If the huge number of amazing indie games hitting the Nintendo Switch eShop every week isn't enough, there are also a host of games on the Japanese eShop that you can access on your Switch. One of the great things about the Nintendo Switch eShop is that you can create additional accounts to enable you to buy games from other eShop regions. The Japanese Switch eShop not only has region-exclusive games, but often receives certain games much earlier than the rest of the world.
Getting credit registered to your Japanese Nintendo Account is probably the most difficult barrier in doing this, but this helpful guide will point you in the right direction and you'll be enjoying early-release and exclusive Japanese games on your Western Switch in no time.
Before buying Japanese Switch eShop credit, you'll need to set up a Japanese region Nintendo Account in order to get access to that country's eShop. Done that? Then read on to find out where to find Japanese Switch eShop credit.
Don't miss our guide on Where to buy Nintendo Switch eShop Credit, Gift Cards And Online Membership.
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Japan - Nintendo Switch eShop Credit
Once you have your Japanese account, you can easily buy Japanese eShop credit for your Switch from the retailers listed below in a variety of denominations. The code will be sent directly to you, so no waiting by the mailbox for a pesky physical card to be delivered!
Our top choice for picking up Japanese eShop credit is Playasia, an Asia-focused retailer that displays all of its product pages in English and allows customers to purchase items in their own currencies. Those of you who import physical Japanese games will no doubt be familiar with Playasia already, and picking up digital credit is just as easy.
You can grab your preferred amount of credit below. (We've displayed prices in USD here, but you can also pay in GBP, EUR, and many more).
Another solid choice is the Japanese version of Amazon. The downside here is that you'll need to navigate through some Japanese text (translation options are available and the site looks just like western Amazon stores, so regular Amazon shoppers should get on just fine).
We'd stick with Playasia if you can just for simplicity's sake, but here are all the options available via Amazon JP:
If you're looking to buy European or US credit, check out the best places to find those in our guide to buying eShop credit in those regions. Let us know which eShop games you feel are worth spending your virtual cash on with a comment below.
Looking for more? Check out our other Switch buying guides:
- Nintendo Switch Micro SD Cards - Best Cards & Cheapest Prices
- Where To Buy Nintendo Switch eShop Credit, Gift Cards And Online Membership
- Best Switch Portable Chargers, Batteries And Power Banks
- Best Nintendo Switch Wired And Wireless Headsets
- Best Nintendo Switch Controllers
- Best Nintendo Switch Accessories
Time to buy that lovely SD Gundam G Generation Cross Rays season pass.
If those prices are correct then the 3000 yen card is best value
There's a cheaper way to get Japanese eshop credit if you fulfil the requirements. You need both:
1) A credit or debit card that doesn't charge (or charge much) for foreign currency transactions
2) A 3DS with the region set to Japan (either because it's a legit Japanese 3DS or because it's been modded to)
The 3DS eshop supports payment cards internationally and doesn't do the same checks the Switch one does when adding a card. In other words, if you create a Japanese Nintendo Network ID on the 3DS, link it to a Japanese Nintendo Account and then top it up on the 3DS using your foreign credit or debit card, you can then spend it on the Switch eshop.
Now, because you'd be paying directly in Japanese yen, it's often going to be cheaper than PlayAsia generally as they inflate the prices. However, be aware of foreign transaction fees if your bank or card provider charge them, as that might reduce or cancel out any potential saving.
In the UK, there are an increasing number of bank accounts (and associated debit cards) and credit cards that don't charge for transactions made in foreign currencies except at ATMs, so that's definitely worth looking into. You can have multiple bank accounts too, so don't feel like you're tied to one over another.
I live in Japan, and I have never seen the 1000 yen cards. I find this very suspicious. Are they still being made?
@Heavyarms55 I bought One from offgamers some time ago 2018 and it worked.
Silly question... can I do the opposite of this? Amazon (US) no longer lets me buy gifts cards on my Japanese Switch, so I have to trick my poor mom into buying them for me. And because Paypal in Japan is like "oh, you want to send money to your poor old mother back in the mother land, eh? We'll just skim something like 40% [not an exact value] off of that for you because we care", I basically have to wait until my birthday, and I only have ONE (1) OF THOSE per year!
@Mambitos Yeah I believe once they are printed they are good to redeem, but I haven't seen one in the stores since I have lived here. Not that I can remember anyway. I'll have to look around more. Maybe I am just that oblivious.
@Heavyarms55: Hey, fellow living in Japan person! 🤓 You're right: there's no physical ¥1000 cards anymore. (There used to be, though! Back in the Wii/3DS era...)
These days, ¥1500 is the most common/lowest valued physical card available, but at 7-11 (and possibly other conbinis?), you can purchase ¥1000, ¥2000, ¥3000 & ¥5000 codes using the copy machine!
@kayleedayo Ah, makes sense that there were smaller cards more often years ago. And I never thought to check that machine. I usually just buy a big card, it's not like the unused money after a purchase expires or something.
@Heavyarms55: Same here! I always wait until one of those promotions comes along where you get an extra ¥500 or something & buy a bunch of credit at once.
There's a easier way. Buy the physical Japanese nintendo switch games & hit the plus signing the switch & it will see if the game is eligible for nintendo coins / points. For example if a game is released say 6/22/2022 it will be good until that next date. I have yen in the eshop with out having to buy a eshop card. I like buying physical copies of games regardless of the region.
Happy Gaming! (^~^)
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