.
Japan Post Bank
ゆうちょ銀行 dex.html
Mizuho Bank
http://www.mizuhobank. com/index.html
Bank of Mitsubishi UFJ
三菱 UFJ 銀行 lobal/?link_id=p_top_he ad_global
Sumitomo Mitsui Bank
住友三井銀行 lobal/

Bank Services

Banking services including deposits and savings, direct payment for utility bills, automatic debit transfer for credit cards, remittance, etc. are all handled at banks and post offices (yucho ginko). If you wish to send money home or overseas, you should consult with your bank about the options you have, since each financial institution varies in commission fees and handles services differently. For conducting domestic and overseas remittance that amounts to more than 100,000 JPY, a form of personal ID (residence card, health insurance card, etc.) is required.
When making a cash withdrawal at a bank counter, you will need the personal seal that you registered with when you opened your account or give them your signature if you did not use one. If using a bank card, cash can be withdrawn from ATMs or cash dispensers, but be aware that there may be a limit to the number of withdrawals and the amount that can be withdrawn per day. Banks are normally open 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m., and are usually closed on weekends and holidays.
As each financial institution has different service hours and fees at their branches and ATMs, please check their websites for more detailed information.

Foreign Currency Exchange

Although you can exchange foreign currency at major banks and post offices, depending on the type of currency you are seeking, some outlets may not have it in stock and may not be able to exchange it for you right away. It is strongly recommended that you visit on of the major branches of your bank when seeking a variety of foreign currencies. When exchanging a large sum or minor currency, contact a local financial institution to find out whether such exchange is possible. 口座開設(koza kaisetsu) opening a bank account
預け入れ(azukeire) Deposit
振替(furikae) Transfer 通帳記入(tsucho kinyu)
Update Passbook
引き出し(hikidashi) Withdrawal
振込み(furikomi) Remittance
残高照会(zandaka shokai ) Checking Balance 残高照会後お引き出し (zandaka shokaigo ohikidashi) Withdrawal After Checking Balance
両替え(ryogae) Exchange
海外送金(kaigai sokin) overseas remittance
手数料(tesuryo) handling charge

Credit Card

Credit Card

Getting a credit card as a foreigner in Japan may be very difficult— especially for students who are still underage, have not lived in Japan for a long time and do not speak Japanese. However, you can consult with your financial institution on whether they will offer you a card, or try other possibilities—e.g., retailers, the post office, department stores, or online services. Even if you are rejected at first, some can get a card when they try again after one year of living in Japan.
Keio University also offers different credit card services. Information on these cards can be found in the Alpha bldg. of SFC.
Items required when applying for a credit card
•Bank account
•Address •Mobile phone or fixed-line phone •Resident card •Parents’ consent for students under 20 years old

Mobile Phone Contract

Mobile Phone Contract

The biggest Japanese mobile phone companies are NTT docomo, au,
Softbank and Rakuten Mobile. There are also several smaller
companies which provide low-cost cell phone plans, but they typically
use the networks of the big four companies.
To purchase a mobile phone with a contract, your residence card are required to enroll into a subscription plan. You pay for your phone usage at the end of a monthly billing cycle. Handsets can be purchased in full or in monthly installments. If you wish to make direct payments from your bank account, also present your bank book (通帳 tsucho) and personal seal if you used one on your bank documents. Otherwise, you have to present your credit card which must be under the contractor’s name. Please note that if you have a one-year-residence status, you may not be able to pay the cost of the phone each month and then the amount you are calling and using data for on top of that, but have to pay cash up front for the phone. You have to bring 20,000-80,000 JPY to purchase a phone depending on the model you want to buy.

Parental Consent Form

Persons under the age of 20 must bring a parental consent form filled out by the legal guardian and the identification documents of the legal guardian such as a passport copy including the passport number, name, date of birth and current address if there is one in the passport or certificate of residence. NTT docomo, au, Softbank have shops close to Shonandai station.
What to Bring When Purchasing a Mobile Phone with a Contract
• •Residence card
• •Passport
• •Bank book
• •Personal Seal
• •Parental Consent
1. Form (for students under 20 yrs old) Letter of Consent Downloads NTT docomo /english/support/procedure/ document/form_download/i ndex.html
Softbank obile/shop/buy/id/
AU h/support/contract/
Please download the parental consent form from each phone companies’ websites from the right column.
The details of the contract can be filled out afterwards.

