ATMs in Hokkaido

ATMs (Automatic Teller Machines) are easy to find in Hokkaido. The machines are placed at post offices, banks, convenience stores, department stores, airports, hotels, and at large buildings. Some ATMs accept credit, debit, and ATM cards issued outside of Japan. Those accepting places are post offices, airports, major banks, and major department stores and convenient stores where stickers display Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Diners, JCB, Plus, Euro card, Maestro, Cirrus, and the like.

Another way to use ATMs is to open a bank account. An employee for a Japanese company or a person who has lived in Japan for at least six months can open a bank account. A person who does not meet the requirements can be advised by inquiring of other financial institutions for opening an account.

Also, the post office provides a savings account, through a similar procedure required at a bank. A post office cash card is valid for ATMs at any post offices nationwide, free of charge.

ATM service hours vary by location, bank, or post office. Major convenience stores, however, open 24 hours a day all the year round.

Most banks' ATM hours are from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

Bank business hours are Monday to Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. No charge on using the bank issued ATM cards during the bank hours. Otherwise, a fee is charged anywhere from 105 yen and up, varying by bank.

Language options for the ATM screen are provided at the post offices, international banks, major Japanese banks, and major department and convenient stores. Some ATM language options include English, while others include English, Korean, Chinese, and Portuguese.

Before leaving for Japan, notify your bank at home that you are going to use the card overseas. So the bank can make an arrangement with your card for international use. You might also want to ask about fees on it.

To use an ATM, find the word "English" or the appropriate language on the screen, and touch on it.

The Japanese screen will be changed into English or the language.

Then, follow the instructions.

Friendly employees are always willing to help their customers. Do not hesitate to ask for help. If not fluent, many employees at work speak English in Hokkaido. Even if they do not speak English, they would be kind enough to help you out by communicating in sign language.
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