A reader asked if I could write a post about Suica card refunds. First of all there are different kinds of refunds. Refunds for Shinkansen e-tickets, Green Seat Reservations, Commute Plans are handled in Suica App. A refund of the Apple Pay Suica card SF (Stored Fare) balance is covered here, but beware as there are major hurdles. JR East recommends using up the balance instead of refunding because the Suica card cannot be used again after a refund. You have to delete the dead Suica card from Wallet, if you ever want to use Suica again you have to create a new one.
A nearly depleted Suica can be safely deleted from Wallet and added again only when needed. I think the JR East recommendation is the best choice especially if you plan to use Suica again.
The Suica refund requirements are:
- A Mobile Suica account: this is free but registration can only be done via the Japanese only Suica App
- Suica App (not SuicaEng)
- A Japanese bank account
- ¥220 refund processing fee for each Suica card refund
- Once you refund a Suica card it cannot be used again and has to be deleted from Wallet, your Mobile Suica account is also automatically deleted
If you have a Mobile Suica account and a Japanese bank the process is straight forward. Open Suica App, if you have multiple Suica cards choose the one you want the refund, tap on Ticket Purchase•Manage Suica, scroll to the bottom of the list and tap Suica Refund.
Scroll to the bottom of Terms and Conditions and tap Agree. In the next screen confirm the SF refund amount of the Suica card then tap next.
In the next few screens you enter your bank account information so have the information ready. In the first screen enter the first 3 katakana of the bank name and tap search, select bank name, enter the first katakana of the bank branch name and tap search, select the bank branch name, enter the bank account type, account number and account name and tap next. In the final screen confirm your information then tap Suica Refund.
Once completed Mobile Suica sends an email to your registered address, the bank transfer from JR East takes 2~4 weeks to process.