SIM Cards

If you want to use a smart phone from your country with a SIM card that you purchase here in Japan, you have to present a credit card that is under the same name as the contractor. Since the credit cards from overseas are sometimesrejected, you may not want to choose a SIM card for a smart phone in Japan right after arriving.

Daily Life


Life in a foreign country with different culture and habits can be challenging, but a wonderful experience. This chapter provides some useful information for living in Japan. The currency in Japan is the yen (JPY).
The yen notes are divided into 4 bills: ¥1,000, ¥2,000, ¥5,000, ¥10,000. On the other hand, yen coins are divided into 6: ¥1, ¥5, ¥10, ¥50, ¥100, ¥500.
Even though it is finally becoming cashless society, there are still lots of shops which only take cash, especially outside of Tokyo. You do need to carry certain amount of cash all the time.

Consumption Tax

The Consumption tax rate in Japan is 10%, except for food stuffs which is 8%. The 10% consumption tax is applied when you eat and/or drink at the eating space of suppliers like fast food chains, convenience stores and others. Price tags have to include the Consumption tax amount.


Tipping is not customary in Japan. In fact, it can be considered rude and insulting in many situations. If you leave the money at a restaurant table, they will run after you to return the “forgotten” money. 円(en) Japanese yen
消費税(shouhi-zei) consumption tax

Living Expenses in Japan

Monthly living expenses in Japan for a student from overseas (including tuition) on average nationwide comes to about 138,000 yen. The most expensive region is the Kanto region at 151,000 yen. The Kanto region includes Tokyo, where the monthly living expenses average 154,000 yen.

Free public Wi-Fi in Japan

Free public Wi-Fi networks in Japan are provided by big cities, but are sparse in the countryside and mountainous regions.
While it’s increasing the numbers of Wi-Fi hot spots, there are still not enough free Wi-Fi services available to rely on for the regular usage.
Following facilities provide free Wi-Fi service. Some require pre- registration via the service’s website.
International airports (Narita, Haneda)
Some cafes/restaurants (Starbucks, McDonald’s, etc.) JR and subway stations in big cities
Shopping malls (lala port, etc.)
Supermarket (Ito Yokado, etc.)
List of Japan Connected-free Wi-Fi Hot Spots tml

Postal Service/Takuhaibin

Japan Post, one of the main delivery services in Japan, provides a range of postal services including the delivery of postcards, letters, parcels, and registered mail, as well as banking and insurance services.
Takuhaibin Delivery Services are convenient for sending parcels, luggage, and various other types of goods from door to door nationwide.
You can send takuhaibin any time of a day from any convenience stores while post offices are only open from 9:00 to 17:00 on weekdays (Few big post offices are open on Saturdays). Though, only Japan post is handling international mails.
Delivery is usually made by the next day, and costs are moderate. You will receive mail and packages through either Japan Post or Takuhaibin Delivery Services once you start to live in Japan. Except for standard mail, if you are not at home during a delivery, a delivery notice slip will be left in your mailbox. You should check your mailbox regularly, and if you find a notice slip, contact the designated phone number or access the website to schedule a redelivery. Instructions on how to schedule a redelivery are usually written on the slip. The delivery companies usually keep your item for 1 to 2 weeks before it is returned to the sender due to no redelivery request made. Takuhaibin delivery service is useful when you want to send your big suitcases from the airport to your apartment/dormitory or send your snowboard to a mountain hotel. You can even use takuhaibin service for your moving unless you have lots of belongings. For international mail service, you have EMS from Japan Post, DHL, and FedEX.
Postal Service
Japan Post
Nippon Express
Yamato Transport
Sagawa Express

