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I just got back to Japan for the first time in five years.

I seem to recall that that some ATMs here don't accept foreign cards, some do but charge a fee, and some do and charge no fee.

I'm 100% aware of the fees my bank at home charges me to use ATMs overseas, I'm not asking about that.

I believe it used to be that the Post Office ATMs and the ones at 7-Eleven didn't charge fees. But when I used my first 7-Eleven one this trip it did charge a fee. Googling, I have found that Post Office ATMs now charge a fee but since results were still saying 7-Eleven doesn't charge a fee I can see such pages are not up-to-date.

Does anybody know which, if any, ATMs in Japan still don't have a fee?

  • @John: Well I suppose it's possible that I forgot about the fees in five years, especially since they're very low compared to many countries. But I think I remember right and when I Googled, the out-of-date threads I found did indeed seem to include discussion of which ATMs charge, what the fees are, and when the fees were introduces. – hippietrail Apr 17 at 6:10
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    Fair enough. I was just trying to be helpful in case it was a mistake. Most ATMs charge fees for using other banks' cards that were issued within Japan, so I imagine most will do the same for international cards. I'm interested to see if there are any though. – John Apr 17 at 6:12
  • Here's one from last year talking about 7-Eleven's introduction of fees: ozbargain.com.au/node/359796 Also, I've just noticed some threads seem to suggest that whether there is a fee might also depend on what time you use certain ATMs! Japan did always have a very complicated ATM system. – hippietrail Apr 17 at 6:14
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    Yeah, that's Japan for you (complicated). For example, at 7-11 if I withdraw from my Post Office cash card in the morning/afternoon weekdays I think I get charged 108 yen, but then if I do so in the evening, on a national holiday, or at a weekend, it's 216 yen. The Seven Eleven ATMs will show you this as a graph before you complete a withdrawal. – John Apr 17 at 6:17
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    Note, it's a mistake to think that all "foreign cards" are treated the same. Even before you consider fees, there are some "foreign cards" that will work, say, at JP Bank ATMs and not at Seven Bank ones, and for others, even of the same brand, it will be the other way around... I could go around and try with mine (French Visa debit), but your results may very well vary. – fkraiem Sep 5 at 14:20
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From my experience today (6 September 2019) with a Visa Debit card issued by a major French bank, it seems that Aeon Bank ATMs do not charge fees (or if they do, they don't tell you*, which would be surprising).

Aeon Bank ATMs are unfortunately not as ubiquitous as Japan Post Bank or Seven Bank ones, but can still be easily found nationwide using a dedicated locator tool. Note also that not all Aeon Bank ATMs accept foreign card, but the English version of the locator tool only shows those that do.

* More precisely, while they do show standard boilerplate language along the lines of "some fees may be charged depending on your card", they do not show an additional confirmation screen with an actual amount, unlike Japan Post Bank and Seven Bank ATMs, which do show such a screen. Receipts don't mention any fees, either.

  • Hmm I thought I tried one of these with my Visa Debit card from a major Australian bank and was told there would be a fee. But it's already a couple of months ago so I'm not sure. Either a) I didn't actually try or b) it depends on the bank? I definitely know that I read on the interwebs about Aeon not having a fee, at least in the past... – hippietrail Sep 6 at 11:04
  • @hippietrail I think one should distinguish between the standard boilerplate ("there may be fees depending on your card") and the ATM actually telling you "there will be a fee of X yen for this transaction". All ATMs show the former. JP and Seven show the latter as well, but Aeon doesn't (in my experience). – fkraiem Sep 6 at 11:07
  • @hippietrail Actually, at JP and Seven I aborted the transaction when the ATM told me about the fees. I tried Aeon last and expected it to do the same, so I was sort of surprised when 10,000 yen came out while I expected another confirmation screen... – fkraiem Sep 6 at 11:13
  • I would often have my phone ready to take a picture of the screen as it was telling me about the fees. So I know there's variation. I just can't remember. Need to check my Japan photos which might be on an external drive... – hippietrail Sep 6 at 11:18

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