Japan Visa Application Requirements for Filipino Tourists in Manila, Philippines (Single / Multiple Entry)

by Japan, Visa Guides & Immigration509 comments

Japan is, without a doubt, one of the foreign countries that I would LOVE to visit over and over again! However, as a third world passport holder from the Philippines, we are always required to avail of a Japan visa whenever we want to enter their country… and I’m not gonna lie: it can be quite a hassle!

As a Filipino, surely you might be thinking that it’s hard to get one… but I can tell you from experience that it’s actually NOT that difficult!

In fact: it was easy, and by the second time that I applied, I got myself a multiple entry tourist visa to Japan which now gives me the chance to visit for as much as I want without having to apply for a visa beforehand. (UPDATE: As of 2018, the Embassy is now issuing 10-year visas!)

RELATED READ:
Tokyo Itinerary or Top Things to do in Tokyo (Per District)
Japan Itinerary Ideas and Travel Guide
Best Japan Spots to Go to During Cherry Blossom Season

What to Do in Japan…?

Come and check out this list of the top things to do in Japan which features the best activities and tours to do in places like Tokyo, Kyoto, and more!

The application process for a Japan visaa was EASY and hopefully, with the help of this guide, you can get to visit Japan soon!

…But first, a disclaimer:

NO ONE can give you a guarantee of your Japan visa’s approval — not even a lawyer, a consultant, a travel agent, or an embassy employee. Anyone who says otherwise is most likely going to be a scammer.

That being said, what I can offer you here is a comprehensive guide with helpful tips to increase your chances of getting that Japan Visa.

Top photo by: Shutterstock

ApplicationProcess for Japan Visa

Step 1: Determine the type of Japan visa you need to apply for

There are, of course, various types of Japan Visas out there that you can apply for: a visa for medical stay, a visa for business, a visa for transit, a visa for being a spouse, etc.

For this particular guide, I will only be discussing the requirements for a tourist visa and visits to a friend or relative since they are experiences that I’ve gone through myself (both for single and multiple entry types as well as if you’re visiting with or without a guarantor/sponsor).

If, however, you have a different situation or purpose of visit, it’s best that you head over to this page of the Embassy of Japan in the Philippines for more information.

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Step 2: Prepare the required documents for your application

Depending on your circumstance, click the symbol ‘+‘ below to view the corresponding requirements for each section.

  • Make sure that you have authentic, original, and complete documents at all times.
  1. Philippine Passport. If your photo has broken lamination, it will NOT be accepted. Make sure as well that your passport is valid for 6 months prior to your intended travel date, it has your signature, and has at least two (2) blank pages.
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  2. A duly accomplished Japan Visa Application Form.
    • Print the Japan Visa Application Form in A4 size.
    • Download the application form from here (you can see a sample filled-out form of this here). It is possible to type your information on this form; otherwise, if you’re going to fill it out by hand, make sure there will be NO erasures. Best to write in print or in capitalized letters too.
    • Do completely fill the form properly and ensure that you have signed it with your signature. Put “N/A” in all spaces that are not applicable especially on the 2nd page.
    • To view a sample filled out Japan Visa Application Form, see here.
    • There are sections here that ask for your airline and hotel name…

This does NOT mean that you are required to book your airline and hotel beforehand because the embassy does NOT require applicants to book it before approval. That being said, just write here your intended airline to book with and the hotel that you plan to stay in should your Japan visa be approved. If you’re going to stay in multiple hotels, just pick one to write on the form.
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If in case you want some “peace of mind” and still want to book a hotel to show to the embassy, it’s best to do it with Booking.com or Agoda.com. With them, you can reserve a hotel with NO pre-payment and you can even cancel the booking a day before your arrival with NO cancellation charges at all.
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For flights, just watch out for promo fares on local airlines like Cebu Pacific and Air Asia. (Yet again, like I said, booking these won’t really affect your application). And in case you’re wondering where to look for the best flight deals, my go-to platform is Skyscanner.

