After my Hong Kong trip last October 2014, I found a cheap flight to Japan and booked a flight right away. I wasn’t even sure if I could get a visa but I was really hopeful. This was part of my Plan B if Plan A was a failure. No, I don’t want to tell what Plan A was.
I booked a flight for May 2015 trip in Tokyo, Japan and told myself I still have the chance to save money. I did some research on where to go and what requirements do I need to prepare.
March 2015 came and I was really nervous. A lot of people telling me that the Embassy of Japan is not really that strict anymore as they are inviting a lot of tourists for the upcoming Olympics in 2020. I still need to gather documents just to get the visa.
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Requirements for Japan Tourist Visa
I applied for a Tourist Visa and these are the documents that I submitted:
- Philippine passport
- Visa application form
- Photo 4.5×4.5 cm or 2×2 inch with white background
- Original NSO Birth Certificate
- Original Local Birth Certificate
- Daily Schedule in Japan
- Original bank certificate(s)
- Credit card bank statement
- Confirmed plane ticket
- Certifications of being involved in Non-Profit Organizations
- Letter of Explanation
I don’t have any Income Tax Return to show but I submitted certifications of being involved in non-profit organizations and a letter of explanation. The letter of explanation, I explained my interests of going to Japan of being so fond with anime, fashion and its culture. I also explained why I don’t have ITR to show and I told them how active I am as a volunteer, which is traveling with a purpose.
Related Article: How I Wrote my Letter of Explanation for Japan Tourist Visa
I went to Friendship Tours here in Cebu and the handling fee is P1,200. It will take 5-7 business days for the visa. The next week after my application, I got a SMS notification from the accredited agency that my passport was ready for pick-up. This will be my first solo backpacking in a visa-required country.
Requirements for Japan Tourist Visa: http://www.ph.emb-japan.go.jp/visiting/new%20visa/tourism.htm
Friendship Manila (accredited agency): http://www.visa.friendshipmanila.com/
I also wrote for Two Monkeys Travel Blog about my experience in Tokyo, Japan
List of Accredited Agencies
- UHI – Universal Holidays Inc.
- Discovery Tour Inc.
- Rajah Travel Corporation
- Reli Tours & Travel Agency
- Attic Tours Phils., Inc.
- Friendship Tours and Resorts Corporation
- Pan Pacific Travel Corporation
Frequent Asked Questions
How many days the visa gets approved?
It’s usually 5-7 business days. A reader named JB applied for a tourist visa at Reli Tours on January 12, 2016 and got a text from the travel agency on January 15 that his passport was available for pick-up.
What are the rules when it comes to bank certificate?
Bank certificates usually show the total balance + average daily balance of your account for the past 6 months. If you want your bank history to look credible, I suggest to establish first your account and maintain a sufficient amount for a long time. – mrsbisinyo
How much money should I have inside my bank?
During my first application I showed PhP 90,000 (savings account and time deposits). During my second application I showed PhP 60,000 (savings account and certificate of stock investment). At least you have to show PhP 50,000 in your bank account and it depends of the activities you can do in Japan.
What are the Guidelines of Writing a Letter of Explanation?
I created a separate blog post on How I Wrote my Letter of Explanation for Japan Tourist Visa.
What if a friend, a family or a boyfriend will shoulder my expenses in Japan?
The Embassy of Japan in the Philippines provided a link for the – Visa Section Information so please check the link.
I am a student, what requirements should I submit?
If you are a student and your parents will shoulder your trip, you need to show bank certificates, Income of Tax Return of your parents and letter of explanation about your purpose of the trip, a copy of study load and school ID as a proof that you are a student.
How to Prepare for your First Solo Trip in Japan?
I created a separate blog about this and you can read this at – Preparation for your First Solo Trip in Japan.
What is your budget for Japan trip?
As a budget traveler, my cash on hand was US$500 or PhP20,000. Find out more how I did it at – Budget Travel: 14 Days Japan with US$500 Cash on Hand.
How to Request Stock Certificate from COL Financial Philippines for Visa Application?
Please check out my blog about – How to Request Stock Certificate from COL Financial Philippines for Visa Application?