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Visitors Information

General Visa Information

This document provides Visa Information on the procedures that need to be followed to obtain a visa for foreigners visiting Japan, and in particular, for visitors to IPM who wish to enter Japan for the purposes of research, study and any other activities (See Table 1). In all cases, visitors are required to obtain an appropriate Visa at a Japanese Embassy or Consulate, except in the case of Visa Exemption for short-term stays (see Table 2). In addition, if a letter of invitation, letter of guarantee or any other documents are needed, please contact your host faculty to make your request.

Types and Categories of VISA

Short-term Stays (Excluding Work)

Temporary Visitors Visa (status 1) for such purposes such as conducting collaborative research, business trips (excluding Work), visiting relatives and friends, and sightseeing. This Visa is for temporary visits of up to 90 days. Nationals of 67 countriesexternarl link that have a visa exemption agreement with Japan (as of Dec 2014) * have no need to apply for this type of visa.

Long-term Stays

General Visa (status 2, 3, 4) cover activities such as cultural activities, research visits of more than 3-months duration, and academic study as undergraduate and graduate students at universities. Also included under this category are the activities of dependants (a spouse and/or unmarried minor child) of those who stay in Japan under this category.

Working Visa (status 5) Activities for research, research guidance, or education as professor, assistant professor, or assistant, postdoctoral fellow, etc., at universities or equivalent educational institutions where the applicant draws a salary from the Japanese host institution.

When applying for the above-mentioned activities (status 2, 3, 4, 5), it is advisable to apply in Japan beforehand for a Certificate of Eligibility. This Certificate of Eligibility is issued by a regional immigration authority under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Justice, and is generally made by a Proxy, Host institution or Guarantor in Japan (IPM, in this case). Applying for a visa with this certificate at a Japanese embassy or consulate is recommended as it will speed up the visa application process significantly.

Link: externarl linkMinistry of Foreign Affairs of Japan (MOFA)

Table 1. List of documents to be submitted
Status Documents to be submitted Supporting documents
1. Temporary Visitor
  • two official visa application forms, available at the embassy or consulate
  • Valid passport
  • two 45mm x 45mm passport-type photos taken within the previous six month
  • Airfare tickets
  • Letter of Guarantee (Form designated by MOFA)
  • Reason for Invitation (Form designated by MOFA)
  • Schedule for visit
  • Letter of Invitation (from IPM)
  • Letter of Guarantee (from IPM)
2. Cultural Activities
3. College student
4. Dependent
5. Professor
  • Certificate of Eligibility (Applied for by IPM)
  • Letter of Invitation (from IPM)
  • Letter of Guarantee (from IPM)
  • Additional documents are required (Contact the COE-21 Office)

Table2. Most Common Nonimmigrant Visa Categories for visitors to IPM
Type Category Status Description
Short-term Stays Temporary Visitor Visa 1. Temporary Visitor Collaborative researchers staying for 3 months or less, business meetings, international conferences, Sightseeing, visiting relatives, friends
Long-term stays General Visa 2. Cultural Activities Collaborative researchers staying more than 3 months
3. College student Doctor's and Master's Courses students
4. Dependent Family
Working Visa 5. Professor Visiting Professor, Postdoctoral Fellow