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How to get a visa debit card? 2005/12/29 02:56
I need a VISA Debit Card for online shopping. I want to open a bank account in any bank in Japan that would issue a VISA Debit Card without any problem with my new account with them. Any information would be highly appreciated.

by John  

... 2005/12/29 15:22
To John,
Japanese banking and card business are quite different from, let's say those in USA and other countries, so let me give it a try to explain....

- "Visa Debit" is not a common card type offered by card issuing companies in Japan. For online shopping I think that what you would need to get is a Visa Credit card. (As "debit" product, there is "J-Debit" in Japan, which comes with the ATM card of many Japanese banks, but as those require PIN code entry at shops, I don't know if those are accepted as payment at online shops.)

- In Japan, credit cards function almost like "deferred debit" cards, in the sense that you use it to shop, then the amount gets (one or two months later) automatically deducted from your bank account that you register with. Of course you can revolve too, but it is NOT that you receive the credit card bills sent to you at the end of the month and pay with a personal check (which is the case in US, for example). So consider Japanese credit cards as ALMOST like a debit card.

- Another difference about Japan is that traditionally it has not been banks who issue cards, but separate card-issuing companies, who may be bank's subsidiaries (this is due to regulation that was lifted a few years ago, which banned banks from doing credit card business). Even though by now this regulation has been lifted and some banks are doing card business, it is not YET very common.

So of course, you can go ask at a bank if they can issue credit card with the account, but my experience so far is that banks, when you open an
account with them and start with a somewhat low balance, unless they see your monthly salary amount and other papers, are not very happy to issue credit cards. (Others please correct me if i'm wrong on this.)

Instead, you can go in two steps (1) getting a bank account, then (2) getting a credit card for online shopping.

(1) To open an bank account, you can go to any bank, as it suits you; meaning, people have been writing in on this forum about different features
of different banks (search with "bank" on this forum), like convenient locations or low fee for remittance, etc., so you can choose according to that, and also depending on the place you live, pick a bank that is convenient.

(2) And to get a credit card, you can go to places like Credit Saison (at Seibu department stores) or Tobu Credit (Tobu department store), even Japan Railway (they offer SUICA credit card), etc. a whole bunch of card issuing companies that are NOT banks. If there is a department store nearby where you live and where you shop often, then department store cards WITH Visa credit function might come in handy.
by AK rate this post as useful

To AK 2005/12/29 23:54
Hi AK,
Thank you very much for your detail reply. I have tried many times to get a credit card in department stores such as Daiei, but got refused. As I am a student with no apparent income, there is a very little chance for me to get a credit card. Thats why I wanted to get a Debit card to use it online. However, thanks a lot for your reply.

by John rate this post as useful

Whoops 2005/12/30 13:07
Sorry if I explained in detail what you already knew; seeing that you were looking for Visa *debit,* I'd assumed that you might be new to Japan and might not be aware that those cards weren't issued here.

Another option... maybe you could inquire with Citibank group (I think the card company name is Citi Cards Japan) for their student credit card? Not that I recommend that bank, but "Citi Clear Card" or "Citi Student Card" seem to be targeted at students... other companies do provide student cards, but some (particularly those by traditional Japanese companies) tend to assume applicants who are 20, 21 and about to graduate from a Japanese university. In any case, I'll post again if I see some other card advertised that might help you.
by AK rate this post as useful

yucho check card 2006/1/4 21:45
The only card resembling a "VISA Debit Card" that I've seen in Japan is the "Yucho Check Card", a "joint card" issued by Saison. It works as a kind of "prepaid VISA card" in conjunction with your Postal Savings account.

by anon rate this post as useful

Japan Credit Card for US Resident 2006/1/12 07:41
OK, What about a credit card issued by a cc company in Japan to someone that lives in the United States (because I want to be able to use the Japan iTunes store, and need a Japan credit card to do so)? Is this possible to anyone's knowledge?
by Randy Farnsworth rate this post as useful

Hmm 2006/1/12 14:02
I should think that EXTREMELY unlikely - how could they get their money back if you defaulted, for one thing?
by Sutefu rate this post as useful

... 2006/1/12 15:17
you can get a credit card easily from a post office. you need to open an account with them - you need only your gaijin card and you can apply later for a credit card. strongly advise to do that!
by amy rate this post as useful

Well it depends 2006/1/12 15:50
OK, What about a credit card issued by a cc company in Japan to someone that lives in the United States (because I want to be able to use the Japan iTunes store, and need a Japan credit card to do so)? Is this possible to anyone's knowledge?

