The Immigration Information Centers

Mobile/Cell Phone Contracts In Japan

Basically, there are two types of mobile/cell phone services in Japan. One is MNO, a major carrier service provider that has a own telecommunication facility. There are three companies which operate in Japan: Docomo, au and Softbank. The other one is MVNO, they borrow MNO’s facility and provide cheaper alternative services. There are more than 20 companies that are offering this service in Japan. Each MVNO company belongs to one of three MNO companies.

MNO service operators: Docomo, au and Softbank

Those three major operators compete rapidly by offering competitive contracts and promotions. It is often very confusing for costumers to choose a contract from so many choices. You might shop around for the best suited for your needs. It might be a good idea to ask around your friends and colleagues about their contracts. There are so many ways to save money by swapping contracts between them but the contract’s rule has often been changed by The Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications in Japan. Thus people also need to check the latest rule and promotions from the companies.

How to sign up a contract with  Docomo, au or Softbank

When people want to sign a Mobile/Cell Phone contract ,  it is recommended to go to one of their shops to do so. A customer need to bring ID as well as bank details or credit card details. Please do not forget your personal Japanese stamp/seal.  The provider would run background check such as its credit history. There is a possibility of a rejection if a person has history of termination of a contract before as well as “bad credit “.  If a person have a doubt, it may be better idea to take a lower price phone or use a family joint contract.

MVNO service operators: Y!mobile(Softbank), UQ(au), mineo(all3)and LINE

Mobile (mainly Softbank)

There are so many MVNO service operators that are offering competitive contracts. The biggest difference between MNO and MVNO would be that MVNO offers a data only contract which is suited for people who do not need to make phone calls. Once you know the average usage of data, you should know which price plan to take out. Just remember that, MVNO service’s speed might be slower at the busy peek time. They offer plans with a phone or sim only contracts.

How to sign up a contract with MVNO service operators

Most of MVNO service operators do not have their high street shops, people need to take out their plans via online. This is the one of the reasons why their service is cheaper than MNO. You also need a credit card to take out a plan.

MNP (Mobile Number Portability)

It’s common in Japan to get more reasonable service by MNP. MNP is a change of contract providers by keeping the same number. By doing this, often people get cash back and better price deal. People need to also shop around for this swap!


Related Links
Landline phone contract
Procedures for moving:引越しに必要な手続き
Social Insurance System in Japan:日本の社会保険制度
Free Wifi Spot in Japan :日本の無料Wifiスポット
Chain restaurants’s Free Wifi in Japan(ファミレスの無料Wifiスポット)
Cafes’s Free Wifi in Japan (カフェの無料Wifi)




  • コメント ( 0 )

  • トラックバックは利用できません。

  1. この記事へのコメントはありません。