I was told that having a Japan Visa is harder than that of the US. I really can say that it is true because getting a Japan Visa is easier for me coz I don’t need to be interviewed by the consul just to be granted a visa.
Recently, I applied for a Japan Visa for a planned upcoming family trip to Japan. Here’s how I was able to get my visa in less than 3 days. Technically, you’ll be granted a visa the next day after you submit ALL the requirements needed.
Here’s what to do:
1. Look for an accredited Travel Agency that can process your papers.
I remember the first time I went to Japan last 2007, I was the one who went to the Embassy and submitted my documents prepared by the HR in the Office. There are no fees getting a Japan Visa. However, almost 3 or 4 years ago they already require you to pass thru an accredited Travel Agency first. I’m not sure what’s the reason behind that change but nevertheless, a certain cost is paid as a “processing fee” of the chosen agency.
We personally choose ReliTours because of its price and location.
2. Download an application form.
3. Be ready for a 2×2 picture as my passport picture was rejected by the agency. Hahaha!
4. Make an Itinerary of your planned activities during your stay in Japan.
5. Latest Birth Certificate for first time Japan Visa applicants.
Some points to consider:
- The birth certificate from NSO should be valid and not expired. Meaning, it was requested on the same year you’re applying for a visa.
- Please make sure that your birth certificate is readable. Ask your friend if he/she can read your personal details printed on your NSO birth certificate. We had a problem with that since my bf’s dad’s birth certificate is not really readable. If that’s the case, you have to provide additional documents either of the following:
- Local Registry Record where you can get at the place of birth’s Municipal Hall.
- Form 137 or Higschool Transcript of grades (I really don’t know what is this for! Hahaha!)
- Baptismal Certificate
- Confirmation Certificate
6. For Couples, Marriage Certificate is also required. Please take note of the points in Item 5. as it is also applicable to this item.
7. Bank Certificates and ITR
This is very important especially if you’re employed. I’ve had problems with my ITR before since I’ve switched employers for a couple of years. Best bet is to submit the latest ITR you have on hand. It is also safe if you submit the ITR 2 years before the current date especially if you’re applying during January or February. The official ITRs are not yet routed to employeed by that time so it’s a safe excuse for everyone.
If in case you can’t produce latest ITRs, you still have to submit the latest ITR you have on hand. Say for example you only have 2008 since you’ve been unemployed or in freelance for the next years, you just have to submit a letter addressed to the Embassy stating your situation. A copy of your current COE can be a supporting document for claim.
If you have your own business, a copy of ITRs and business permits are also required to be submitted to the Embassy.
8. Letter of Financial Support if ever your bringing with you an unemployed friend or relative.
Incase you’re bringing a friend who is unemployed, you can just simply provide a letter of financial support plus the ITR and Bank Certificate of the person who will shoulder his/her expenses. This is not a problem especially if you’re going on a group tour or family trip.
This should be valid 6 months from the time of the intended travel.
I guess that’s it. Just keep in mind that all the documents that you’ll submit will not be returned to you. Did I forget anything? Hhhhmmm, just inform me if I miss something.
By the way, once you get a Japan visa, you’ll be able to easily re-apply again the next time. Getting your first Japan Visa might be a struggle but the succeeding application would most likely be fine.
Goodluck and I hope you’ll also be able to get your Japan Visa!