Friday, December 19, 2008

Childbirth Registration

After a baby is born, both the mother and the baby will be hospitalized for 6 days for health monitoring. The hospital will issue a childbirth document which is very important for the later process. The document is an A3-sized paper, where Birth Certificate (出生証明書-shussei shoumeisho) is in the right part and Birth Registration (出生届 - shussei todoke) in left part. The doctor/midwife will fill up the Childbirth Certificate.

STEP 1 : To get Alien Registration Certificate (外国人登録証明書-gaikokujin touroku shoumeisho)

Foreigners desk, Ward Office

Required documents

- Alien Registration Certificate of both parent

- Mother-Child Diary (母子手帳-boshi techou)

- Document from hospital (Birth Certificate and Birth Registration)


The baby will get Alien Registration Certificate which is half A4 in size.

The officer will also stick a stamp of Reported Birth Certificate (出生届出済証明書) inside the Mother-Child Diary

STEP 2: To enroll in National Health Insurance

Insurance desk, Ward Office

Required documents

- Alien Registration Certificate of the baby

- Health Insurance Card of the family (国民健康保険被保険者証- kokumin kenkou hoken hihokensha shou)


The baby name will be added into the family Health Insurance Card

STEP 3: To apply for Child Medicare Card (乳幼児医療費受給者証-nyuuyouji iryouhi jukyuusha sho)

Insurance desk, Ward Office

Required documents

- Alien Registration Certificate of the baby and parents

- Health Insurance Card of the family -> got from STEP 2 above


The baby will get another card for any medical treatment. For any cost of medical treatment, by showing this card together with Health Insurance Card, the parent just need to pay only 580yen.

STEP 4: To apply for Child-care allowance (児童手当-jidou teate)

Welfare desk (保健福祉-hoken fukushi), Ward Office

Required documents

- Alien Registration Certificate of the baby and parents

- Health Insurance Card of the family -> got from STEP 2 above

- Bank Account Book

- Income Proof (所得証明-shotoku shoumei) -> the officer will ask you to get it from the other section in the ward office


If the family income is lower that the certain level, the householder is qualified to get monthly allowance for taking care of the baby. Refer the lastest rate with the Ward Office. For the first baby is 10,000 yen per month is transferred into bank account.

STEP 5 : To apply for Residence Status

Imigration Office

Required documents

- Parents' passport and Alien Registration Certificate

- Baby's Alien Registration Certificate

- Baby's passport (if available)

- Mother-Child Diary

- Student Identity Card

- Birth Registration (Shussei Todoke) --> after STEP 1, don't forget to ask one copy of the submitted Birth Registration. 350 yen for a certified copy of the Birth Registration.


The Office will issue a small sticker to be stamp on the baby passport

STEP 6: Notify the residence status of the baby to the Ward Office

Both Foreign desk and Insurance desk, Ward Office

Required documents

- Baby's Alien Registration Certificate

- Health Insurance Card

- Residence Status Sticker --> from STEP 5


The ward office will get notified by the residence status of the baby.

STEP 7 : To apply for the baby passport

-->depending on the baby citizenship and respected embassy procedure

Fuh! Lastly, the baby is SAFE...legally

Friday, October 31, 2008

autumn in hokudai 2008

Ginkgo Avenue of Hokkaido University is one of the best spot for autumn scenery viewing. This week is the best time for it. I just took this picture today. Last year it was so beautiful compared to this year's scenery. The next picture was taken on the peak winter, January this year. I think snow will fall earlier this year. Today, some snows can be seen at the peak of mountains area around Sapporo.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Hari Raya 2008 Celebration

MISA members in Sapporo gathered together on the First Day of Syawal 2008.

Malaysians in Hokkaido Island gathering for Hari Raya 2008 celebration. Some are from Sapporo itself, Tomakomai, Muroran, Hakodate and Kitami. There are also some Bruneian, Singaporean and Japanese friends who were also invited.

Malaysian Embassy in Tokyo Info

This is the important message from Embassy.

Malaysian Embassy in Tokyo [website]

There is alson information about Malaysian Restaurant in Japan.
Tokyo!! Ikitaiiiii...

Thursday, October 16, 2008

living cost in Sapporo

Living cost depends on individual preferences of living style.

I estimate the price for a couple like me :) per month
All figures are in Japanese Yen.

Apartment rental 40,000 (One bed room and one dining room attached with toilet and kitchen)
Mobile phone 5,000 per person including rental fee
Internet 4,000
Compulsory Medical Insurance 2,200 for couple and about 1,500 for single
Electricity 4,000
Water 3,000
Gas 2,000 during summer and up to 8,000 in winter for house heating

The lowest fare for subway is 200 yen and the highest (end to end) is 32o yen

Chicken 1 kg 500
Beef 1 kg 800
Rice 5 kg 1,500
Egg 10 180
Taufu 200g 200
wheat flour 1 kg 150
Sunflower oil 1 kg 250

Others fresh seafood and vegetables are highly depending on season. Generally all of them are very cheap in the summer and autumn since these products are harvested during the seasons.
red onion 50 to 200 yen per
Japanese cucumber (kyuuri) 20 to 70 yen per stick
a raw corn 30 to 200 yen

*will be updated time to time

Sunday, October 12, 2008

heater pack (カイロ-kairo)

When I was in my first winter in Sapporo, my friend suggested me to have a KAIRO. I tried to find it out at pharmacy shop and I bought some packet of KAIRO. Unfortunately, I didn't know how to use it at that time. Now, I recommended this handy thing to those who are extreme cold non-resistance people :D That was the first time I knew about such product.