  1. 4.5cm x 4.5 cm Photo (white background). This must be pasted on the Japan Visa Application form.
    • The photo must be taken in the past 6 months.
    • Photos that are pixelated or of low resolution will NOT be accepted.
    • Please also write your name and birthdate on the backside of the photo before pasting it.
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  2. NSO Birth Certificate. This must be an NSO Original that has been issued within one (1) year. It must be acquired from the PSA’s (Philippine Statistics Office’s) main office or from any Serbilis Outlet Centers nationwide. In case your birth certificate from PSA is unreadable or has incomplete information, please submit your birth certificate issued by PSA together with a birth certificate from the Local Civil Registrar. Otherwise…
    • If your birth certificate is “Late Registration”, submit your Baptismal Certificate (it must have complete address and telephone information of the church) and School Record [Form 137] from high school or elementary (it must have complete address and telephone information of the school).
    • If you have NO record in PSA, please submit a “Certificate of Non-Record” from PSA together with a birth certificate from the Local Civil Registrar.

A birth certificate is NOT required for submission IF you have already been issued a Japan Visa before (old or still valid). However, if you are going to take a guarantor/sponsor that is a member of your family, you will still need to submit it as proof of your relationship.

  1. NSO Marriage Certificate. Of course, this is only if you’re married. Make sure that it has been issued within one year from PSA Main Office/Serbilis Outlet Center (Nationwide). In case there is no record in PSA, please submit a “Certificate of Non-Record” from PSA together with the Marriage Certificate from the Local Civil Registrar.

This is NOT required for submission IF you have already been issued a Japan Visa before (old or still valid).

  1. Daily Schedule in Japan. Download the form here: [Japanese] or [English]. This is basically how you give the Embassy a rough idea of your travel itinerary. I assure you that it doesn’t need to be complicated nor thoroughly detailed. Check out the examples of daily schedule forms that I have filled out before below.
Sample Daily Schedule for Japan Visa Application
  1. Bank Certificate. This must be an original copy from your bank which must be issued within the past 3 months.
    • How much should you have in your bank account? The Japan Embassy did not mention any minimum balance requirement, but I have surely heard of someone (and some others) who was (were) granted a Japan visa even with only Php 50,000 in the bank (with a trip that spanned for 5 days) — so let’s use that as a minimum standard (but again it’s always best that you have more).
      • Meanwhile, do take note that your bank certificate will often show the monthly average balance of your savings account; therefore, depositing a sudden large amount of money in order to assist you in your visa application is NOT really a good idea.
    • ARE YOU GOING TO TAKE ON A GUARANTOR/SPONSOR FOR YOUR APPLICATION? Then submit his/her bank certificate instead.
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  2. Proof of Income. If you’re retired or a senior citizen, you can refrain from submitting an ITR for as long as you submit your Bank Certificate and explain why you can’t submit an ITR. Otherwise…
    • For employed persons.
      • Latest ITR (Form 2316) clear photocopy in A4 paper.
      • If you do NOT have an ITR, write a simple letter explaining why you’re unable to submit it (examples: you’re newly employed, etc.)
      • Certificate of Employment — this is actually NO longer required BUT, if you want to strengthen your application, it doesn’t hurt to provide it.
    • For self-employed / business persons.
      • If you’re a freelancer, provide your latest ITR (Form 1701A) clear photocopy in A4 paper.
      • If you own a business, submit the company ITR. Business Registration issued by DTI / SEC is not required BUT, if you want to strengthen your application, it doesn’t hurt to provide it.
      • If you do NOT have an ITR, write a simple letter explaining why you’re unable to submit it (examples: if you are a new business, a newly self-employed person, you are being taxed in another country, etc.)
        • !!! Start filing your local taxes as early as NOW — after all, a lot of embassies (not only Japan) require an ITR. So if you’re looking for a hassle-free experience on Philippines tax compliance, I suggest registering with Taxumo because they can take care of literally everything for you: tax forms, payments, and submissions.
          • I’ve been using them for years now and it has been such a time-saver. Come sign up with my code AILEEN and you can get a 10% discount on all their subscription plans!
    • For OFWs.
      • Provide tax exemption form from BIR.
      • Certificate of Employment (or contract of employment)
    • For unemployed persons.
      • Given the way the Embassy of Japan presents its requirements for visa application, it’s best that you acquire a guarantor/sponsor who can provide an ITR and help support your financial standing.
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  3. List of Visa Applicants. This is only if you are applying as a group or as a family. For this, you need a representative applicant and this can be one of your parents or your key sponsor. To accomplish this, just fill-up the form found here. Print in on an A4 paper as always.
    • There is a section in the form that asks for “Relationship with the inviting person and guarantor”, just write N/A here because you’re only applying as a tourist. This is only applicable if you’re visiting friends or relatives in Japan.

