Living in Japan

How to do a bank transfer at a Japanese ATM: Furikomi Explained

In this article, we explain how to do a domestic bank transfer (furikomi) at a Japanese ATM, using a cash card (ATM card) to transfer money from your account to another bank account in Japan. This post is part of our series on how to live in a Japanese apartment, which covers practical aspects of living in Japan, such as reading your electricity bill and setting up an internet connection.

The majority of people in Japan pay their rent by automatic withdrawal or manual bank transfer every month. When you pay your utility bills, you may also want to pay by bank transfer, though you have the option of paying by automatic withdrawal, with a credit card or with a payment slip at the convenience store.

If you don’t have a Japanese bank account, it is almost impossible to rent a long-term apartment in Japan because most landlords and property management companies do not accept credit cards as a payment option.

If you do not have a domestic bank account (or even if you do and would rather pay your rent by credit card to earn points), you may want to consider using the GaijinPot Housing Service through which you can rent an apartment without a guarantor and can pay all your costs (including move-in costs and monthly rent) with a credit card.

If you do have a bank account and want to pay your rent by bank transfer, below is how to do so using your cash card at an ATM machine.

Most Japanese bank ATMs give you the option to select the language (English, Korean, Chinese, or Portuguese) by tapping the appropriate button on the start screen, but there is some information that will be provided to you only in Japanese: most importantly, the bank account details of where to transfer payment to.

Information you need to do a domestic bank transfer (furikomi, 振り込み)

To do a domestic wire transfer, you need to know the following five pieces of information about the company or person that you are transferring money to (the recipient or payee). You will be given this information by your landlord or property management company. Remember to bring this info with you on a slip of paper or saved on your smart phone.

  1. 銀行名 (Ginkō-mei) or 金融機関名(Kin’yūkikan-mei): Name of bank or financial institution
  2. 支店名 (Shiten-mei): Name of branch
  3. 口座科目 (Kōza kamoku): Account type
    1. 当座 (Tōza) – Current (Checking) Account or
    2. 普通 (Futsū) – Regular Account
  4. 口座番号 (Kōza bangō): This is a seven digit number
  5. 口座名義 (Kōza meigi): The name of the company or person you are transferring money to (payee)

You will also need:

  • Your cash (ATM) card
  • Basic knowledge of hiragana and/or katakana to select the bank and input the payee’s name

Bank Transfer Cut-Off Time

The bank transfer cut-off time for most banks in Japan is 3PM on weekdays. If you do a furikomi bank transfer before 3PM on a business day, it will go through on the same day. After this time or on a weekend, it will go through on the following business day. Keep this in mind so you don’t miss any deadlines (like the day your rent is due!).

Asking for help

If you use a bank ATM inside a bank branch during business hours, there is usually an attendant standing by to help. Most Japanese bank employees do not speak English, but if you show them the bank transfer information above, they will likely understand that you want to do a furikomi bank transfer, show you how to switch the screen to English, and help you with the screens that require katakana input.

お振込みをしたいです: Ofurikomi shitai desu. (I would like to do a bank transfer.)

助けてください。: Tasukete kudasai. (Please help me.)


Steps for Doing a Bank Transfer with a Cash Card

Every bank ATM is a little different, but the following steps are generally applicable to every domestic bank transfer.

  1. Step 1: Select ofurikomi (お振込み) on the welcome screen
  2. Step 2: Acknowledge that you are aware of possible bank transfer fees
  3. Step 3: Insert your cash card and input your PIN
  4. Step 4: Select the name of the recipient bank
  5. Step 5: Select the name of the recipient bank branch
  6. Step 6: Select the account type (checking or regular)
  7. Step 7: Input the 7-digit account number
  8. Step 8: Input the transfer amount
  9. Step 9: Confirm that all transfer info is correct

Step 1: Select ofurikomi (お振り込み) on the welcome screen

Step 1: On the welcome screen, select お振込み (ofurikomi), which means “transfer”. Image: おカネちゃん.com

Step 2: Acknowledge that you are aware of possible bank transfer fees

Step 2: Acknowledge that you are aware of possible bank transfer fees. Many Japanese banks charge extra fees for doing a bank transfer outside “regular” ATM hours (usually between 9AM and 9PM). Image: おカネちゃん.com

Tap the green 確認 (kakunin) button to confirm that you are aware of possible extra fees.

