Student Visa

More than 100,000 international students are currently studying at universities, junior colleges, professional schools and other educational institutions in Japan. Their number has been increasing rapidly since the 1980s, with two thirds of the students coming from China.

Visa Matters

Tourist Visa

Short time studies at Japanese Language Schools are permitted on a tourist visa

If you are a citizen of one of the over 50 countries, with which Japan has concluded a "general visa exemption arrangement", you need only a valid passport in order to enter Japan as a "temporary visitor", otherwise, you need to apply for a visa before coming to Japan. Temporary visitors from most countries are allowed to stay in Japan for up to 90 days.

If you are a citizens of Austria, Germany, Ireland, Liechtenstein, Mexico, Switzerland or the United Kingdom, you have the possibility to extend your stay in Japan to a total of up to six months. You still initially enter Japan for 90 days, but can then apply for an extension at an immigration office in Japan.

Temporary visitors are not allowed to engage in any paid activities. Short term studies at Japanese language schools are permitted.

Travelers, who change airplanes or ships in Japan, may be eligible for a transit visa, which allows them to enter Japan for up to 15 days for sightseeing purposes, before proceeding to their final destination outside of Japan.

All foreign tourists in Japan are required to carry their passports with them at all times.

Student Visa

All other foreign student in Japan need a student visa in order to study in Japan. Visa applicants

require an educational institution as their sponsor in order to obtain a student visa.

Student visa holders are not allowed to engage in any paid activities, unless they get the permission of the school and the immigration office. Even then, students may work only a set maximum number of hours per week. Working on a tourist visa is prohibited.

For further information:

A Guide to Japanese Visas ( The Ministry of Foreign Affairs )