KAIRO or in katakana カイロ is a handy heater in packet. There are several type of KAIRO.
All of them are really cheap less than 500 yen in bundle depending on brand and size. During winter, it sold in almost any Convinience Store, Pharmacy and Supermarket.

How does it work. KAIRO is packed inside a secured sealed plastics. Actually, when we tear the plastics, the KAIRO sacket is expose to moisture. This will trigger chemical reaction with the material in the sacket and produce heat. Wait for about 10 minutes to allow the sachet to gradually releasing heat. Generally, the KAIRO is able to continously releasing certain amount heat at about 40 to 50 degrees celcius in about 4 hours and it is one-time use.

1) In mini packet.
I usually bring this type several packets in my bag in case I really need that during my walk or sightseing. When the weather is really cold, I tear the packet and hold the sachet to warm my hand or touch gently on my face to release some heat. We can also find the packet in bigger size with adhesive material in on side of the KAIRO sachet and put inside our winter jacket to give inner warm to our body.

2) Cream type
I don't like it since I don't like any cream or lotion to put on my skin. I feel weird.
To use it, just apply small amout of the cream on your skin and you will feel warm.
Do not put it too much, otherwise your skin will burn.

3) For shoe
For comfortable, one can put this type of KAIRO inside the shoe (outside sock). This will give warm to innerside of shoe. My wife usually put this packet of KAIRO inside her shoes when we want to go for a walk.

Winter is coming soon. Samuiiiiii!!
Tips for winter clothing and walking, please click here (English)

Monday, September 22, 2008

Baby Shop in Sapporo

When it comes to the term Baby Shop, it includes the maternity-related items for expected mothers. Here I listed the baby shop both for new and second hand items.

For specialized new item Baby shops

1) Akachan honpo (アカチャンホンポ)Stores, click here (Japanese)

Sapporo ESTA branch
JR-ESTA Tower, 7th Floor
Sapporo-shi Chuo-ku Kita 5-jou Nishi 2-1
Tel : 011-223-0631 Hour : 10:00~21:00

Atsubetsu Branch
Sapporo-shi Atsubetsu-ku Atsubetsu Chuo5-1-9-1
Tel : 011-896-5501 Hour :

Tonden Branch
Ito Yookadoo Tonden Mall, 2nd Floor
Sapporo-shi Kita-ku Tonden 8-jou 3-5-1
Tel : 011-774-1915 Hour : 9:00~22:00

2) Nishi matsuya (西松屋) Baby Kids Stores, click here (Japanese)

Sapporo Shin Kotoni Branch
Sapporo-shi Kita-ku Shinkotoni 1-jou 13-choume 16-25
011-765-5508 AM10:00~PM8:00

Tonden Branch
Sapporo-shi Kita-ku Tonden 8-jou 7-choume 10-27

Shiroishi Branch
Sapporo-shi Shiroishi-ku Kikusui 8-jou 4-choume 2-15

Kiyota Branch
Sapporo-shi Kiyota-ku Kitano 6-jou 2-choume 14-ban 2

Ishiyama Branch
Sapporo-shi Minami-ku Ishiyama 2-jou 9-choume 7-ban 62-gou

Hoshioki Branch
Sapporo-shi Teine Yamaguchi 478 Banchi 1 E-3

3) Birthday (バースデイ)
Sapporo-shi Kiyota-ku Hiraoka 3-jou 1-choume 10-1

For specialized second hand Baby shops

1) B.Kid, click here (Japanese)
Sapporo-shi Kita-ku Tonden 6-jou 6-3-14
Tel : 011-775-6993 Hour : 10:00~20:00

2) Bons Recycle Shop

-Nakanoshima Branch
Sapporo-shi Toyohira-ku Nakanoshima 2-jou 4-choume 1-22
Tel : 0120-855-227 Hour : 10:00~19:00

- Yamanote Branch
Sapporo-shi Nishi-ku Yamanote 3 -jou 4-choume 1-29
Hour: 10:00~19:00

And others, click here (Japanese)

Friday, August 8, 2008

[In Malay] Kadar Elaun Sara Hidup SLAI/SLAB di Jepun

Banyak kali juga kawan-kawan yang berminat untuk menyambung pelajaran di luar negara bertanyakan saya kadar elaun di Jepun, mahupun di Jerman. Dan banyak kali juga orang yang sama sahaja yang bertanya, masuk telinga kanan keluar ikut lubang hidung sebelah kiri. (macam nada tertekan je nih :))

Oleh itu, saya cuba mencari sumber yang terkini dan terbaik mengenai kadar elaun yang sentiasa berubah mengikut situasi ekonomi dunia (cheewah). Maklumlah, orang kita ini suka di suap. Suruh cari sendiri pun malas. Jadi, lain kali kalau ada yang bertanya lagi, saya bagi terus pautan berikut, saya pun MALAS nak taip satu persatu di email, mahupun di Yahoo Messenger.*
*terima kasih UPSI (update on Feb 5th, 2012)

