JIN 176: NTT Docomo Policy / Vodaphone

I read with interest your article in JIN 176 on NTT DoCoMo policy with respect to non-permanent residents. This is similar to , but in some ways not quite as harsh as , what appears to be Vodaphones policy in the UK regarding non-permanent residents. At this point I should say that my knowledge is based purely on the related experience of those who have been on the receiving end of this policy, however the starting point for NPR's under that policy seems to be that Vodaphone want all calls to be paid for in advance. However , it appears that if you discuss/argue with Vodaphone, depending on your status , they will give credit and allow direct debit from your bank account - but even then they generally require an advance deposit - this is variable, but a minimum of 150 pounds for domestic calls seems to apply. On top of that they need 300 pounds additional deposit for overseas calls ( not that most people would use the domestic provider for overseas calls - generally one would opt for a low cost carrier ). The main difference with Vodaphone compared with DoCoMo is the element of flexibility allowed - so if you have a good job with an established company you are likely to get better terms despite being an NPR - whereas if you are an overseas student ona one year vias you are unlikely to be considered for any credit terms ( which , after all is said and done , is what payment in arrears is). I don't know what their credit card policy is like but I am sure they will accept *advanced* payment by credit card. Although personally I would find being a victim of this policy irritating, from a business perspective I can understand both the NTT and the Vodaphone policies and they seem reasonable. This is similar to the annoying situation of banks being unwilling to lend to NPR's because of the unlikelihood of their being able to recover money from defaulters. In fact in some way it is refreshing to know that DoCoMo actually allow NPR customers a direct debit based credit facility without requiring a deposit equal to anticipated monthly useage - I am not sure I would be so generous. I think many of us as NPR's would agree that in general as we seem to be faced with a number of discrimatory situations in Japan - some are real, some are imagined. However, until such time as we grant extra territorial debt recovery rights for relatively small amounts of money , enforceable by the Japanese courts on behalf of Japanese legal persons, within our home countries, I think that the annoyances of which you write will continue to exist ( and I think I might prefer it that way rather than give the Japanese courts those sorts of rights :-) ) Cheers, Colin. The contents of, and any opinions expressed in, this e-mail are purely of personal nature and are to be in no way construed as those of the authors employers.