Yesterday, the controversial budget finally finally passed the Japanese Parliament yesterday. The major bills were controversial Teigaku-kyufukin (定額給付金), and holiday discount of highway.
12,000 yen Teigaku-Kyufukin
So it is now official that the everybody who legally resided in Japan on Feb 1, 2009 are eligible for 12,000 yen (the 18 and younger, and the 65 and older will receive 20,000 yen).
To check your eligibility, look at my older post.
The majority of Japanese people are already tired of this topic.
It’s been over half year since the government started talking about it.
The Japanese people are sick and tired of these already non-sense-and-super-late policy after seeing Taiwan and China executed the similar plans within a month.
Anyhow, the bill has passed.
So it’s now final that ALL people who lived in Japan on Feb 1, 2009 including the registered foreigners, are now eligible to receive the 12,000 yen.
BUT YOU NEED TO CLAIM IT. BUT THE PROCESS MAY VARY DEPENDS ON THE CITIES YOU LIVE.
The Japanese government passed this task to the local government to give out the money.
The problem is… now it’s Tax season.
Most of the city official are overwhelmed with tax stuff. So it may be some delay.
Only about 5 towns and villages which don’t have much population, are giving out the money this week.
However the most of the local agencies just don’t have enough man power to execute the distribution quickly enough.
According to the survey of TV-Tokyo “World Business Satelite” on March 4, the majority of cities and towns are planning to distribute the money in April.
Here is the article from Mainichi Shimbun
One of the worst cities is Nagoya.
Nagoya doesn’t have time until June~!
So I’m sorry to the people who live in Nagoya.
But the city officials are overwhelmed already. It’s just too many people lived in Nagoya. And the city officials are already busy with tax, and bad economy.
And if you are planning to move out from Nagoya…. The letter will be sent to the address you lived on Feb 1, 2009….. The city never mentioned how to take care of movers…. If you are lucky to have a roommate or family, and then it may be ok. But if you don’t….. you may have to give up 12,000 yen.
How to Claim Your 12,000 Yen
Anyway, here is how you can claim the money.
The small towns may give out the money at the local city hall with valid ID.
But if you live in a large city, the process may be like this.
* They will usually distribute the money per household basis.
1. You will receive the letter from the local government
2. You will confirm how many people are in your household, and accept or refuse this Teigaku-Kyufukin
3. You reply the mail to the local government with the bank account info
4. You will receive the confirmation mail to notify when the money being deposited to your bank account
5. And you finally receive money.
[CAUTION!!!!] BUUUUT, the Japanese government completely let the local government to decide how to distribute the money, so you will have to consult with the local city hall to confirm….
Ahh.. it’s pain in an a**.
Toll-way Holiday Discount is Coming
So another bill that passed yesterday was weekend and holiday discount for toll-ways. They are planning to start this discount program on March 28th for two years.
(March 11, 2009) They announced that their pricing system will not be able to finish updating fully. Therefore, they will start partial discount on March 28, and plan to engage full discount at the end of April.
If you drive more than 100km on the Japanese highway on a weekend… the fee will be only 1,000 yen~!
Well, this is not that easy. Here are the catch.
1. Your car must have ETC device (electronic toll collection (system))
2. If you passed any metropolitan area and toll gate, the charge will be reset.
So you cannot go from Hokkaido to Kyushu with 1,000 yen.
For example, according to Mainichi Shimbun’s article
From Aomori to Kagoshima, you need to avoid Tokyo area, and since you may have to go through Osaka metropolitan area.
1000 yen (Aomori to Kagoshima except Osaka area) + 1500 yen (Osaka Metropolitan Tollway) = the total 2,500 yen.
With the regular pricing, it will cost 39,250 yen. So it’s still a huge discount (and then, of course, you need to pay your gas)
They will have the online fee calculator soon on their web site… but they are only Japanese.
So unless you are an ALT who have the contract not to drive in Japan, it may be a good time to travel around Japan on the weekend with your friend… But I still recommend to get JR rail pass though.
Since I know that there are soo many foreigners living in Japan who do not know about this… I will release this blog post to anyone under Creative Commons License.
If you can add the hyperlink and credit to my blog, that would be great… but not required… I just want to help as many people as possible for this.