Make Your Own Hanko (Japanese Seal) at Don Quixote

make your own hanko japanese seal

Hello people. It’s Mr. Wada back on duty! As I’ve explained about hanko (Japanese seal) in the previous post, it is one thing you must have in Japan. For the apartment contract, creating a bank account, these all require a hanko! It is available at hanko stores but if you aren’t sure/confident dealing with your Japanese, here is some reference. Let’s try make your own hanko at Don Quixote!

Make Your Own Hanko at Donki!

Don Quijote (Donki) is sort of department store like I have mentioned before. There are Donki stores pretty much everywhere in Japan. And some stores have the hanko machines that you can design and make your original hanko!

OK, let’s get started. NOT all Donki stores have this hanko machine. You should ask staff at the store if you don’t see it.


It’s a touch screen. Tap the button in the center to start.


Select Design

Pick a basic design. It suggests to pick the first one for Mitoein, second one for Ginkoin, and the third one for Jituin. Check this post for understanding differences.


Type Name

Type your name. You can use Roman alphabet as well. Tap ‘NEXT’ to go to the next step.


Select Font

Select a font you would like. Tap ‘NEXT’ to the next step.
*For a security reason the design is not displayed…


Edit Design

You can adjust thickness and layout. After editing either thickness or layout, it comes back to the same page. If you would like to make more changes, tap ‘EDIT’ again. FYI, it is suggested that text (your name) should NOT touch the circle. If it does, edit layout and adjust. When you are done, tap ‘NEXT’ to the next page.


Editing thickness of the text.


Editing layout.


Select Hanko

Now choose a hanko from the list. Actual hanko(s) can be seen just above the machine.


I’m going for this one.


Select one on the screen and tap ‘PURCHASE’.



Insert money


Take your hanko and tap ‘taken’ on the screen.


Do the Cutting

Now set your hanko into the cutter and lock.


It starts the cutting.


Estimated waiting time for different sizes.



(After minutes) alright it’s done. Open the cover, unlock the holder and take the hanko out. Now you got your own hanko! Welcome to Japan.


Tap ‘COMPLETE’ to end.



How do you find it? It actually would be nice for a souvenir as well. Why not get one for your friends or family?

See you around!

Things You Should Know About Hanko (Japanese Seal)

Hola amigos. Yo soy senor Wada! I would like to share things you should know about hanko this time.

Things You Should Know About Hanko (Japanese Seal)

When it comes to start your life in the country of samurai, one of the things you must do is get a hanko (Japanese seal). We don’t sign contract but stamp. For the apartment contract, creating a bank account, making IDs, any serious stuff requires hanko(s).

Types of Hanko

Here’s one thing you should know about hanko first. There are different types of hankos. We use them in different uses.


Jitsuin (実印)

Jitsuin is a registered seal at the city office, etc., so it has a legal power.


Ginkoin (銀行印)

Ginkoin is a seal for bank stuff.


Mitomein (認印)

Mitomein is a seal for general uses like receiving packages, etc.


Shachihata (シャチハタ)

Shachihata is an instant seal. It is NOT supposedly hanko but can be used for things like receiving packages which don’t require legal signatures.


So What Hanko to Get/Use?

So which one to get, you ask? Actually except shachihata, any hanko would be it. If one is registered at the city office, that’s a jitsuin, if used for the bank, that’s a ginkoin, or if neither of the two mentioned, that could be a mitomein. Actually, you could just use the same hanko for all purposes. However, there’s one risk you should know.


Risk for Using the Same Hanko for Multi Purposes

If the same hanko was used for all and you lost it, you would lose access to all as well since it is like the key. So in order to lessen/split risks, it is better to have several hankos for different purposes. In reality many people use just the same hanko though, well, that’s really on your own responsibility.


Where to Buy Hanko?

It is available at hanko stores or online stores.



Hope it helps.

See you around!