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This kind of application is applicable for students, minors, unemployed persons, spouses (if one of you can’t submit a bank certificate), and even self-employed persons/freelancers (who can’t provide an ITR and have no strong reason why they can’t submit it). This also applies to anyone who has a company/agency to sponsor their trip.

For submitting the necessary requirements, simply submit the requirements listed in section (A), numbers #1 to #6 and when it comes to (#7) Bank Certificate and (#8) Proof of Income, ask these from your guarantor/sponsor — it could be your mom, dad, brother, sister, friend, boyfriend, girlfriend, relative, company, etc. who is living in the Philippines.

Take note, however, that there are NO guarantees of approval if your guarantor is NOT a family member of yours. In fact, it is said that it’s a lot better to have a direct family member sponsoring you.

For other documents, you should also submit the following…

  1. Guarantee Letter. Download the template here: [Japanese] or [English]. This must be issued within the past 3 months.
    • Under “Seal”, this is supposedly for companies who will sponsor you. If it’s an individual who does not have a seal, he/she can just put his/her signature there.
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  2. Photocopy of Guarantor/Sponsor’s Passport. Provide a photocopy of the bio page only; if not, it can be a photocopy of any Visa page or any government-issued ID.
    • If your guarantor/sponsor is a foreigner or foreign national, please also provide a photocopy of his/her identity card (I-CARD) or AEP (Alien Employment Permit).
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  3. Proof of Relationship. If your sponsor is a member of your family, you can provide documents such as NSO birth or marriage certificate (as applicable), etc. If it’s a friend, it can be photos of the 2 of you together, screenshots of chat conversations, emails, etc.

ADDITIONAL NOTES:

  • If you’re a student or minor…
    • Submit your Certificate of Enrollment too.
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  • If your guarantor/sponsor is a foreigner or foreign national…
    • If he has NO account in any of the local banks in the Philippines, he/she can provide a photocopy of his/her bank statement with contact details.
    • Providing payslips will help.

* * * * * *

If your guarantor or sponsor is a Japanese person living in Japan, aside from the requirements listed in section (A), numbers #1 to #6, you should also submit the following:

  1. Guarantee Letter. Download the template here: [Japanese] or [English]. This must be issued within the past 3 months.
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  2. Residence Certificate. Called “Juminhyo”, this must be issued within the past 3 months.
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  3. Proof of Income. Submit any of the following…
    • Income Certificate (Shotoku Shomeisho) from City Hall
    • Tax Return Certificate (Nouzeishomeisho: Form2) with Gross Income from Tax Office
    • Kakuteishinkokusho Hikae or Bank Certificate (Yokin Zandaka Shomeisho)
    • The following are NOT accepted: Gensen ChoShusho, Nouzeishomeisho Form 1, and Soushotoku (without annual income)
    • The above items must be issued within 3 months. Submission of Withholding Slip (GENSEN-CHOSHU- HYO) in lieu of the above documents is unacceptable. But take note that guarantor’s Income Certificate etc. is important in measuring their capability to support you; therefore, submission of more than one document is allowed and encouraged.

NOTES:

In addition to numbers #7 to #9 above, if you’re invited and are intending to stay in your Japanese guarantor/sponsor’s residence in Japan who is a DIRECT (parent, sister/brothers, aunts/uncles, or niece/nephews) or DISTANT relative (cousins, etc.), you must submit:

  1. Invitation Letter. Download the template here: [Japanese] or [English]. This must be issued within the past 3 months, signed, and completed by your Japanese guarantor/sponsor.
  2. Family Registration. Called “Koseki Tohon”, this must be issued within the past 3 months

Alternatively, if you’re invited and are intending to stay in your Japanese guarantor/sponsor’s residence in Japan who is a FRIEND only (non-family), you must submit:

  1. Invitation Letter. Download the template here: [Japanese] or [English]. This must be issued within the past 3 months, signed, and completed by your Japanese guarantor/sponsor.
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  2. Proof of Relationship. This can be photos of the 2 of you together, screenshots of chat conversations, or emails.

