Forgot to Pay Electricity Bill in Japan? What to Know & Do
Forgot to pay your electricity bill? Or your water or gas bill? This article will guide you through the steps for how to get your electricity bill turned back on.
What to do if you've forgotten to pay an electricity bill
Fortunately, if you forget to pay an electricity bill in Japan, you won't lose electricity immediately. Often, you will receive a few new invoices and a reminder to pay by a specified date.
However, failing to pay your electricity bill after two months will result in the utility company cutting off your power supply.
The easiest way to deal with an overdue payment is to take your new invoice and pay it by the appointed date. But suppose you can't make your payment because you lost your invoice?
In that case, you should call your electricity supplier's customer service hotline, and they will reissue a new payment voucher for you.
Always remember to check the back of the invoice for accepted payment methods. Some convenience stores won't process bills past their due date, so you may have to go to the utility company to settle the amount.
Step-by-step guide on what to do if you lose electricity
Here are some steps to take if you lose electricity because you forgot to pay your electricity bill.
Step 1. Locate customer support
Locate the call center or customer support page for the utility service provider that you are using. We provide a list of all the major electricity service providers in Japan further down in this article.
Step 2. Contact customer support
Contact your utilities' customer support immediately if you lose power after not paying your electricity bill.
Step 3. Settle your late fees.
The utility company's customer center will walk you through how to settle your late fees and restart your power supply. However, you may not receive power immediately after paying your bill. How long it takes depends on the power company and the situation.
The best way to prevent losing your power is to make sure you pay your bills on time. If you frequently forget to pay utility bills, consider switching payment methods to an automatic withdrawal billing system.
Electricity providers' customer support pages
Here's a list of the major electricity and utilities companies in Japan along with how to get in touch with their customer support:
TEPCO (Tokyo Electric Power)
Customer support portal for TEPCO
CHUDEN (Chubu Electric Power)
Customer support portal for Chuden
HEPCO (Hokkaido Electric Power)
Customer support portal for HEPCO
Tohoku Electric Power
Customer support portal for Tohoku Electric Power
RIKUDEN (Hokuriku Electric Power)
Customer support portal for RIKUDEN
KEPCO (Kansai Electric Power)
CCustomer support portal for KEPCO
Chugoku Electric Power
Customer support portal for Chugoku
YONDEN (Shikoku Electric Power)
Customer support portal for YONDEN
KYUDEN (Kyushu Electric Power)
Customer support portal for Kyuden
Okinawa Electric Power
Customer support portal for Okinawa Electric Power
How much are late payment penalties?
Late account transfer payment on an electric bill can incur an interest rate of 0.03% per day (10% annually).
For example, if the bill was ¥5000, and you pay it 30 days after the due date, the company may charge a late fee of ¥45.
Although this is a small fee, you can ultimately lose your electricity if you continue to ignore paying your bill.
How to pay utility bills online with MailMate
Going home for the holidays? But want your bills paid on your behalf while you’re gone? Consider MailMate! Perhaps you're on an extended trip and you don't have anyone to check your mailbox?
MailMate is a virtual mailbox service that can take care of processing utility payments on your behalf.
Here’s how it works:
Sign up for a MailMate account.
Use Japan Post’s mail forwarding service to get your mail redirected to MailMate headquarters.
Go travel and enjoy yourself.
We notify you when we receive a utility bill (or any mail!).
You click on the “Pay Bill” button in the MailMate dashboard. And we go to the convenience store and pay it on your behalf!
Frequently asked questions
How do I pay a TEPCO electricity bill?
TEPCO is Tokyo's largest electricity supplier. Payment methods for Tepco include:
Automatic payment via bank account
Paying at a convenience store
Image from Line.
You can also quickly contact customer service through their AI-powered chatbot on their Japanese website. It can assist you with issues like handling overdue payments, checking your contract information, and switching payment methods quickly and efficiently.
Can I pay my water bill online in Japan?
You can select automatic bill payment using your credit card or bank account if you fill out an application form in advance. Depending on your prefecture, online applications may be available. For example, if you live in Tokyo, making an account with 東京水道マイネット will allow you to submit your application form through their website for automatic payments.
John Cross is a Canadian Expat living in Japan. "I ended up at Mailmate after I forgot to pay my electricity bill once and they turned off the electricity in my apartment. They probably sent a warning in the mail but I don't think I would have recognized it."
Spending too long figuring out your Japanese mail?
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