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Japan is a fascinating country of economic and business prowess, rich culture, technical wizardry, spatial conundrums and contradictions. Destination Japan, a country in eastern Asia that occupies a chain of islands in the Pacific Ocean roughly parallel with the eastern coast of the Asia’s mainland.

JAPAN VISA EXEMPTION

Visitors to Japan must obtain a visa from one of the Japanese diplomatic missions unless they come from one of the visa-exempt countries. The Government of Japan currently allows citizens of 68 countries/territories to travel to Japan for tourism or business without having to obtain a visa.

They can stay up to a maximum of 90 days in Japan unless otherwise specified. Countries of the European Union and North America (including Mexico) are allowed to travel in Japan for 90 days without any paperwork. Some countries like Austria, United Kingdom, Ireland, Germany, Mexico, Liechtenstein, and Switzerland are allowed to apply for an extension of their stay for up to even 6 months.

For some countries, there are special rules. Citizens of Indonesia, Brunei, and Thailand are allowed a 15-day visa-free travel in Japan; while citizens of United Arab Emirates are allowed 30 days.

TYPES OF JAPAN VISA

Japan has many different visas. The best way to avoid spending frustrating hours in government immigration offices is to make sure to apply for the visa that fits your situation best. 

Temporary visitor´s visa

This visa is issued for people want to travel japan in short time but not come from one of Japanese visa exempt countries.

Read more: Japan Tourist Visa

Visiting relatives in Japan

Japan work visas

To live and work in Japan you will need to apply for a work visa. If you work as a journalist, for example, you will be issued a journalist visa.

Working Holiday visa

This visa allows a person between 18 and 30 to spend a year living and working part-time in Japan. This issued for citizens from Australia, U.K., Canada, France, Ireland, Germany, New Zealand.

Student visas for Japan

This visa is issued for student study abroad program or Japanese university.

Read more: Japan Student visa

Cultural activities visas

Japan offers cultural activities visas to serve foreigners involved in cultural or academic studies not covered by the student visa. Foreigners studying martial arts in Japan, for instance, are eligible for cultural visas.

Volunteer visas

Recipients of this visa must work for a registered charitable organization providing public services (The Red Cross, for example) and may not receive any payment for their work.

JAPAN VISA REQUIREMENTS

General Documents Required For Japan Visa

  • Valid passport
  • Two passport-size photos
  • Application forms (available through your Japanese consulate or embassy)
  • Proof that you possess financial means to support yourself while living in Japan
  • Proof of medical insurance
  • Proof of a return ticket or funds to purchase a return ticket to your country of origin

These documents are required for every visa application unless otherwise indicated. Apply for your visa at a Japanese embassy or consulate prior to leaving for Japan, and make sure you apply far enough in advance to leave time for processing.

Temporary visitor´s visa requirements: By far the easiest visa to apply for and to obtain, tourist visa applications require a valid passport, a visa application form and proof of a return ticket from Japan.

Japan work visa requirements:  you should obtain a Certificate of Eligibility from your sponsor company. Your employer must submit additional forms to the Immigration Bureau, including a registration form (tokibo tohan), profit-loss report (son-ekai keisansho) and general company information. You will have to provide your CV, degree, and employment contract as part of the application process.

Working Holiday visas requirements: To obtain a working holiday visa you will need to prove that you have sufficient funds to support yourself. You will need to submit a CV along with all other required documents. After arriving in Japan, you must register with the embassy of your home country.

Student visas for Japan requirements: Requirements are similar to those of the work visa, with the university taking the place of the employer.

Cultural activities visas requirements: In order to obtain a cultural visa you will need to submit proof of your cultural activities in addition to the commonly required items.

HOW TO APPLY FOR A JAPAN VISA

Normally, a Japan visa can be issued in 5 working days if all the requirements are met. However, there are certain cases which require referral to the government office in Japan. Such referral cases may take up to 2 months for results. Therefore, we recommend that you plan your trip early to avoid inconvenience of delay.

