Japan is a major tourist destination admired for its culture. If you plan to visit the country, it is important that you know what documentation and papers you need. In this article, we inform you about everything you need to travel to this territory on your own.

Below you have an index with all the points that we are going to deal with in this article.

Necessary documents

Depending on your nationality and the purpose of your trip, you may need to apply for a visa to enter Japan:

Passport Number

As long as no paid activity is carried out, there are countries that have a mutual visa waiver agreement. Therefore, its citizens only need a passport to travel to Japan, that is, they can enter without visa.

First of all, there are some territories that can benefit from this benefit for a total of six months:

  • Austria
  • Germany
  • Ireland
  • Liechtenstein
  • Mexico
  • United Kingdom
  • Switzerland

The rest of the states that have this agreement have permission to stay in Japan for three months. They are as follows:

  • A: Andorra, Argentina, Australia
  • B: Bahamas, Barbados, Belgium, Bulgaria
  • C: Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus
  • D: Denmark
  • E: El Salvador, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, United States, Estonia
  • F: Finland, France
  • G: Greece, Guatemala
  • H: Honduras, Hong Kong, Hungary
  • I: Iceland, Israel, Italy
  • L: Lesotho, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg
  • M: Macao, Macedonia, Malaysia, Malta, Mauritius, Monaco
  • N: Norway, New Zealand
  • P: Netherlands, Poland, Portugal
  • R: Czech Republic, Dominican Republic, Romania
  • S: San Marino, Serbia, Singapore, Suriname, Sweden
  • T: Taiwan, Tunisia, Turkey
  • U: Uruguay

On the other hand, people from Brunei and Thailand will be able to stay in the country without applying for a visa for up to 15 days.

It is advisable to carry your accommodation reservation and other important documents by hand, as the authorities can request them.

People whose passport was issued in a British or Portuguese colony are not taken into account. As for Malaysian citizens, they must have a biometric passport or with the symbol of ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organization).

Also, Indonesian people must register such a passport with the Japanese embassy or consulate before departure. For Taiwan, a passport with a personal identification number is required.

Finally, citizens of Barbados, Turkey and Lesotho must have a Machine Readable Passport (MRP) or a biometric one accepted by ICAO.


People from the rest of the territories that we have not named previously, such as Colombia, Peru or Venezuela, must apply for a temporary stay visa to travel to Japan as tourists. This will be valid for 90 days. This is the documentation that must be presented:

  • Passport with a free sheet
  • 4,5 × 4,5 cm photograph
  • Application form filled out and signed
  • Work or study certificate
  • Proof of financial means (annual income and bank book with the latest payrolls)
  • Detailed travel plan
  • Hotel and plane reservation
Babies and children have to meet the same requirements as adults.

Likewise, if you are going to visit and stay with a friend or relative, it is also necessary to present these documents:

  • Document showing the existing relationship.
  • Original invitation letter.
  • Original guarantee letter.
  • JUMINHYO Original (domiciliary certificate). If you are a resident alien, TOROKUGEN PYO KISAI JIKO SHOMEISHO (Certificate of Residence as a Foreigner), and a photocopy of the passport with the visa.
  • If you are going to take care of your expenses, a document that proves financial solvency, such as the recent bank balance.

If you are interested in going to live or work in Japan, you will need to apply for a work visa. In the event that you are going to study with some type of scholarship, you will need a visa for cultural activities. There is also a specific visa for descendants of Japanese.

Additional security

Since November 20, 2007, for the prevention of terrorism, there is a protocol that must be followed when arriving in the country. First, the passport is presented and the index finger of each hand has to be passed through a digital reader.

Afterwards, a photo of the traveler's face is taken and a interview short. This does not apply to children under the age of 16, as well as to permanent residents, persons with activities related to diplomatic status and those invited by the heads of the national administration.

When you go through customs at the airport, if you only carry hand luggage and you do not exceed the limit for having to pay taxes, you only have to make an oral declaration. If you are carrying checked baggage, you must submit a written statement.

Travel with pet

If you plan to travel to Japan with your pet, it is important that you inform yourself in advance of the process that must be passed. In the case of dogs and cats, they must be microchipped and vaccinated against rabies.

In addition, they must perform serological tests and formalize certificates. Likewise, an official form must be sent to notify the Animal Quarantine Service at least 40 days before the trip.

If the animal meets all the requirements upon arrival, it will pass the quarantine period in 12 hours or less. If, on the contrary, he does not comply, he must go through a detention center of the Animal Quarantine Service, where he may remain up to 180 days.

Recommendations for Spaniards

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation of Spain advises that people who are going to visit Japan register in the Registry of Travelers. You can find it by clicking this link.

Japan is a safe country when it comes to crime, so thefts are quite infrequent. The currency used is japanese yen, of which you can find more information in this article: Value, curiosities and history of the currency of Japan.

On the other hand, earthquakes are frequent. The area most closely monitored for earthquake danger today is Kumamoto, in Kyūshū, where caution must be exercised.

As for volcanoes, you should not travel to areas near the Sakurajima volcano, in Kyūshū, or the Kuchinoerabujima, in the Ryūkyū islands.

Sanitary requirements

Another of the tips What this organism gives is that a medical insurance with wide coverage is contracted and that it does not oblige us to pay the expenses in advance, since the country's health is expensive for foreigners. The healthcare system is of high quality, but most doctors they do not speak English.

There are no mandatory vaccinations to enter the country. Therefore, it is recommended to keep the basic vaccination up to date for any destination:

  • Tetanus-diphtheria
  • MMR (measles, rubella and mumps)
  • Hepatitis A

Questions from users

Is it expensive to travel to Japan?

The price of services and products in Japan is comparable to that of a European city, so it is not excessively expensive. The part of the trip that you will have to spend the most budget on is the flight.

What is the best time to visit Japan?

There is no highly recommended date, since in most of the country, the climate is quite stable throughout the year. However, one of the most popular times for visitors is spring, when the Japanese cherry trees are in bloom.

Can you travel to Japan without knowing Japanese? And English?

It is not essential, but it is advisable to learn or write down some basic words in Japanese, such as numbers. As for English, it can make travel easier, but a large part of the Japanese cannot speak it. However, they are people with a great predisposition to help, so, even if you do not speak the same language, they will do everything possible to understand you.

Is there a radiation risk if you travel to Japan?

Today, radioactivity is not dangerous in most of the territory, with the exception of specific areas such as the area near the Fukushima nuclear power plant, which suffered extensive damage after the 2011 tsunami.

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