- Web tersebut juga memaparkan kadar elaun di negara lain

- Untuk Jepun, terdapat kekurangan perincian seperti
1) Elaun Penempatan = 250,125 Yen (Untuk pegawai) dibayar sekali di awal pengajian
2) Elaun Akhir pengajian = 100,050 Yen (Untuk pegawai) dibayar sekali di akhir pengajian
3) Elaun Tesis = 84,238 Yen di bayar sekali di akhir pengajian
4) Elaun Pakaian Panas = RM1500 untuk pegawai di bayar sekali di awal pengajian (RM1000 untuk isteri dan anak2 saya tidak tahu)
5) Terdapat insurans kesihatan yang wajib disertai pelajar di Jepun. Premium insurans ini layak dituntut daripada penaja.

Mari kita buat contoh kira-kira :

Encik Z akan menyambung pelajaran ke Universiti Akita dan membawa bersama seorang isteri dan 2 orang anak. Berapakan elaun bulanan yang beliau terima?

Jawapan :

Akita tidak berada dalam senarai kawasan, maka Kadar B dirujuk
Elaun Sara Hidup (Pegawai) : ¥166,750
Elaun Bantuan Sewa Rumah (Pegawai, Isteri/Suami dan 1 atau 2 anak ) : ¥ 50,025
Elaun Bantuan Keluarga : ¥ 66,700

Maka jumlah keseluruhan elaun yang diterima ialah ¥166,750 + ¥ 50,025 + ¥ 66,700 = ¥283,475

Sekian Terima Kasih..sebarang maklumat terkini yang mungkin anda ketahui, sila maklumkan untuk rujukan bersama. Ijou desu. Selamat Belajar!

Monday, August 4, 2008

seijun juuhachi kippu (青春18切符)

I just knew the seasonal cheap train ticket called seijun juuhachi kippu (青春18切符).
Click these links for more information in English


The key points
- cost 11,500 Yen
- a set of 5 tickets
- can be used on unlimited route in 1 days for 1 tickets EXCEPT shinkansen and super express trains
- can be shared with friends/family
- it is sold in seasonal vacations (i.e. summer holiday)
- unreserved seat
- check above links for more

*thanks to Halim-sensei about the info

Friday, August 1, 2008

Tips for Hokudai Newcomer

[will be updated]

When I first arrived in Sapporo, I needed to find many things to start up my life. I need cup, spoon and bowl to eat, futon and pillow to sleep etc. I believe this is also true for other newcomer. With limited budget, strange environment, Japanese writing illiterate etc. to find something with cheap price and quick is a priority especially for those who arrive in the scary winter of Hokkaido :P. Here are some shops you should go to start your life.

1) 100yen shop (100円 ショップ)

There are many 100 yen shops around Japan. Its locations is generally near to train station or subway station. Among the popular chain of 100yen shops are Daiso (ダイソ) and FLET'S.
Everything is 100 yen per item (or otherwise stated) including kitchen tools, toiletries, junk food, stationeries, etc.

2) 2nd hand shop (中古店)

If you see this kanji (中古 - chuuko)on any shop, the shop generally sell second hand things including books, clothes, refrigerator, vacuum cleaner, tv, computer and even car! (depending on their specialization). I suggest 2nd Street shop to hokudai students, click here* (北10条東5 - Kita 10 jo Higashi 5 - North 10 East 5) to the nearest 2nd Street shop to Hokudai. They also provide delivery service of bulky items to your home.

* there are also 100 yen shops, Homac (Home Improvement store), Sports Items Mall, Supermarket, Media Shop around this area. Perhaps the best area to buy everything you need as a beginner.

3) Hokudai ISC (International Student Center)

Sometimes graduated students want to give away their things and the will advertise what they want to let on the ISC notice board. Just check it out.

4) Flea Market
The flea market is usually held between April and November. Futons, kitchen utilities, etc. are sold at very low price and can be bargain. Locations and dates can be check out in the periocal What's on Sapporo issued monthly by Sapporo Communication Plaza. For website version of the periodical, click here.

5) Bicycle

The most important thing is bicycle. But to ride a bicycle in the Hokkaido's magnificient winter is very dangerous even for professional :D. The new bicycle costs around 10,000 yen to 20,000 yen. But the second hand bicycle can be bought at half price or FREE!

1- Go to second hand shop or sometimes Hokudai COOP (Seikyou) will sell it in front of Clark Hall. Generally costs about 5,000 yen.

2- Around March and September every year, Hokudai COOP will distribute / give away free bicycles (which were collected by Sapporo City Hall) to Hokudai students with COOP card (check my post on how to apply COOP card). Just check out the chance on ISC notice board.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Online Map and Road Navigation

While surfing the information about Furano (the famous city for flower farms)....

Finally I got the English version of tourist spots map in Hokkaido .

And also Rest Spot for driver called 道の駅 (michi no eki)

For those who don't have car navigator, don't worry here is the solution

Enjoy your summer..

[Malay] Beribadat di Perantauan

Sila lawati pautan berikut sebagai panduan menunaikan ibadat di perantauan atau ketika bermusafir seperti permasalahan puasa, sembahyang dan sebagainya..

