died in the wool ______

To have no set purpose in one's life is the harlotry of the will -Stephen Mackenna-

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

sneakily sending money home

Because I'm so smart, I thought I would share with you the ideal way of sending money home to, well America at least.

Ways of sending home money for suckers/losers:

Lloyds Remittance Service:

It's in all the newspapers. JET promotes it in its mountains of literature. Why is it for losers? a) you have to pay to wire the money from your japanese account to your japanese Lloyds account, then pay lloyds 2000 yen to wire the money to your account in america, then the bank you're mailing to in america will charge yet another fee, then there is the conversion exchange. I ended up paying about $50 to send money home.

The post office

The post office is infinately cheaper. Using a money order you pay 500 yen (a little less than $5) for every $750 you send home. Then you must mail that money order. The only advantage of Lloyds is that it is almost instantaneous. The post office all depends on how much you're willing to send it how fast.

Now comes sneakiness.

The post office has a special card for use abroad. You can take money of an American ATM, and simply deposit that money into your account at home. The drawbacks? You need a collaborater to sneakily put the money into your home account, which means they need atm cards for both your postal account and your checking account in the states. It best be someone you trust. More frustrating, though, is the 'horyu settei', which basically requires you to go to the post office in person and say 'I want this much money accessible abroad'. Huge pain with the lines at the post office.

The sneakiness I've chosen is two open two bank accounts that have atm cards that can be used at foreign ATM's. The only problem now is, since Japanese banks won't issue duplicate cards for people other than family with foreign ID cards, is that you have to get the money into the account, usually via bank transfer, or just have your company put part of your salary in one account every month. There is a charge of 210 for every $500 taken out of the account,and if you have a collaborator, it can be even faster than Lloyd's!


At 12:08 AM, Blogger Michael said...

What I did was open an account at an international bank (in my case Citibank, but BoA or Citizens or whatever else would work too) that has branches both in Japan and in the US. Much easier.

At 10:33 AM, Blogger Travis said...

You're right. But to have a citibank account here requires a minimum balance of several thousand dollars, which I don't have right now. Plus citibank ain't doing to well here in Japan right now, if you've heard, and my salary is paid in yen, so I need to have a Japanese bank

But I think I will check into it one more time.

At 11:26 PM, Blogger Michael said...

Getting paid in Yen these days is a good thing (considering the plummetting dollar), and you can deposit money in a bank account in whatever denominations, and it'll either stay that way or convert based on daily rates, depending on how you account is set up.

At 12:00 PM, Blogger Travis said...

And thank god for the weakening dollar. About four years ago it was 130 to the dollar. Ouch!

I think you're speaking of a multi money account. http://www.citibank.co.jp/en/b_svc/index.html

maybe I'll have one when I become a *true* expat. sigh...

At 12:36 PM, Blogger SomewhatAtlanticPacific said...

Yes, but if you try to send more than $7500 via the post, you end up paying $50 bucks anyway.

At 9:41 PM, Blogger Travis said...

Oh, if I only had $7500 to send home.


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