Entry and Departure Regulations (visa exempt countries)

Visas and Passports

All foreign travelers of any nationality wishing to enter Japan must hold a proper passport valid for the period of stay in Japan.

Citizens of many countries may now enter Japan without a visa, provided the purpose of the visit is not for residence, employment, or engaging in other paid activities. However, for citizens from countries that have not concluded general reciprocal visa exemption arrangements with Japan, a visa must be obtained. Temporary short-term visas are normally issued as “permission to stay in Japan up to 90 days for non-profit-making activities.” These non-profit-making activities include sightseeing, participation in amateur sporting events, visits to family members, inspection or observation tours, participation in lectures or survey missions, attendance at conferences, engaging in business talks, and other similar activities.


Short-term visas cannot be used to stay in Japan for the purpose of gaining remuneration. In other words, visitors cannot earn profits or work and receive payment in Japan.

Visa Applications

A person wishing to obtain a visa must apply in person at the Japanese embassy or consulate in the applicant’s home country. The following documents must be submitted at the time of application:

(1) a valid passport
(2) two passport-type photos taken within the previous six months
(3) two official visa application forms, available at the embassy or consulate.
(4) documents certifying the purpose of the visit.

As the documents to be submitted for application vary according to the purpose of the visit, applicants are advised to make inquiries with the ministry or consulate before applying.
* Visa fee exemptions: Fees for visas are exempted for citizens from around 60 countries.

Visa Exempt Countries

List of Countries That Have Visa Exemption Arrangements with Japan

6 months or less

Austria, Germany, Ireland, Liechtenstein, Mexico, Switzerland, Britain

3 months or less

Argentina, Bahamas, Belgium, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Finland, France, Greece, Guatemala, Honduras, Iceland, Israel, Italy, Lesotho, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Malta, Mauritius, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal (except for passport holders of former or present Portuguese territories), San Marino, Singapore, Slovenia, Spain, Suriname, Sweden, Tunisia, Turkey, Uruguay

90 days or less

Andorra, Australia, Barbados, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Monaco, New Zealand, Poland, U.S.A.

14 days or less


List of Embassies and Consulates in Japan