* * * * * *

If your guarantor or sponsor is a non-Japanese person living in Japan, aside from the requirements listed in section (A), numbers #1 to #6, you should also submit the following:

  1. Guarantee Letter. Download the template here: [Japanese] or [English]. This must be issued within the past 3 months.
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  2. Foreign Registration Certificate. Alien Card acquired from the City Hall, this must be issued within the past 3 months.
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  3. Photocopy of Passport. All pages must be photocopied.
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  4. Photocopy of Residence Card. Both sides of the card. Or their Special Permanent Resident Certificate (both sides).
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  5. Proof of Income.
    • Income Certificate (Shotoku Shomeisho) from City Hall
    • Tax Return Certificate (Nouzeishomeisho: Form2) from Tax Office
    • Kakuteishinkokusho Hikae or Bank Certificate (Yokin Zandaka Shomeisho)
    • The following are NOT accepted: Gensen ChoShusho, Nouzeishomeisho Form 1, and Soushotoku (without annual income)

NOTES:

In addition to numbers #7 to #11 above, if you’re invited and are intending to stay in your non-Japanese guarantor/sponsor’s residence in Japan who is a DIRECT relative (parent, sister/brothers, aunts/uncles, or niece/nephews), you must also submit:

  1. Invitation Letter. Download the template here: [Japanese] or [English]. This must be issued within the past 3 months, signed, and completed by your non-Japanese guarantor/sponsor.
    .
  2. NSO Birth & Marriage Certificates. Depending on your relationship with the direct Filipino relative living in Japan, you must provide birth and/or marriage certificates for…
    • Parent – Child: You and your relative in Japan
    • Brother – Sister: You and your relative in Japan
    • Aunt/Uncle – Niece/Nephew: You, your relative in Japan, and parent of your relative in Japan
    • Niece/Nephew – Aunt/Uncle: You, your parent, and your relative in Japan

Alternatively, if you’re invited and are intending to stay in your non-Japanese guarantor/sponsor’s residence in Japan who is a FRIEND only (non-family), you must submit:

  1. Invitation Letter. Download the template here: [Japanese] or [English]. This must be issued within the past 3 months, signed, and completed by your non-Japanese guarantor/sponsor.
    .
  2. Proof of Relationship. This can be photos of the 2 of you together, screenshots of chat conversations, or emails.

* * * * * *

The Embassy of Japan has updated its requirements for this type of tourist visa since 2018. First of all, they have the following conditions for granting a multiple-entry visa and it is only applicable to the following individuals who have ANY of these characteristics…

  • An applicant with a history of travel as a temporary visitor to Japan in the last three (3) years and has no known violation of Japan domestic laws nor had a problem with immigration regarding entry and status during the period of stay — and he/she must also have sufficient financial capacity to support expenses for travel and stay.
  • An applicant with a history of travel as a temporary visitor to Japan in the last three (3) years and has no known violation of Japan domestic laws nor had problem with immigration regarding entry and status during the period of stay — and he/she has several histories of travel as temporary visitor to G7 countries (excluding Japan) in the last (3) years. These other G7 countries are Canada, France, Germany, Italy, United Kingdom (UK), and United States (USA).
  • The applicant has abundant financial capacity.
  • The applicant is a spouse or child of someone who has abundant financial capacity.

As for the requirements…

  1. Explanation Letter. Download this request form and fill it out.
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  2. Philippine Passport. This should be an ICAO standard MRP or IC ordinary passport. If your photo has broken lamination, it will NOT be accepted. Make sure as well that your passport is valid for 6 months prior to your intended travel date, it has your signature, and has at least two (2) blank pages.
    .
  3. A duly accomplished Japan Visa Application Form.
    • Print the Japan Visa Application Form in A4 size.
    • Download the application form from here (you can see a sample filled-out form of this here). It is possible to type your information on this form; otherwise, if you’re going to fill it out by hand, make sure that there will be NO erasures. Best to write in print or in capitalized letters too.
    • Completely fill the form properly and ensure that you have signed it with your signature. Put “N/A” in all spaces that are not applicable especially on the 2nd page.
      .
  4. 4.5cm x 4.5 cm Photo (white background). This must be pasted on the Japan Visa Application Form.
    • The photograph must be taken in the past 6 months.
    • Photos that are pixelated or of low resolution will NOT be accepted.
    • Please also write your name and birthdate on the backside of the photo.
      .
  5. Daily Schedule in Japan. Download the form here: [Japanese] or [English]. This is basically where you give them a rough idea of your travel itinerary. I assure you that it doesn’t need to be complicated nor thoroughly detailed. Check out the examples of daily schedule forms that I have filled out before below.
Sample Daily Schedule for Japan Visa Application