Thursday, July 24, 2008

rental car

Wanna get away from hectic life? Let's drive!

I found this link is useful for car rental --
and the important thing is "It is in English!!"..yeah! fit me!

Generally, they offer cheaper price than at the on-the-station-rental.
But make sure to make reservation 2,3 days before the actual rental day.

I once rented a latest version of Nissan Bluebird Slyphy for about 5,000 yen per day. The normal price is actually around 9,000 yen per day. Save a BIT, huh! :D
It was really nice and I am satisfied with the service.

Try it out!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

beware of these HARAM-related kanji

beware of the following kanji/writing in what you eat (will be updated)

strictly forbidden

豚 (buta) pig
酒 (sake) japanese alcohol

ポーク (pooku) pork
ラード (raado) lard *fat from pork
ハム (hamu) ham *pork slice
ベーコン (beekon) bacon
アルコール (arukooru) alkohol
ラム (ramu) ram *a kind of alcoholic product which is widely used in ice-cream
ワイン (wain) wine
ビール (biiru) beer
ウイスキー (uisukii) whiskey

depending on their original constituents or otherwise stated

動物 (doubutsu) animal
肉 (niku) meat
牛 (ushi) cow *BUT 牛乳 (gyuunyuu) means cow milk :)
鶏 (tori) chicken/bird
鳥 (tori) chicken/bird
乳化剤 (nyuukazai) emulsifier

チキン (chikin) chicken
コンソメ (konsome) consomme
ショートニング (shooteningu) shortening
ゼラチン (zerachin) gelatin
レシチン (reshichin) lecithin

** sometimes word 大豆 (daizu - soy bean) or 植物 (shokubutsu - plant) is written in a bracket next to food chemicals such as emulsifier, shortening, gelatin and lecithin which shows that those are synthesized from plant sources. In that case, they are safe to be consumed.

useful link--> halal list by kmii


Getting Japan Driving License

*I followed the procedures as a Malaysian in Sapporo, different citizenship or place might follow the different procedures.
** please bring together someone who can speak Japanese to reduce problems.

Step 1 - JPJ confirmation letter. [For Malaysian]

If you have renewed your driving license once, please ask JPJ to issue a letter which describes when your license was first issued. You will have to pay RM10 for the letter. (I asked my sister in Malaysia to do that and mailed me the letter)

Make sure that
- your license is still valid at the time you want to take the Japanese driving test.
- for the new driver, you obtained your first driving license 3 months in your country before coming to Japan.

** Some of my Malaysian friends did not apply for the JPJ lettter and still they passed the Step 3 below. So, it depends on your luck! Sometimes the officer does not request this document. But make sure that the issued or renewed date on your current license is 3 months prior to your arrival to Japan.

Step 2 - License Translation to Japanese.

Go to any Japan Automobile Federation.
For Sapporians, take the subway Touho line (blue line) to the last station named Fukuzumi. At the station, there will be the signboard to go to JAF, Sapporo Branch. Here you don't need someone to speak Japanese with the officer. You can go by your own.

Click JAF for the required documents for the translation.
Please bring together all your previous expired license slits (if you still have them) and the JPJ letter (from Step 1) to support you application.

The process takes about 30 minutes only.

Step 3 - Registering test. [In case of Teine Driving Test Center, Hokkaido]

Here is the place --> (in Japanese)

Go to counter 6 to register your test. Pass all the following documents to the officer.
a- your passport and your previous expired passport(s)
b- alien registration card
c- 1 photo (taken within 6 months)
d- the translation from JFA (from Step 2)

The officer will ask you to wait. In my case, she asked me to wait for an hour. After an hour, I went back to the counter again and she asked several questions about our driving experience and documentation. If you don't have complete supporting documents such as previous expired password(s), please be prepared to cheat :). But if you are could not convince the officer, you may have to involved your country embassy to support your application later on.

After the officer satisfied with the documents, she will askyou to pay about Y2,800 at cashier, taking vision test and return back to the counter.

For vision test, you are tested for 4 symbols (up, down, right, left) and colours (blue, red, yellow) which takes only 1 minute.

Then, she will bring you the test room. you will be asked 10 pictured-objective question which are extremely easy. But make sure you read the question properly. I think the pass point is 7/10. Mark "O" for correct answer and "X" for wrong answer.

She will tell you your result immediately. If you passed, you have to book for the driving test schedule. You can choose to have a test with Automatic Transmission (AT) or Manual Transmission (MT). If you choose MT, you can drive both AT and MT in Japan.

Step 3 process takes about 2 hours.

Step 4 - Training

I recommend you to try and practice at the test circuit. In Teine Driving Test Center, the circuit is open for Y1,000 per hour using your own car. The opening schedule is

6.00 am - 8 am (weekdays from April to October)
5.00 pm - 7 pm (weekdays whole year)

Step 5 - Be idiot

At first the test officer will explain you how to drive, where to give signal and so on theoretically on the map on his table. If you think your Japanese is not strong enough, please bring someone who can translate for you.

Then, he will bring you to the car. At first, he will drive and show several important points and place on the actual circuit.

