When you'd like to drive a car in Japan without bringing your own car from your country, you can rent, lease or purchase one here.
Part 1. Purchasing
Car ownership in Japan is costly and incurs following responsibilities on the part of the new car owner.
*Full insurance overage (compulsory and optional)
*Mandatory peridical maintenance checks, called 'Shaken', in accordance with the national regulations, which often is very expensive.
*Submissions of a certificate that you have a parking lot within 500 meters of your residence.
You must have a registered parking space and submit the parking space certificate (Shako-shomeisho) to the police.
Acquisition tax, weight tax and annual tax.
*Sale, disposal or export arrangements before leaving Japan.
Neccessary requirements for registering your car
You have to submit the following documents for application of car registration:
– Certificate of signature issued by your embassy.
– Parking space certificate (Shako-shomeisho) issued by the police department, which proves that a parking space has been secured.
– Foreign resident registration card. (Alien Registration Card)
When purchasing a car, be sure the paperwork is filled out correctly transfer of ownership, clear taxing and lawful ownership.
Car dealers with English Speaking Staff
New and used car sales, Administration, Auto Service, Break Down Service, Insurance, Finance/Leasing, English Navigation System, Export & Shipping, Shaken (Compulsory Automobile Inspection)
Address: 1-13-2, Higashi-Azabu, Minato-ku, Tokyo
AUTO SUPPLY JAPAN Co. Ltd.
New and used car sales, leasing & selling, export, repairs, Paper work, insurance, finance, 'Shaken', General advice on cars
Call direct: 090-3805-7141 Mick Lay
Part 2. Leasing
What is a car lease?
It is a system to lease a car in accordance by a contract between the leasing company and the user at a certain price for a certain period.
The concept of the lease is a separation of ownership and use. It is a system covering financing, taxes, insurance and maintenance in a package.
You could obtain the following merits by arranging a car by leasing.
1) By setting the residual value at the end of the lease contract, your monthly payment will be mitigated and become easier to switch to a higher-ranking car.
2) Depending on leasing company, you can lease your desired car model from various carmakers, including imported foreign cars. So you will be able to have your option to choose your favorite new car. When you want to lease a second-hand car, you may ask a person in charge if the company is able to provide such a service.
3) You can take advantage of the vehicle discount deriving from the large car fleet of leasing company.
4) Without a down payment, you can lease a car, depending on the car price. You may pay only a monthly leasing fee. You can also use a monthly payment method jointly with payments at the time of salary bonuses payment.
Calculation of monthly leasing fee (Car cost + Miscellaneous expenses + Interest – Residual value) / Leasing period.
5) You can include car insurance into the leasing fee.
Your option after the contract termination. You can have the following options after the end of the contract in case of the open-end contract.
1) Switch to a new car.
A car under the current lease will be allotted as a trade-in car. The residual value (the expected sales price) and the actual trade-in price will be offset, easing your financial burden in the next contact of new car.
2) Extension (Renewal)
You can extend the contract at the leasing price calculated on the basis of the residual value.
The leasing company collects the car and the balance of the residual value and assessed value will be settled.
You can purchase the car at the price agreed at the outset. Expenses for name change, automobile tax, income tax, etc . will be borne by you separately.
Open-end contract : It is a contract to settle the balance between the assessed value and the purchasing price (the residual value)
Closed-end contract : It is a contract not to settle the balance between the assessed value and purchasing price (the residual value)
Lease contracts with companies are usually made based on this contract.
Part 3. Rent-a-car
To rent a car in Japanese, the following items are required.
* Driver’s license valid in Japan
* Credit card
When a customer rents a car:
1. Making reservation
Though you can reserve a car by calling a reservation center of leasing company or by visiting a branch location directly, it will be easier and convenient for you to reserve a car through a reservation center because you can talk to a person who can speak English. There is few company’s staff to speak English at branch offices.
The following information should be given to the company’ staff of a reservation center.
- Your name
- Phone number for contact
- Departure or arrival date and time
- Location for departure and for arrival
- Desired options (4WD vehicle, or other features)
- Number of passengers riding on the car
If there is a child under 6 years of age, a child seat will be provided.
2. When coming to a location:
- Tell that the clerk that you have a reservation.
- A contract will be prepared, which you should check and sign.
- Prepay an estimated amount
- Check the car for scratches and dents, etc. and cleanliness.
3. When returning a car:
- Fill the tank with fuel at a nearby gas station or pay at the return location for the gas used as determined by the calculation formula based on the mileage.
- Check if any personal effects are left inside the car and return the car to the scheduled rental location.
- Together with a rental location staff member, check the car for scratches, dents, etc.
If you used the car longer than originally scheduled, then pay the additional amount.
4. Reservation changes and cancellation
Inform the company’s staff in advance of reservation change and cancellation. Cancellation charges will be required if you cancel your reservation after the deadline before a date for departure. Moreover, if you do not contact the rental location even after one hour has passed form predetermined time, the reservation shall be regarded as cancelled.