Step 1: Choose visa types

Determine the type of Japan Visa that you need to apply for

Step 2: Gather documents

Prepare all required documents for your application.

Step 3: Submit your visa application

Go to embassy or consulate to process your Japan Visa application.

Step 4: Wait for visa decision

Wait for the results of your Japan Visa application.

JAPAN VISA FEES

Fees must be paid for the issuance of visas. The fees are about 3,000 yen for a single-entry visa, 6,000 yen for a double-entry or multiple-entry visa, and 700 yen for a transit visa. Fees are collected in the currency of the country (region) in which the Embassy / Consulate General is located.

Single-entry: 3,000 yen / US$25
Double or multiple-entry: 6,000 yen / US$50
Transit visa: 600 yen / US $5

If the visa is not issued, no fees are required. The processing fees are needed in addition to the visa issuance fees in case the visa application is made through an approved agency by the Embassy / Consulate General of Japan.

Check with the nearest Consulate for further information.

JAPAN VISA VALIDITY

  • In general, a visa is only valid for one entry. A visa is valid for 3 months from the day of issuance. Therefore, entry into Japan should occur within this time frame.
  • A Multiple entry visa is valid for 1 to 5 years. Mulitiple entry visas can be issued to citizens of countries that Japan has bilateral agreements with and to visitors with business purposes.
  • A Double-Entry Transit visa is valid for 4 months and can be used twice (once on the way to your destination and once on the return trip) to complete a round trip.

JAPAN VISA PROCESSING TIME

It normally takes 5 working days to issue a visa (for example, if we accept a visa application on Monday, the visa will normally be issued the following Monday). It may take less time than it depending on the Embassy/Consulate General and the purpose of visit.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

1. Is it necessary to go to the Japanese Embassy / Consulate General by myself to apply for a visa?

There are three ways to apply for a visa: (1) the visa applicant him/herself goes directly to the Japanese Embassy / Consulate General, (2) the visa applicant writes a Letter of Proxy and get a proxy to go to the Japanese Embassy / Consulate General in his / her place, and (3) the visa applicant uses an accredited travel agent approved by the Japanese Embassy / Consulate General. However, depending on the circumstances in your country or region, there are cases that the documents should only be submitted by the applicant him/herself going to the Japanese Embassy/Consulate, or through an accredited travel agent. Check with the embassy or consulate to which you plan to apply before making the application.

2. Why was my visa application not accepted?

If
any of the following cases apply to you, your application may not be accepted.

    (1) Applications from persons holding
Japanese nationality

    (2) The application is made to the Japanese
Embassy / Consulate General outside your country (region) of birth or country
(region) of residence

    (3) You currently hold a valid visa or
re-entry permit

    (4) Your previous visa application to visit
Japan for a specific purpose was rejected and you reapply to visit Japan for
the same purpose within six months from the rejection

    (5) The visa application is already being
processed at a different Japanese Embassy / Consulate General

    (6) There are some errors or omissions in
the submitted documents

    (7) The period of validity or the visa
attachment space of your passport is insufficient

    (8) The application is made by a person who
does not have the qualifications to make a proxy application

    (9) An application for issuance of a
Certificate of Eligibility is still pending

3. How much extra validity do I need to have on my passport at the time of entry to Japan?

The relevant Japanese law does not have a specific regulation regarding this matter. However, if your passport is going to expire soon after you enter Japan, it will be necessary for you to renew or extend the validity of your passport at your country’s Embassy/Consulate-General in Japan, however, some of them may not have such a passport service. Therefore, you are strongly recommended to enter Japan on a passport which will be valid for longer than your planned period of stay.

4. I would like to visit Japan to marry my fiancé living in Japan. Which visa should I apply for?

If your purpose of trip is for marriage, you should apply for a “Temporary Visitor Visa.”

5. Is there an interview for Japan visa?

Unlike the application process for a US visa, a Japan visa doesn’t require personal interview; the Consul Office will make their decision purely based on the documents that you submit.

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