Now, it is your turn to start the test. You can read other websites to get tips how to pass the test. But for me, I suggest that you are better to be the most idiot as you can. Exaggerate all of your action. Don't show your F1 driving skills and your confidence. Show him that you are always alert when driving.

When the test is over, the officer will comment your driving but does not telling the result yet. You have to go to counter 6 again to wait for the result.

If you passed, you have to pay another Y1,800 for getting the Japan driving license. The license will be ready in the same day. If you failed, please repeat Step 3 (without vision test and objective test). Yes! you have to pay again for the next driving test schedule.

Step 5 process takes about 5 hours.

Useful links
Japan Automotif Federation

ganbatte kudasai!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Importing/Bringing Medication into Japan for Personal Use

1 April, 2004

Compliance and Narcotics Division,
Pharmaceutical and Food Safety Bureau,
Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare

  • An importer of medication (drug, quasi-drug, cosmetic or medical device) for business purposes needs a License from the Minister of Health, Labour and Welfare under the Pharmaceutical Affairs Law.

  • There is no need for a License for individual's importing or bringing medication into Japan for personal use. An individual can import the following restricted quantities of medication without special procedures. Medication imported or brought into Japan for personal use must not be sold or given to others.

    1. Drug or Quasi-drug: Up to 2 months' supply

    • Poisonous drug, Powerful drug or Prescription Drug : Up to 1 month's supply
    • Drug or Quasi-drug for External Use (excluding Poisonous drug, Powerful drug or prescription
      drug) : Up to 24 pieces

      Note )
      Quasi-drug :

      Quasi-drug is a product that has restricted purpose of use,has a mild action on the human body, and is not categorized as a medical device.
      e.g.) hair tonics, bath preparations, etc.
      For external use :
      e.g.) ointments, eye drops etc.

    2. Cosmetic : Up to 24 pieces per item

    3. Medical Device (for home use only) : 1 set
    e.g.) Electric massager
Import Prohibited or RestrictedDrugs

  • Import of stimulants (Amphetamine, Metamphetamine, etc.) is prohibited by the Stimulants Control law.
  • An importer of Narcotics, Psychotropic drugs needs a license from the Director-General Regional Bureau of Health and Welfare under the Narcotics and Psychotropics Control Law.An contact point for the application of the Narcotics Control Department of the Bureau.
  • In accordance with CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species), import of drugs including the following substances is restricted.
    1. Rhinoceros horn
    2. Musk
    3. Tiger bones
    4. Fel Ursi etc.

Further Reference
  • If you need to bring more than the restricted quantity of medication into Japan for personal use, and you plan to arrive at one of the following airports, please contact the following Regional Bureau of Health and Welfare during business hours

    ( Monday to Friday, 09 : 30 to 17: 45 ) :
    • Tokyo (Narita) International Airport (Kantou-Shinetsu office)
      Phone : +81-48-740-0800
      Fax : +81-48-601-1336
    • Kansai International Airport (Kinki office)
      Phone : +81-6-6942-4096
      Fax : +81-6-6942-2472
    • Naha International Airport (Okinawa branch office)
      Phone : +81-98-854-2584
      Fax : +81-98-834-8978
  • Regarding Narcotics, Psychotropic drugs, Stimulants etc., please contact the following office by Facsimile :
    • Charge of Opium of Compliance and Narcotics Division, Pharmaceutical and Food Safety Bureau, Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare
      Fax : +81-3-3501-0034
  • Regarding CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species)., please contact the following office :

    source : forwarded email through mailing list

Friday, July 11, 2008

monthly transportation pass (teiki - 定期)

I am currently living close to Gakuen Mae Station (学園前駅). The one way trip using subway to Kita 12 jou Station (北12条駅) costs me 240 Yen. If I use the route every day, the total cost will be about 10,000 Yen per month. Ee....takai yo! Yeah, there is the solution for regular user of Sapporo Transportation System (Bus, Subway, Train).

I bought a subway pass which cost me 5,760 Yen for a month. It would be slightly cheaper if one buy for 3 months pass. The pass price depends on the distance between two commuting points/terminal/station and also user category (worker, student, etc.)

Where to buy? at Odori subway station (also at specified stations, ask the subway staff)
Need to show identification card i.e. student card, alien registeration card
Bring cash money too

here is the website (in Japanese)
benri na...

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

car disposal (haisha - 廃車)

I sent my previous 1991 Mitsubishi Minica for disposal at :

Sapporo Parts Rainbow House
Sapporo-shi Higashi-ku Kita 25 Jou Higashi 21 Choume 1-5
website (Japanese)


The person-in-charge is Sasaki-san. She is very helpful and nice. She was okay with my bad Japanese skill :D. I think as long as we have all the required documents, nothing to worry about.

Since its shaken will due in the next two months, I got the tonnage tax proportion back (about 2,500 Yen.
Due to miscommunication, I thought I have to pay 15,000 Yen for the disposal process.
BUT, actually the company gave me that amount for buying the scrap car and the amount of remaining tax proportion period of the shaken. I was really happy to get some money back. The paying price depends on the condition of the car.