If you live in certain US states you can apply for a JCB card via JCB USA, as you know JCB is a major credit card company in Japan and their USA card is fully compatable.

by .. rate this post as useful

Bummer 2006/1/13 04:02
Unfortunately, I'm in Utah, not one of the states listed. Actually, I may have discovered a different method -- I can have a friend in Japan buy me a gift card from the Japan iTunes store, then I can use that to get music. Hmmm, maybe this will work after all.
by Randy Farnsworth rate this post as useful

To Anon 2006/1/20 18:04
"The only card resembling a "VISA Debit Card" that I've seen in Japan is the "Yucho Check Card", a "joint card" issued by Saison. It works as a kind of "prepaid VISA card" in conjunction with your Postal Savings account.

Thank you so much Anon for the useful information. I was actually looking for this type of opportunity. I have received the application form and applied for the card, lets see what they say.

Thanks again!

by John rate this post as useful

Anon, Thank you so much! 2006/2/12 13:01
Hi Anon,
Thank you so very much! I have already received the VISA check card and it is working nicely.

Thanks again.
by John rate this post as useful

American Debit/Credit Card in Japan 2006/2/20 11:45
Hello, I have a problem. I have a credit card already but just like everyone else I am buying stuff on the internet. My problem is that some american webstore only accepts a US Based credit card and because of this I am sometimes unable to buy the things I want to buy. By any chance do you guys know any company providing a debit card or credit card in Japan that is a US Based credit card?
by Joey Misa rate this post as useful

.. 2006/2/20 12:55
There's two things,
The vast majority of credit card companies, Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Diners Club are based in the US.

Are the websites requiring a US Address you mean?

by .. rate this post as useful

Thanks for the reply 2006/2/21 10:14
What I mean is that some websites won't accept a Japanese based credit card to process the transaction. for example http://www.lingo.com they provide unlimited call but only accepts American based credit card. I have tried to use my Japanese based credit card to order but it keeps on presenting me with an error that it can't process the request. I then called Lingo and they are asking me if I have a US based credit card, that's when I realised that I have a problem. With regards to the US Address, I have no problems with that because my brother in law is in New Jersey and everytime I buy something off the net which requires U.S address I use his address..
Going back to my question. Is there a US Based Debit/Credit card here in Japan that I would be able to use for buying the unlimited phone adapter? Thanks for the help!
by Joey Misa rate this post as useful

... 2006/2/21 10:31
I guess when they say "US based," they mean "issued by an US bank/card issuing company," thus "associated with an US bank account." ...So I guess that service is intended for US residents, and the service provider never thought about the possibility that some people holding card issued by entities in another country might apply for that. If you want to try to get such a card from Japan, you might want to approach Citibank in Japan, explaining the situation and asking if cards issued by Citibank in Japan would be *considered* US-based or not?
by AK rate this post as useful

Thanks for your suggestion 2006/2/22 12:52
Thanks mate for your suggestion. I'll give them a ring today and see what happens.
by Joey Misa rate this post as useful

Help with banks 2006/10/18 01:22
The reason your purchase is decined by the usa processeor is two fold.Both are fraud related and the other is called AVS.Address verifcation system-its is used to check that the card used is registered at a address to stop fraud.Your card being from a japenese bank has a BIN number the first 6 digits of any card are how other banks id a card.It shows a non usa bank and also your address is not gonna show up as its not there either.

So the solution-have your relative ad you to a account as a authrised user-dont know if that is possable.It would solve all your problems.The other is use gift card visas or pre-paid debits offered by usa banks.Do a google under 'debit cards usa'or some such name.

The reality is every internet purchase is tagged by bank address and there is no way round it other than my suggestions.A japanese issued citi card is useless as its BIN number is issued as Citi Japan-it ont help.
by Anon rate this post as useful

It's finally here 2007/7/8 22:44
Hi guys, hope it's alright to dig an old post up like this^^b.

I'm planing to study Japanese in Tokyo from spring 2008, and I do like to have a credit/debit card so I can shop online in Japan as well. I first found this post and start digging and asking around for info on that a couple of weeks ago. Finally, I found them... (Yes, not even only one, but two) ^o^ (drum role please)!

eBank Money Card (Visa Debit+Cash Card)

Suruga Bank Visa Debit

Source: Wikipedia - Debit card

BTW: Suruga Bank even offers home loans to foreigners. That's something new (I think) for people who like the place so much that they want to stuck themselves with a mortgage there 8=p .

Last but not leas, I find this site and especially the forum very informative. Keep up the good work guys!
by GwaiJai rate this post as useful

credit card 2007/9/24 19:00
Anyone who can answer my question.I like to apply a visa card but may husband is a blacklisted to credit card.Did my applied will be affected?thanks in advance who would like to answer me.
by sweetgirl rate this post as useful

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