Nearest Banks and ATMs from OIST
- Bank of Okinawa (沖縄銀行)
Address: 2491-1 Onna, Onna-son
- Bank of the Ryukyus (琉球銀行)
Address: 2-23-6 Ishikawa, Uruma-shi
- Japan Post Bank (ゆうちょ銀行)
Address: 107 Nakadomari, Onna-son
- Bank of Okinawa (沖縄銀行)
Level C, OIST Center Building
- Family Mart (ファミリーマート)
Address: 1917 Tancha, Onna-son
TEL: 098- 965-6550
- Lawson (ローソン)
Address:: 2581-1 Onna, Onna-son
You can pay most bills by taking the invoice to a bank or convenience store (Lawson, FamilyMart, etc.) and paying in cash. Or, you can set up an automatic bank payment at your bank. To set up an automatic bill payment for rent and water, please check with your landlord/realtor. For electricity and gas, you need to bring an invoice, ID, and your inkan to your bank. Phone (cell phone) bills can be arranged at the time you apply for your line.
If there is not enough money in your account at the time of automatic payment, usually the company will send out a notice stating that it tried unsuccessfully to withdraw money from your account, and will make a second attempt later. You may need to pay directly at the bank in cases of insufficient funds or overdue bills.
Loans and Credit Cards
1. Bank Loans
It is difficult, though possible, to get a bank loan in Japan as a foreigner. You must be employed in Japan, and you will need to bring such documents as your passport, Residence Card or Alien Registration Card, and proof of employment (consult your bank to find out what is necessary). You must also find a guarantor. The bank may ask to see a permanent residence permit. Some banks offer loans to foreigners more readily than others. Please check with the various banks for requirements.
2. Credit Cards
Japan is very much a cash-based society and credit cards are not used as widely as in the West. This is especially true in Okinawa. It is very difficult for non-Japanese to obtain a credit card from a Japanese bank or credit company. You can still use your credit card from your country. However, some places will not accept a credit card issued outside of Japan.
Because OIST is enrolled in Private School Mutual Aid, employees, students and their dependents who are enrolled in this scheme are eligible to receive a PSMA credit card.
You can exchange foreign currencies at banks and exchange shops. Also there is an exchange machine at AEON for U.S. dollars to Yen. Exchange shops offer better rates than banks. Edoya, one of the major exchange shops in Okinawa, deals with 32 currencies.
1-3-4 Mihama, Chatan-cho 098-987-5280
1-22-18 Chuo, Okinawa-shi 098-937-1333
*Please call ahead and confirm they have the currencies you would like to exchange in stock.