The company will take care of all process, and terminate the tax record from the City Hall. In order to do that, just prepare the following items to be handed over:

1- Car Inspection Certificate (jidoushakensa shou -自動車検査証)- called shaken
2- Compulsory Insurance Receipt (jibaiseki hoken shoumeisho - 自賠責保険証明書)
3- Recycle Ticket (kaitai shoumeitou - 解体証明書等) - this ticket/receipt showed that the recyle fee for the car has been paid.
4- Stamp (inkan - 印鑑)
5- Stamp Registration Certificate (inkan touroku shoumeisho - 印鑑登録証明書)

The car can be brought in ourselves to the company or the company person can take them from our home. In either case, confirm with the company first.

When deregistration is completed, the company will send a notification postcard which shows that everything is settled.


p/s : really happy to get some money back..kaimono shimashou!!

International Food Store - Carot (キャロット)

I found Carot (キャロット) store is pretty amazing. They sell various international food ingredients where it is hardly to find it another stores/malls. Here you can find various Asian ingredients, dried condiments/spices, flour, frozen seafood (from outside Japan) , Western cheese etc. Just stop by and you will surprise with what they have.

Sapporo stores website (Japanese)

Chuo-ku Kita 9 Jou Nishi 21 Choume

Chuo-ku Minami 6 Jou Nishi 11 Choume

Toyohira-ku Nakajima 1 Jou 3 Choume

Higashi-ku Kita 26 Jou Higashi 8 Choume

Atsubetsu-ku Atsubetsu Chuo 3 Jou 4 Choume 6 Ban 2

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

feel sick..don"t know which hospital to go?

For Japanese non-speaking foreigners, it would be very difficult to deal with many procedures in Japan. If suddenly you feel sick, it might be difficult for you to explain your simptons and sickness to doctor. Beware that not all medical doctors can speak English. Thus, I recommend you to the Sapporo City General Hospital (Ichi Ritsu Sapporo Byouin - 市立札幌病院->Japanese website). There are volunteers in the hospital who can speak main world languages (English, Korean, French, Russian, Chinese etc). They will help you through the process from registration until you get your medicine prescription. When you enter the main entrance of the hospital, ask the Info counter person about the one who can speak your preferred language. For the female Muslim, you can request for a female doctor to treat you.

Location : Chuo-ku Kita 11 Nishi 13 Sapporo (札幌市中央区北11西13), near to Souen Train Station (桑園駅)and Souen AEON Jusco Mall.

Do not forget to bring you National Health Insurance card!!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

MADO Japanese Free Lesson

There is a group of Japanese teacher volunteer in Sapporo which named themselves as MADO who provide free Japanese Lesson. Their website is here.

The lesson is held every Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, from 1 to 5 pm except on specific National Holiday. The place is in Conference Room, 2nd Floor of Sapporo International House, just behind Gakuen Mae Subway Station (学園前駅)。

Today I joined the event for the first time. They assigned one volunteer to each student. The lesson can be customized according to the Japanese level of the student. It is a one to one lesson. Great! Even if one does not know anything, the teacher will teach patiently and very helpful. I was with Satou-sensei, a housewife. She is very very nice. We are in the same age..she is funny too :)

Do come and join the group, I hope I can improve my Japanese conversation skill. Ganbareyou!

Friday, July 4, 2008

shaken (車検) renewal

Shaken needs to be renewed every two years. My car which I got yesterday will due its shaken in two days. So I just bring it to Eneos petrol station at Kita 19 Nishi 4. Make sure the following documents are ready:
1- Inspection certificate (shakesho - 車検書)
2- Compulsory Insurance certificate (jibaiseki hoken - 自賠責保険) - get this from the previous owner
3- The latest yearly tax receipt (nouzei shoumeisho - 納税証明書) - get this from the previous owner. If he already paid the tax, and the recipt is lost, you have to pay extra charge about Yen3,000 to request for the new receipt)

The whole shaken price depends on your car engine transmission. For 2.0 cc class, the basic price is about Yen80,000. This does not include some part which might need to be repaired. You just give the car to the shop and they will handle everything. They will call you when the new shaken is ready. It takes about a day if you let the shop to handle it.

You can also renew the shaken by yourself. Since I don't know Japanese and my knowledge about car is nearly null, I just bring it to the shop.

*If your shaken period is going to finish, I suggest that you make a reservation at least one month earlier at the shaken shop/station. Some shop give a price reduction about Yen5,000 on the prior reservation.

medical check up (kenkou shindan - 健康診断)

For Hokudai students, there is free medical check up provided by Health Center in April. Only in April, so please watch out the date which will be announced at your faculty. I suggest you (I mean Hokudai students) should take this opportunity since later perhaps you may need the medical certificate for other purposes for example applying for academic course, job and moving to the new house where this certificate is one of the required documents.

I wrote this entry because I missed the chance and I need to give the medical certificate to my new house management. TPublish Postoday I went to on of the medical check up center. click here to its webpage (in Japanese). The location is at 5th Floor, Sapporo Erupu Plaza, Kita 8 Nishi 3. There are fluent English speaking nurses who can help you through the process. Don't worry, they are really nice. I made the following check up :
- blood pressure
- weight and height measurement
- hearing and sight test
- chest check
- urine test
- x-ray
which cost overall for about Yen2,200 (Next year I will for sure take the free medical check-up at Hokudai Health Center)
I also did blood type test which cost another Yen900 because I forgot what type of blood I have :)

The report will be ready in a week. ki wo tsukete!


Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Change Ownership

My friend want to give way his Toyota Corona 2.0 to me. So we have to transfer the ownership of the car.

MAKE SURE before you change the ownership,
1- the current owner MUST handover to you the following documents
- recycle fee receipt
- inspection certificate (shaken- 車検)
- compulsory insurance certificate (jibaiseki hoken - 自賠責保険)
2- the current owner give you the latest yearly tax receipt (nouzei shoumeisho - 納税証明書). The tax should be paid before the end of May every year. If he wants to give away the car to you on June, MAKE SURE he already paid the tax otherwise you will face BIG PROBLEM when you want to renew the shaken.)

In case you and the current owner want to do it yourself, make sure the following documents are ready :

From current owner
1- Alien Registeration card (gaikokujin touroku shoumeisho - 外国人登録証明書)
2-Current valid inspection certificate (shaken - 車検)
3- Stamp and Stamp certificate (inkan & inkan touroku shoumeisho - 印鑑 & 印鑑登録証明書)

From owner-to-be
1- Alien Registration card (gaikokujin touroku shoumeisho - 外国人登録証明書)
2- Stamp and Stamp certificate (inkan & inkan touroku shoumeisho - 印鑑 & 印鑑登録証明書)
3- Prepare some cash around Yen3,000
4- In case the car plate is not Sapporo (札幌) number, you need a new plate which cost around Yen2,000.
5- Parking certificate (shako shoumeisho - 車庫証明書)

Bring the documents to Sapporo Transport Office (unyu shikyoku 運輸支局) at Higashi-ku Kita 28 Nishi 1 (東区北28条西1丁目). Please bring some one who can speak Japanese to help you.

It takes only about 15 minutes to finish the process. You will receive shaken with your name on it. That's all.

*for Kei-car or yellow plate care, the process is quite different and at the different office.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

mosque and muslim society

In hokkaido, even the muslim community is really small, but we do have a strong relation between each other. Here is the web site of the community Hokkaido Islamic Society (HIS).

It is actually a small two-levels white building which is marked with "HIS" and マスジド. Among the activities are Arabic language, Quran recitation, Quran reading class for kids and Friday prayer (12.15 pm).

Address :
Sapporo-shi Kita-ku Kita 14 Jyou Nishi-3 Choume 7-Ban

updated June 18, 2008
I just found a list of mosque in Japan. click here
This includes Sapporo Mosque and Otaru Mosque in Hokkaido.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Parking Ceritificate (shakosho - 車庫書)

For white plate car, parking certificate is a required document for ownership registration. Here are the procedures which I followed

1) I went to Police Station to get the form for Shakosho for free. It was a set of 6 papers.
2) I searched the parking space. The parking space must be around 2 km from your house.
3) properly filled out the first four papers and stamp clearly on every page with your inkan/hanko.
4) Drew the map of the parking space on the 5th paper. The parking space owner may provide you the map of the space. I just used Japan Google Map and stick it on the paper.
5) Asked the parking space owner to stamp (inkan/hanko) on the last paper.
6) Sent the completed form to the Police station again.
7) Paid 2,200Yen for the processing fee. The counter person gave the date when I can collect the shakosho which was 5 days later.
8) I picked up the shakosho certificate and paid another 550Yen for the certificate.
9) There was a parking sticker which was given together with the certificate to be sticked at the rear glass window.
10) The shakosho is valid for only 30 days. Thus, you have to manage your time to register your car.

when you search for the parking space, make sure the following term
1- charge fee for drawing the map
2- the deposit
3- monthly fee
4- snow clearance fee on winter season
I got to pay 2 and 3 only. Some company charge all 1, 2, 3 and 4.
I also found a company which charge the monthly fee only.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

coop card (seikyou kaado)

I think all Hokudai students must have this card. The card integrates two functions (as far as I know), as a prepaid card and credit card.

1) Prepaid Card
- There is a machine in Hokudai Cafeteria/Coop branches around Hokudai where we can reload the Hokudai Coop Card with some amount of money for example 1000 yen, 2000 yen..etc
- With the virtual money in the Coop Card, we can use it when we buy anything from Hokudai Coop shops/cafeterias . The money will be deducted automatically from the Card. For me, I can get rid of 1 yen coins from my wallet :D

2) Credit Card
- The credit limit is 100,000 yen
- Can be used worldwide
- Usually when we use it at any shops, the cashier will ask for how many times we want to pay the price/installment.
- no extra charge/interest for 2 times installment
- but if 3 times installment or more is chosen, be ready for the interest/charge which will be applied

How to apply?
- Go to the main Seikyou building (next to Clark Hall building, they called Kuraku Kaikan) and ask the person in charge for "SEIKYOU KAADO"
- bring together Alien Registeration Card and Student ID card
- fill out the form
- pay 1500 yen (1000 yen for Seikyou membership which will be returned back after graduation and 500 yen for temporary Seikyou card)
- wait for the Seikyou Card delivery to home address (about 2 weeks)
- return the temporary Seikyou card to the counter person and get 500 yen back
- ready to use!

Friday, June 6, 2008

Warung Jawa, Sapporo

You can find Halal meat, chicken as well as Asian ingredients here. The shop is divided into two sections, a cooking ingredients part and Indonesian restaurant part.