How to Pay the Bus Fee

The bus fee can be paid by cash or by electric payments.
If you pay the fee in cash, it is highly recommended that you have the exact fare ready before boarding the bus. You will not get any change back if you drop more than your fare into the fare box. You can also change 1,000 JPY bill, 500 JPY coin and 100 JPY coin into smaller denominations by putting them in the change machine next to the fare box. Please change the money before you drop it in the fare box.
If you pay the fee by electric payments, please obtain an IC card; Pasmo or Suica. They are rechargeable prepaid rail cards. Prepaid cards are sold at ticket vending machines in train stations. A 500 JPY deposit will be deducted from the cash amount you charge the card with. (You can get this money back when you return the card to a ticket office)
When using prepaid cards on a bus, you should swipe it over a contactless reader when boarding/disembarking. You can top up the card at the ticket vending machines in train stations, but bus drivers can also help you top up the card.
Whether you pay the bus fee at boarding or at disembarking depends on a bus. (Shonandai area). Please check with the driver or ask other passengers when to pay.

Traffic Rules for Bicycles

• Use roadways in principle. Riding on sidewalks is allowed only in exceptional cases.
• Keep to the left on roadways.
• On sidewalks, pedestrians have the right-of-way. Slow down and
keep to the side closest to the roadway.
• Do not ride under the influence of alcohol.
• Do not carry a passenger.
• Do not ride side-by-side.
• Use your front light after dark.
• Do not ride bicycles that are not equipped with a font light or

Part-Time Jobs

Many foreign students wish to work part-time in order to pay their tuition or living expenses. However, under the status of residence of “Student,” which is given to all international students, they are originally allowed to reside in Japan only for the purpose of studying at school. Therefore, if anyone resides in Japan with the status of “Student” and still wishes to take a paid part-time job, the person is required to obtain an official permission called “Permit to Engage in Activity other than that Permitted by the Status of Residence Previously Granted” from the nearest regional immigration bureau.
l immigration bureau.

Paid Internships

If you intend to pursue a paid internship, it is necessary to obtain a permit from the Immigration Bureau to engage in part-time work. The allowed working hours are the same as for part-time jobs. Before you start your internship, it is your responsibility to check in advance about the duration of the internship and whether you will be compensated. If you will not receive compensation for the internship, you do not need to apply for this permit.

How to Find a Part-Time Job

How easy it will be to find a part-time job largely depends on your language ability and what kind of job you wish to do. If you have some proficiency in Japanese, it can be easy to find a job as a translator, or at a restaurant or in another position with customer services, which offer the opportunity to improve your Japanese and get a sense of Japanese work ethic. However, language cafes or places frequently visited by international customers often also hire international staff without Japanese language skills.
Another popular part-time job is language teaching, either private students or helping out at elementary schools.

Job Search Sites

Gaijinpot: https://jobs.gaijinpot.c om/index/index/lang/en
Craigslist Job@chikyujin
Tokyo Notice Board
http://www.tokyonotic Tokyo Metropolitan Labor Consultation Center Offices
http://www.hataraku.m c/center/e/index.html
Disputes at Part-Time Jobs
Consultation services are provided regarding work related issues such as labor contract, conditions, paid holidays, working hours and etc.


Besides fine-dining restaurants and cafes, you can eat out at casual- dining restaurants including fast food chain restaurants.
Fast food chain restaurants have wide varieties from ramen to hamburgers, from gyudon to conveyor belt sushi.
Family restaurants are popular among students as well.
Also, you can buy small snack such as lunch box, sandwiches, and onigiri at any convenience store.


Cheapest way of eating food is always cooking by yourself. Buying foods from supermarkets are economical. Wholesale markets are known even cheaper than ordinary supermarkets.
Don’t forget to take your shopping bag as they started to charge you plastic bags from July 2020.
Common tip: fresh and cooked items are often marked down by 10- 70% near the closing time of supermarkets.