Additionally, the following are some other special requirements. If under the conditions, you…

  • Have travel history to Japan as a temporary visitor and have sufficient financial capacity, you must also submit:
    • Proof of travel to Japan in the last three (3) years (old or recent passport with used temporary visitor visa and landing permission stamps)
    • Latest Income Tax Return (clear photocopy)
    • Proof of financial capacity (applicant’s bank certificate, or dividend certificate of stocks, etc. as proof of sufficient economic status)
      .
  • Have travel history to Japan as a temporary visitor and have traveled several times as a visitor to G7 countries excluding Japan, you must also submit:
    • Proof of travel to Japan in the last three (3) years (old or recent passport with used temporary visitor visa and landing permission stamps)
    • Proof of travel as temporary visitor to G7 countries excluding Japan in the last (3) years (old or recent passport with entry visas and immigration stamps)
      .
  • Have abundant financial capacity, you must also submit:
    • Birth certificate issued by PSA within 1 year
    • Marriage Certificate issued by PSA within 1 year
    • Latest Income Tax Return (clear photocopy)
    • Proof of financial capacity (applicant’s bank certificate, or dividend certificate of stocks, etc. as proof of sufficient economic status)
      .
  • Are a spouse or child of someone who has an abundant financial capacity, you must also submit:
    • Latest Income Tax Return of your guarantor/sponsor (clear photocopy)
    • Guarantor/sponsor’s proof of financial capacity (applicant’s bank certificate, or dividend certificate of stocks, etc. as proof of sufficient economic status)
    • Birth certificate issued by PSA within 1 year and/or Marriage Certificate issued by PSA within 1 year

**Feel free to provide additional documents to support your eligibility depending on your kind of work. .

NOTE: It seems to be customary that if you’ve already visited Japan before, you’ll be automatically granted a multiple entry visa by your 2nd application (even if you didn’t specifically request for it — but it could be a case by case basis).
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But feel free to also apply for a multiple entry tourist visa even if it’s your 1st application since there are those who have already been successful in doing so. As always though, just ensure that you have complete documents with you for submission and are properly eligible for this as per the conditions above.

NOTE: If in case you are a Philippine national living or residing in a foreign country and you wish to avail of a Japan tourist visa, kindly inquire with the appropriate Japan Embassy in the country that you’re living in.

On my first visit to Japan, I applied for my tourist visa at the Embassy of Japan in Brussels, Belgium, and the application was fairly easy — the requirements were almost the same as the above (maybe even less).

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Step 3: Choose an accredited travel agency to process your application

The Embassy of Japan in the Philippines does NOT accept direct applications (unless you have a very special or dire case).

So what you need to do instead is go to an accredited travel agency — submit your documents to them and they will process your application for you!

A Japan Visa is FREE, however, these travel agencies charge for the service that they offer of processing/sending your application, and their corresponding single-entry Japan tourist visa without guarantor fee are as follows (for fees on other types of tourist visas, kindly inquire with them or check their website).

Which is the best travel agency to go to if I want to increase my chances of approval?

There really is NO best travel agency out there when it comes to visa approval because they have NO control whatsoever over that matter. Again, these accredited travel agencies simply ensure that the documents you are going to give are complete — after which, they just pass it to the embassy who makes the analysis and final decision.

If however, it’s about the best in price, or the one closest to where you live, then yes, it will be easy to see who’s “best”.

Personally, I applied to Universal Holidays because they were closest to my address at that time. They’re located in Dusit Thani Hotel in Makati alongside Reli Tours and Friendship Tours, but I ended up picking Universal Holidays because they didn’t have a long line. Once I was in, the overall process of submission was streamlined and easy!

NOTE: Only pass your documents to the accredited agencies above! If you’re located far away, it’s also possible to send your documents by courier or through a representative. Just inquire with the travel agency that you’re interested in to see if such is possible.

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Step 4: Wait for the results of your Japan visa application

After you submit your documents to an accredited travel agency, you’ll just have to wait for their email/call/text message that notifies you about when you can pick up your passport, or when you still need to give them additional requirements. (Again, be aware that submission does NOT guarantee the issuance of a visa.)

Visa processing normally takes 2-5 business days — I got mine in just 2 days with Universal Holidays.