This is read “Kakunin” and means “Confirm”

Step 3: Insert your cash card and input your PIN

Step 2: Insert your cash card. Some bank ATMs will also give you the option of inserting your deposit ledger booklet (通帳, tsuchou) so that the transaction can be recorded. If you wish to do so, open the booklet and insert it BEFORE you insert your cash card. Image: おカネちゃん.com

Fraud Alert Screen

This is a fraud alert screen warning you that recently there have been incidences of scams where the perpetrator calls pretending to be a family member asking to be sent money. To continue with the transaction, tap the blue 続ける (tsudsukeru) button. To stop the transaction, tap the red 中止 (chushi suru) button. Depending on which bank ATM you use, this screen may be shown in a different step. Image: おカネちゃん.com

Input your PIN

Input your 4-digit PIN on the next screen, after acknowledging the fraud alert. Image: おカネちゃん.com

PIN in Japanese is 暗証番号 (anshou bangou).

If you make a mistake while inputting your PIN, you can tap the yellow 訂正 (teisei) button, which means “correction”.

Re-confirm that you want to do a furikomi bank transfer and will designate a payee.

Tap the blue 振り込み先指定 button to acknowledge that you will designate a payee on the next screen. This button means “designate bank transfer payee” (furikomi-saki shitei). Image: おカネちゃん.com

Step 4: Select the name of the recipient bank

Step 4: Select the name of the recipient bank or financial institution. Most bank ATMs will display the names of the major national and regional banks. You just need to tap on the correct one. If the recipient bank is not already listed, you will need to tap on “その他金融機関” which means “other financial institution” and you will be taken to another screen where you will be asked to input the first few characters in katakana of the recipient bank name and another list will be displayed for you to choose from. Image: おカネちゃん.com

Step 5: Select the name of the recipient bank branch

Step 5: On the next screen you are prompted to input the first few characters in katakana of the bank branch name (支店名). In this example, Mizuho Bank (みずほ銀行) was selected on the previous screen as the bank. Image: おカネちゃん.com

Step 5, continued: The screen will be populated with a list of branch names that match the characters you inputted. Here we see a list of bank branches starting with the character “i” (い). Image: おカネちゃん.com

Step 6: Select the Account Type

Step 6: In this step, select the bank account type (振り込み科目). In almost all cases, the account type will be futsu (普通), which means a regular account or touza (当座), which means a checking account. Image: おカネちゃん.com

Step 7: Input the 7-digit account number

Step 7: In this step you will be prompted to input the 7-digit account number provided to you by the payee. Image: おカネちゃん.com

Register payee info if you will be transferring money to this payee again!

At this point, most bank ATMs will show you a screen asking whether you want to register this payee information for future use. It’s a good idea to do so, especially if you’ll be paying your rent by bank transfer every month. Here are the two words and buttons you’ll want to look for on the registration screen:

登録する (touroku suru): register

登録しない (touroku shinai): do not register

Step 8: Input the bank transfer amount

Step 8: Input the bank transfer amount. Enter the correct amount then tap the green “円” button which means “yen” then “確認” to confirm. You can use just numbers to enter the amount or the 万 button to add four zeros (units of 10,000 yen) or the 千 (sen) button to add three zeros (units of 1,000 yen). Image: おカネちゃん.com

The next screen asks you to confirm that the transfer amount is correct. Tap the green button to continue.

Step 9: Confirm that all transfer info is correct

Step 9: This is the final step! Look over the info on the confirmation screen to make sure everything is correct. Tap the green 確認 (kakunin) button to complete the transaction.

Useful vocabulary for doing a bank transfer

Below is some vocabulary that is useful for doing a bank transfer.

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