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Home > Immigration and Visa Information > Japan Immigration >Exemption of Visas




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Japan Immigration


Exemption of Visas

Visas are not required when applying for landing permission at a port of entry in Japan in the following cases:

A. Nationals of Countries with Reciprocal Visa Exemption Arrangements with Japan

As of December 1999, Japan had concluded general visa exemption arrangements with 60 countries, as shown in the accompanying table. Nationals of these countries holding valid passports can apply for landing permission for short-term stays for such purposes as sightseeing and business trips without acquiring a visa. However, cases involving paid activities in Japan are excluded. Also, visa exemption arrangements are not applicable in the case of stays exceeding the period of time stipulated in each arrangement. In such cases, it is necessary for foreigners to acquire a visa.

B. Those Having Obtained Re-entry Permission

If foreigners who already reside in Japan, having acquired a status of residence for a long-term stay, such as for work, wish to leave the country temporarily during the period for which they have received permission to stay in Japan, they can obtain a re-entry permit before departing Japan. This permit enables them to re-enter Japan without having to obtain a new visa, as long as their re-entry is within the valid period of the permit. For such foreigners, the procedures for entering Japan are much simpler than the usual landing procedures.
Applications for re-entry permits can be made at the nearest immigration authority under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Justice. When re-entry permission is granted, the permit is stamped on the foreigner's passport.
In principle, re-entry permission is valid for only one time. However, foreigners who have to leave Japan frequently can apply for multiple re-entry permits.
It is not possible to obtain re-entry permission at an embassy or consulate after departure from Japan. However, if a foreigner who has departed Japan after acquiring re-entry permission is unable to return to Japan before expiration of the permit for unavoidable reasons, such as illness, the foreigner can apply at an embassy or consulate for an extension of the re-entry permit's period of validity.

List of Countries That Have Visa Exemption Arrangements with Japan  

Term of residence / Country Term of residence / Country

3 months or less
14 days or less
Visa recommended
Temporarily suspended
Bangladesh        Pakistan

North America
3 months or less
90 days or less

Latin America and Caribbean
6 months or less
3 months or less
Argentina Bahamas
Chile Colombia
Costa Rica Dominican Rep.
El Salvador Guatemala
Honduras Suriname
90 days or less
Visa recommended

6 months or less
Austria Germany
Ireland Liechtenstein
Switzerland United Kingdom
3 months or less
Belgium Croatia
Cyprus Denmark
Finland France
Greece Iceland
Italy Luxembourg
Macedonia Malta
Netherlands Norway
Portugal San Marino
Slovenia Spain
90 days or less
Andorra Czech Rep.
Estonia Hungary
Latvia Lithuania
Monaco Poland

90 days or less
Australia* New Zealand

Middle East
3 months or less
Israel       Turkey
Temporarily suspended

3 months or less
Lesotho        Mauritius

Notes: In the case of visa exemption arrangements of up to three months or 90 days, foreigners are granted upon landing a temporary visitor status for a period of 90 days (15 days for Brunei).
Nationals of countries that have concluded visa exemption arrangements with Japan for stays of up to six months in principle are granted permission to stay in Japan for 90 days at the time of landing. Nationals of these countries who wish to stay in Japan for more than 90 days must apply at their nearest immigration authority in Japan for an extension of their period of stay.

*In the case of Australia, Japan adopts a unilateral measure, not a bilateral visa exemption arrangement.

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