Vegetarian Food

Finding vegetarian food in Japan can be difficult as the cultural understanding of vegetarian is loose.
Most of the restaurants do not have vegetarian menus unless you choose special vegetarian restaurants (relatively expensive). Restaurant staffs will happily remove meat from your plates if you ask, but they may forget that “dashi” (soup stock) is made of fish.
Please use the vocabularies on the right to ask staff to adjust your plate.
Try using a search engine for vegan and vegetarian restaurants as well.

Halal Food

Halal food might be much harder to find than vegetarian food. There was a case a young waiter served a bacon sandwich to a customer who asked for halal food. (It did not occur to him that bacons are pork.)


Garbage (gomi) disposal is carried out at the municipal level. Please check with your landlord or your dormitory manager for the local garbage rules.
You are expected to observe all rules and regulations concerning garbage disposal and recycling in your city.
Roughly speaking, there are three broad categories of garbage for disposal purposes:
Non-combustibletrash(metals,glass,porcelain,rubberproducts,etc) Recyclabletrash(plastic,paper,bins,cans,magazines,etc.)
Each category is collected separately on a designated day. Usually, you are supposed to put garbage in certain space to avoid crows and cats.
For oversized garbage (sodai gomi), like furniture, bedding, home appliances, municipalities have different ways of collecting it. In some places, certain days are set for collecting oversized garbage. In other places, you need to notify the municipal administrative office in advance, and then dispose of the garbage on the assigned day. There are also some places that require you to pay collection fees in advance. Collection fees may vary according to the size and kind of garbage. Therefore, please confirm with the municipality or sanitation office on how to dispose of oversized garbage. Please note that the following seven appliances are not considered oversized garbage:
air conditioners, televisions, refrigerators, freezers, washing machines, clothes dryers and computers.
可燃ゴミ(kanen gomi) combustible trash
不燃ゴミ(funen gomi) non-combustible trash
リサイクルゴミ (risaikuru gomi) recyclable trash
粗大ゴミ(sodai gomi) oversized trash