Also, I was told that if there’s a red sticker at the back of your passport upon pick-up, it means that your application has been denied. (Mine had a white sticker, which was approved).

Looking for Japan Itinerary Ideas?

Come and check out my ‘DIY Japan Itinerary Guide’ post which features detailed day-by-day activities that you could do, no matter the length of your stay!

• • •

» Top Japan Activities «

Kimono Rental

Kimono Rental
Try out Japan’s traditional kimono for a day!

Robot Restaurant Show

Robot Restaurant Show
See this famous show in Tokyo!

• • •

Booking Essentials

Book an AirBnB
Booking.com

TIP: It’s a good idea to crosscheck your World Nomads‘ total travel insurance price with that of SafetyWing because the latter is often priced cheaper (especially when it involves travel that spans for several weeks or months — and even years!).
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However, take note that SafetyWing’s affordability typically means lesser coverage than World Nomads. So please always ensure that you read the fine print in order to decipher which travel insurance company is the right fit for you and your trip!

Looking for more travel tips for Japan?

Check out my other detailed Japan travel guides!

• • •

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

Multiple Entry Japan Visa
How long can I stay in Japan with a Japan Tourist Visa?

As a temporary visitor, the Embassy of Japan only grants 15 or 30 days of stay. (If you’re visiting a relative, they can allow up to 90 days).

How long is the visa for Japan valid for?

Single-entry: 90 days upon issue BUT once you enter Japan, you will only be allowed to stay for 15 days only (unless otherwise stated on your visa).
Multiple-entry: 3 to 5 years (sometimes 10) BUT once you enter Japan, you will only be allowed to stay for 15 or 30 days, as dependent on the info stated on your visa.

If I have a multiple entry tourist visa, how long until I can re-enter Japan again after a trip?

There seems to be NO existing rule for a “break period” when you want to enter Japan again — however, take note that if you enter the country again too soon, that will raise questions and the immigration might not let you in. Also, take note that you should NOT spend more than 180 days total in a year in Japan as a tourist.

When is the earliest time that I can apply for a Japan Visa?

You can apply no earlier than 60 days (2 months) before the date of your intended departure.

When is the latest time that I can apply for a Japan Visa?

To be safe, apply at least 15 working days before the date of your intended departure.

I was granted a Japan Visa before, what process do I have to follow to renew my Japan Visa?

The same process mentioned above. The only documents you don’t need to resubmit are your birth and marriage certificates (unless you are going to apply with a guarantor/sponsor who is a family member, then you will still need to submit a birth/marriage certificate as proof of relationship).

How long does it take for a Japan Visa to be released?

Like I’ve mentioned above, it can take 2-5 working days. I got mine in just 2 days.

Will there be a formal interview for my visa application?

Nope. The travel agencies are only there to collect and check your documents. However, it is possible that the Embassy of Japan will request that you visit them for an interview after they receive your documents — but I’ve never heard of such a case when applying for a tourist visa only.

Do I need to book accommodation and plane tickets by the time I send in my application?

The embassy does NOT require applicants to book nor submit roundtrip flight tickets and hotel(s) before applying for a visa. I never booked mine. But if in case you want some “peace of mind” and still want to book a hotel to show to the embassy, it’s best to do it with Booking.com or Agoda.com. With them, you can reserve a hotel with NO pre-payment and you can even cancel the booking a day before your arrival with NO cancellation charges at all. For flights, you should use Skyscanner to find the best deals. (Yet again, like I said, booking these won’t really affect your application).

Can I submit other documents not listed above?

If it can support your application even further, then sure! The Embassy encourages that, especially if it can help provide proof of your economical or social ties within the Philippines (example: pay slips, real estate properties, land title, etc.).

Do I need to provide a cover letter?

It’s not required, but it’s good practice to provide one. After all, if you can’t provide an ITR or if you’re planning to apply for a multiple entry visa, it’s important to write a letter to explain your situation.

Do you have an example cover letter?

Yes, I have. Check it out here.

What do I say if I don’t have an ITR with BIR?

Just be honest and explain why. Just make sure you have a strong or reasonable explanation as to why (example: you’re new to your job, you are just newly registered to BIR, etc.). But if you’re nervous about not being able to submit an ITR or if you’re unsure if your reason is enough, you can then choose to take on a guarantor/sponsor for your Japan Visa application.
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However, if you’re a self-employed individual or freelancer who works in the Philippines, it is your obligation to register yourself with BIR to get ITR forms later on. For this, I suggest registering with Taxumo because they can take care of literally everything for you: tax forms, payments, and submissions. I’ve been using them for years now and it has been such a time-saver. Come sign up with my code AILEEN and you can get a 10% discount on all their service plans!

