Obtaining a Japanese Visa…

So Monday I sent out my paperwork so I could get my visa. It didn’t involve a lot of paperwork but at the same time with it being so close to the deadline I couldn’t help  but be worried that something would go horribly wrong. I called the Consulate General of Japan so many times I’m sure they recognize my voice now.

All I needed to send in was my Certificate of Eligibility with a photocopy of it, the application (signed) for the visa along with a passport-size picture, my passport and a self-addressed return envelope (I chose overnight). With that information they will create what I believe to be some sort of sticker which they will stick to one of the “Visa” pages in my passport.

Anyways, the way to get a Certificate of Eligibility is, I believe, through a university as a student or through other means for work. The employer/school needs to apply for the Certificate of Eligibility and then once they receive it they must send it to you. It feels like a pain in the butt because it’s so time consuming!

Other than that, you don’t have to pay the consulate any sort of fee for them to get your visa–which is super nice.

At any rate, this is how it works when you are an American citizen living in America.


Things I needed to send to the consulate office for my area:

  1. Certificate of Eligibility
  2. Photocopy of the Certificate of Eligibility
  3. Visa application (which had to be filled out and signed at the bottom)
  4. A passport-size photo which you would paper-clip to the visa application. It had to be recent (within the past 6 months).
  5. Your passport which must have at least one blank visa page.
  6. If you were not going to physically pick up your passport from the consulate office, you were to include within your package a prepaid envelope (they stated they preferred Fed-ex, so I used Fed-ex). Be sure to put your address in both the recipient and sender spaces provided on the return envelope you include. If you do not, and you place the consulate office as the sender, Fed-ex will bill them and they may not send your things back to you with that envelope.

If anyone has any questions, go ahead and leave me a comment. Don’t be shy, now! I can see what posts get views!