Emergency Contacts

110 for Police 警察(keisatsu)
119 for Ambulance or Fire 救急/消防(kyu-kyu/sho bo)
If you have been robbed or had valuable belongings stolen, dial 110.
Toll-free. No area code is necessary.
Tell the operator your name, address, the location of the accident or incident, and what happened.
Or contact a nearby koban. Koban, police box, are located in all Japanese towns and cities. Most of them are near train stations.
You will be asked to submit a theft report. Clearly state your name and address and report the incident.
If your bank card or credit card was stolen, notify the bank or credit card company immediately so they can prevent any unauthorized transactions. It is important to keep your PIN separate from these cards and not to share it with others. 交番(koban) police box
盗難届(tonan todoke) a theft report
泥棒(doroboo) a theft Traffic Accidents
If you happen to be involved in a traffic accident, contact the police immediately by dialing 110. If anyone has been injured or wounded, dial 119 for an ambulance. Even if you believe you only have a minor injury, some injuries may become more serious with time. Do not try and evaluate yourself and tell people you are fine.
Consult a doctor as soon as possible, as the onset of pain may be delayed or there may be other complications later on.
Always record the names and addresses of the other parties involved, including the car owner, even if there is so little damage that you do not need to call the police. Record the license plate numbers of all vehicles involved. You might also want to record the names and addresses of witnesses who happened to be there. You may need this information to verify the accident with the insurance company.
交通事故(kotsu jiko) traffic accidents
火事(kaji) fire
Japanese Phrases for Emergency Calls
The following Japanese phrases may be helpful:
Make sure you stay at the site. Don't go anywhere while calling or after the call. Don't switch off your phone after the call when calling "110" or “119” from your mobile phone.
Sudden Illness/Serious Injury
If you have been injured or suddenly feel ill (especially during night hours), call 119.
If you can move, prepare the following items while you are waiting for an ambulance car for 3-5 mins.
•National Health Insurance card
•Your ID (Residence card/student card) •Cash (~20,000JPY)
•Your mobile phone and its charger
•Medical record (if any)
•*Shoes and changes
*If you call an ambulance in midnight from your bed, they will take you to the hospital directly from your bed. It means you will be left in pajamas without shoes at the hospital after the treatment.
An ambulance staff will ask you your emergency contact in Japan. You can tell your guar あ antor’s name or your friend’s name. If you don’t have any to provide, tell them to call Keio SFC student life section. Natural Disasters
Japan is prone to earthquakes (jishin) and you should be prepared for when one happens.
If you are indoors: Strong tremors usually continue for only about one minute. Do not rush outside in a panic; it is safer to stay inside than rush outside.
1) Protect yourself: Quickly duck under a sturdy table or desk to protect yourself from falling objects. If there is nothing to hide under, protect your head with a cushion or book. It may be wise to move to a room with less furniture.
2) Secure a safe exit: Doors and windows may not open due to distortion from strong tremors, so you may end up trapped in a room. During a strong earthquake, open a door or window to secure a way out if it is safe to do so.
3) Put out any flames: In case of major tremors, put out any flames after the shaking subsides. Make sure to close all gas valves even if there is no fire. To avoid a fire after electricity is restored, switch off the circuit breakers and any appliances.
4) Be aware of aftershocks: There may be aftershocks after a big
earthquake, so be cautious around objects such as drawers, bookshelves, and refrigerators that are tilting or may be unstable. They may fall over during an aftershock. Turn on a radio to listen to the Emergency Broadcast System and follow instructions. Avoid using the telephone if a large number of homes in your area have been affected by a disaster. Emergency responders need to have the telephone lines available to coordinate their response.
If you are outdoors: Stay away from narrow streets, garden walls, cliffs, and riverbanks. Beware of falling objects if you are near buildings. Protect your head (by holding something like a bag over your head if you are carrying one) and quickly flee to a safe area.
Daily Countermeasures
Relation with neighbors
Have face-to-face relationships with neighbors in order to mutually assist in the event of a disaster.
Prevent fall of furniture
Secure furniture with seismic brackets or other devices that prevent furniture from tipping over. Also, it is recommended to put window films on glass windows to prevent broken glass from flying. (You need to ask approval from the owner of your apartment.)
Locate evacuation facility and wide-area evacuation site
Make sure you know the location of the emergency exit of your apartment along with public evacuation areas and shelters (hinan basho--usually parks or schoolyards) closest to your home and university.
An evacuation map will be given to you when you register your address at a municipal office.
避難場所(hinan basho) evacuation areas and
Prepare Emergency Pack
In case of an emergency, ensure that you have a disaster preparedness kit including the following items:
• •first-aid kit
• •bottled water for a week
• •canned or packaged foods (with can opener) for a week
• •portable radio (with working batteries)
• •flashlight, spare batteries
• •copy of your ID card/passport/national health insurance card
• •cash (including coins)
• •savings passbook
• •medicine
• •list of emergency contact
• •towels/wet wipes/tissues/sanitary items
• •rain gear
• •pens
• •phone charger
• •glasses (for those using contact lenses)
• •a helmet
• •thick cotton gloves
• •sports shoes (roads might be full of debris or broken glass)
• •plastic bags for garbage
• •plastic container (you can keep water in the container when
water is distributed.)
• •survival blanket (you may spend few weeks on the floor of a
• •a whistle (It will let responders know you need help and lead them to
you even if you are under a building and can’t shout for a help.) You can also purchase a full-set kit. Tsunami
Ensure that you evacuate immediately if you feel a strong earthquake when you are on the coast.
A tsunami may be coming within minutes. Move quickly to higher ground away from the coast, at least ten meters above sea level, or if possible move at least one kilometer away from all beaches and the water's edge of harbors and coastal estuaries. Do not take cars for evacuation.
When the tsunami warning is announced, a siren sounds and orange flags will be displayed in the beach area.
If you cannot leave the area, take shelter in the upper story of a concrete multi-story building or tsunami evacuation towers built along the beach line.
Please check the evacuation buildings along the coast line beforehand. For example, the rooftop of Enoshima aquarium is an evacuation point (15m above sea level).
Some utility pole in coast area has a signboard indicating the height above the sea level.
If you happen to be in Enoshima island at the time of earthquake, do not try to go back to the mainland. Go up to the top of the island. (60m above sea level) The island is made of hard rocks and it’s safe staying at the top.
Tune into your emergency broadcasters for information.
津波(tsunami) tidal wave/tsunami Latest Tsunami Information by the Japan Meteorological Agency bosai/map.html#5/37. 979/135/&elem=warn &contents=tsunami&l ang=en
A typhoon is a large tropical cyclone also known as a hurricane. To prepare for a typhoon you should keep yourself informed on its progress and take precautions to minimize any problems that may arise:
Besides TV or the Internet, you can listen to Inter-FM at 76.1 or JOKN AM at 810 for information in English.
Secure or move outdoor items inside. Make sure the potted plants and laundry poles are not to be blown by the wind.
If the storm becomes severe, move to an area with the least exposure to external glass windows.
Make sure not to approach places which you think are dangerous such as beaches, rivers, steep slopes, underpasses.
Typhoons have "eyes," areas in their center where the weather appears calm. If the eye passes over your area, it may appear that the storm has finished, with winds then picking up again afterwards.
J-Alert System (Nationwide Warning System)
J-Alert is a nationwide alert system. If the government of Japan deems that there is an urgency to protect the lives, bodies, and property of the people, such as from a North Korean missile threat, it will issue warnings and promptly notify prefectural governors. If it is necessary to evacuate residents, the government will instruct prefectural governors to take evacuation measures. The prefectural governors will then announce warnings and issue evacuation instructions, and communicate information to residents through publicity vehicles of the municipal government.
on civil protection, such as radio networks and satellite communication.
Civil Protection Portal Site by Cabinet Secretariat
http://www.kokuminhog index_e.html
Based on the Civil Protection Law, the national and local government will also occasionally implement drills for civil protection, such as those concerning evacuation and relief measures. Please access the link for more detailed information on J-ALERT.
In the situation of an armed attack etc., it is critical that information is communicated promptly and convincingly. For this reason, the government has secured multiple means to communicate information.
Protecting http://www.kokuminho
Japanese Ministries
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Measures in operation for Entry/Re-entry/Return to Japan. Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare

Covid-19 Information

Japanese Ministries

Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Measures in operation for Entry/Re-entry/Return to Japan.
Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare
border control measures
the place to stay
the means of transportation and some other information.
Ministry of Justice
Notice on Covid-19 vaccination
Information about medical services
Immigration Services Agency
Applications for residency during Covid-19
Daily life support for foreign residents in regards to Covid-19 Entry from overseas
Immigration Services Agency online applications
And some other information.
Cabinet Office
Evacuation points under Covid-19 crisis.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs ca/fna/page22e_000921. html
Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare content/000802098.pdf
As of July 6
Ministry of Justice N/index.html
Immigration Services Agency
Cabinet Office



The COVID-19 vaccine will be administered sequentially to healthcare workers, the elderly, and those with underlying medical conditions. Please be patient and wait until your turn comes.
Although it is possible that there will be a short waiting period, all those who wish to receive the vaccine will be able to receive it in due course.
The vaccine should be administered in the city, town, or village where your residency is registered (place of residence), except if you are hospitalized or admitted to a facility.
The vaccination is free of charge.
Vaccination Process
1 Your municipal office will send you a notice, a coupon, and a list of medical institutions in your town.
The enclosed coupons are for two inoculation certificates or vaccination certificates. Bring this form with you each time, and please do not cut them off.
2 Make an appointment directly with a medical institution from the list enclosed.
3 Bring a coupon and an ID to the clinic on the appointed date/time.
Please measure your body temperature at home before the vaccine and refrain from getting the vaccine and contact the municipal office or medical institution where you made the appointment if you have an obvious fever or do not feel well.
4 In order to get the full effect of the vaccine, it is necessary to receive two doses of the same type of vaccine at a set interval. When you receive the first dose, please check when you should receive the next vaccination.
ワクチン(wakutchin) vaccination
Fujisawa-city will complete sending out coupons within July 2021. For the students who will move in the city after July, please remind the city hall/center staff you need coupons for vaccination at your residence registration.