How much money should I have in the bank?

The Japan Embassy did NOT mention any minimum balance requirement, but I have surely heard of someone (and some others) who was (were) granted a visa even with only Php 50,000 in the bank (with a trip that spanned for 5 days) — so let’s use that as a standard. Meanwhile, do take note that your bank certificate will often show the monthly average balance of your savings account; therefore, depositing a sudden large amount of money in order to assist you in your visa application is NOT really a good idea.

What if there’s a problem with the spelling of my name/birthday on my Birth Certificate and Passport?

Kindly provide an Affidavit of Discrepancy.

I will be traveling with my family/friends, are we all required to be there at the travel agency when submitting our documents?

It’s not really required. Besides, some travel agencies provide the option of submitting your documents and/or receiving your passports (after application) via courier. Whereas there are travel agencies that may want you all to be there upon submission, and if in case one of you can’t personally come, just provide an Authorization Letter and photocopy of that person’s valid ID.

Can one person among my family/friends be our overall guarantor/sponsor? We are all traveling to Japan together, and applying for a Japan Visa together.

Sure, but take note: this would mean that he/she should have enough financial capacity and income to prove that he/she can shoulder each and everyone of you.

How can I follow up on my application?

If you haven’t heard back from the travel agency in 5 days, feel free to call them to follow up.

My Japan Visa application was denied. Is there anything I can do?

When a visa is not granted, the reasons for the denial will never be disclosed (yes, even the travel agency would NOT know why). Regrettably, I can’t find any information about making an appeal to the Embassy of Japan. You can, however, apply again after six (6) months with the same purpose of tourist visit — unless there are emergency / humanitarian reasons, or if you want to apply for a different purpose (work, study, etc.).

NOTE: If you’re not a Filipino citizen, you can check this Japan online visa application website for tips!

– – –

As you can see, applying for a Japan Tourist Visa is relatively easy — and I hope the process of preparation becomes absolutely hassle-free with this visa guide.

Let me know how it goes… good luck!

• • •

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Solo Female Travel Blogger: Aileen Adalid

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509 Comments

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  1. Chloe

    One thing I never realised before I went overseas that I had to apply for VISAS! This is a great break down for those wanting to go to Japan

    Reply
    • Aileen

      It’s one of the ‘hassles’ of travel, somehow haha!

      Reply
  2. Sue

    Applying for visas is such an exhausting process but your guide is a great step by step guide that makes it very clear. I’m thankful that when I visited Japan in 2012 my husbands company took care of our paperwork as he was attending a meeting and I was just tagging along to see the sights. I didn’t realize that the tourist visa only lasted for 15-30 days, that seems such a short period of time. Sadly I only got to stay 2 days in Tokyo before flying on but I sure hope I get a chance to return as I loved my short buy very sweet stay.

    Reply
    • Aileen

      Yeah, the days offered are really small, but if you visit a relative they can give 90 days tourist visa. I hope you can visit Tokyo for more days again in the future!

      Reply
  3. Jennifer

    I have never been out of the country other than Jamaica. My husband travels frequently for work, and has been overseas several times . Thanks for the solid information in case I ever get the chance to travel to Japan!

    Reply
    • Aileen

      Hope you get to visit soon, Jennifer!

      Reply
  4. Heather

    I used to work for a Japanese company so I would have to go there for business. WOW you go through a lot to get entry into Japan, we have it pretty easy here. It’s just a matter of having a passport. Of course, many US Americans don’t have them, though. Congratulations on getting a 5-year multiple entry! That’s awesome. Enjoy your trips. :)

    Reply
    • Aileen

      Haha, yeah… us 3rd world passport holders have to almost apply for visas all the time. But it doesn’t stop us from travelling :D Thanks Heather!

      Reply
  5. MONICA Y

    Super helpful information. We are thinking on going this year and you gave me all the information I was looking for. This is going to make our travel arrangements so easy. Thanks so much for sharing.

    Reply
    • Aileen

      I’m so happy to hear that! Good luck and enjoy Japan :D

      Reply
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