Address : Warung Jawa, Underground Zeus Building, Kita 14 Nishi 3, Kita-ku, Sapporo
Tel : 011-708-6880 ( Mrs Widya, she can speak Indonesian, English and Japanese)

北海道札幌市北区北14条西3丁目 ゼウスビル地下1F


For more info and map click here (Japanese)

Access : By 5 minutes walk to the north from Nanboku Line Subway Kita 12-jo. The shop is also located at the same road as the Sapporo Mosque.

online halal shops

online halal and asian shop (in English)
1) baticrom
2) tulip internationa
3) azhar halal foods

How to order?
Fill your online cart with what ever you want, even frozen stuffs.
Provide your home address.
Then the shop will send you the package through cash-on-delivery service.
When the package reach your home, just pay on the spot.


Malay term in baticrom store :

asam jawa - tamarind - タマリンド
kulit kayu manis - cinnamon- シナモン
serai - lemon grass - レモングラス
kulit popia - sping roll shell-春巻シェル
daun pandan - pandanus leaf
daun limau purut - lime leaf
daun pisang - banana lead
jantung pisang - banana blossom
kurma - dates
roti canai segera - paratha
santan - coconut milk/powder - ココナッツミルク/粉
biji selasih - basil seed
kunyit - turmeric - ウコン
jintan - cumin - クミン
halia - ginger - しょうが
lengkuas - galangal
daun sup - coriander - コリアンダー
belacan - shrimp paste
cuka - vinegar - 酢
buah pelaga - cardamon- カルダモン
ketumbar - coriander seeds - コリアンダー種
tepung pulut - glutinous flour - もち粉
tepung beras - rice flour-米粉

others that might be useful
bunga kantan - ginger bud
daun kesum - laksa leaves / Vietnamese mint
buah keras - candlenuts

* rempah Melayu dalam English dan 日本語

Taj Mahal Restaurant

Want to try gourmet from the country of curry? Taj Mahal Restaurant group has more than 2 branches in Sapporo. The restaurant claimed that they use halal poultry, meat and ingredients in their cooking.
For more info click here (English).
Don't forget to print the 10% coupon from the website ^_^;

Check the website for their offered menu.

* no pork in their menu, but beer and wine are sold.

Thai Mirch Restaurant

Halal Thai and Indian food in Sapporo under one roof. The restaurant claimed that they use halal poultry, meat and ingredient in their recipes.

For map and more info click here (Japanese).

Thai Mirch (タイ ミルチ) *Under Susukino shopping arcade roof, 2nd floor.
Tanukinouji 4 Choume, Minami 2 Kita 4, Chuou-ku, Sapporo
Tel : 011-221-4681
Open : Every day (except Sunday) 11:00~15:00/17:00~23:00

Food Selection : Thai (tom yam, Thai-style fried noodle and rice) Indian (Nan, briyani rice, various curry)
*no pork on the menu, but beer & wine are sold.

Updated Nov 10, 2009 : The Thai Mirch restoran was closed and being replaced by a new branch of Taj Mahal, at the same place..just change the BRAND.

There is also a small stall below the restoran which sells Halal Kebab. So more choices huh!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

hokudai international student center

Hokudai International Student Center (ryuugakusei sentaa - 留学生センター) is the center for foreign students to meet together, ask about anything, learn Japanese and etc. There are staffs who can speaks English, Chinese and of course Japanese. Here is the website.

I am attending Kanji Class at the center. Most of the times, I found many useful information at the bulletin board for example
- sightseing tour group
- giving away / selling out stuffs from previous students at low price
- current enforced laws/regulations in Japan

For foreign studens, this is the must-go place in Hokudai :)
Meet friends there!

Sunday, June 1, 2008

MISA : Malaysian in Sapporo

Currently there are about 25 Malaysians student studying in Hokkaido Univ in various fields and levels. We are united under the group of MISA (Malaysian in Sapporo). As a pretty small group we enjoy various activities such as eating, eating and eating..hahahha. If you are interested in our culture or country and also eating :) , don"t hesitate to contact me...

personal stamp (inkan - 印鑑)

Personal stamp might be useful for important matters in Japan such as buying a car, bank account etc. Where can you make it?

1- Making stamp

I just went to the key shop just in front of Hokudai Main Entrance and direct opposite to 7-eleven. I make my stamp with my name in katakana. It cost about 700Yen and takes only 15 minutes to be ready.

2- Stamp Registration

Then I brought the stamp to Ward office (yakusho-役所) together with my Alien Card (gaikokujin touroku shoumeisho - 外国人登録証明書). After they saved the shape of my stamp and entered my information into their database, they issued a Stamp Registration Card (inkan touroku shou - 印鑑登録証). I dont remember how much I paid for the process, may be around 500Yen. This card is important in order to get Stamp Registration Certificate (inkan touroku shoumeisho - 印鑑登録証明書). Stamp Registration Certificate is a required document for buying/selling a car.

3- How to get Stamp Registration Certificate

Since now you have your Stamp Card, if in any case you require the Stamp Certificate, you just need to show the Stamp Card at Ward Office and request for the Stamp Certificate. 350Yen for one issued Certificate.

taihen ne?!
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