Unlike New Zealand, Japan has extremely crap interest rates for any term of bank investment. Long term, bulk, whatever, the interest rate is almost non existent. I think at our local bank it is 0.5 percent if you're lucky. In New Zealand at the moment I have money in a 24 month long term investment at 5% - still bollocksy crap in my opinion as used to be getting 8%.
When Shou was born we got hounded by the post office to register him in the 新学資保険 - Education Insurance Plan. There are a couple of plans - one for 200 man (2,000,000 yen) and one for 300 man (3,000,000). You can choose whether you want them to pay out in installments or in one bulk payment when your child turns 18.
We registered Shou's plan under hub's name but Ryu's under mine - as found out is a bit cheaper that way. Marina is uneligable due to knowing that she would need an operation from ultrasound in womb. Didn't have time to register her beforehand. We still asked but got turned down. We need to wait a full year after her operation and have a certificate from her doctor saying all is well in kidney and bladder camp Marina.
9,740 yen will be taken from my bank account every month for the next 18 years, equalling a total of 210 man or something. We get a bulk payment of 200 man back. The plan includes insurance so I guess we are paying 10 man for 18 years worth of insurance for Ryu - which is well cheap. The money doesn't grow, it isn't an inverstment per say. But, it is a way of getting a regular amount of savings for Ryu's tertiary education out of our hot little spending hands once a month. Out of sight out of mind.
Sending money back to NZ could be an option but then you have fluctuating currency rates, interest rates, pain in the ass rates, can't get money straight away pain in the ass rates rah rah. That said though I am thinking about setting Marina up with an account in NZ and just getting her insurance here. Hmmmmm. I have enough back home to finance her account but not enough to finance three and it costs money every time to send back to NZ.
So that's the insurance rant - and just to make you want to join even more... we got a free box of gladwrap and a plastic folder. Awesome.
Anyway, day was very boring. Walk with Chiemi, visit from post office lady who forget to get me to stamp one of the ninety nine places must stamp on yesterday's form, trip to supermarket, English in the afternoon, English in the evening and over and out Scotty.
Off for sushi with Coffee Chiemi tomorrow.
Later - Coffee Chiemi lent me four seasons of LOST. I watched the first serries ages ago and am well into the second. Must say it bloody annoys me about as much as Omorosa (sp??) off the Apprentice. Does my bloody head in.