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How to Apply for Japan Tourist Visa
Story by: jovy avisado ( Member ) on 2018-09-20
(Updated in July 2020)

1. Determine the type of visa you need

There are various types of Japan visa you can apply for: tourist visa, transit visa, visiting friends and relatives visa, visa for medical stay, etc. But for this particular guide, requirements for a tourist visa for Philippine passport holders will only be discussed. 

The Japanese Embassy can grant 15, 30 and 90 days of stay. If it’s your first time applying for a tourist visa, it is safe to request for 15 days or less.

2. Know the required documents needed

a. Philippine Passport

If your photo has broken lamination, it will NOT be accepted. Make sure as well that your passport is valid for 6 months prior to your intended travel date, has your signature on page 3 of your passport and has at least two (2) blank pages.

b. A duly accomplished Japan visa application form

Print the Japan visa application form in A4 sized paper
Download the application form here. You can type your information on the form then print (back-to-back); otherwise, if you’re going to fill it out by hand, make sure that there will be NO ERASURES. It’s highly suggested to write in print or in capitalized letters too.
Completely fill out the form properly and don’t forget to affix your signature. Put “N/A” in all spaces that are not applicable specifically in page 2 which details are intended for application with invitation in Japan.

Note: There are sections at the form that ask for your airline and hotel name; however, this DOES NOT mean that you are required to book your flight and hotel beforehand. Just write your intended airline to book with and the hotel you plan to stay in should your Japan visa is approved. If you’re going to stay in multiple hotels, just pick one to write on the form.

c. 4.5cm x 4.5cm photo (white background)

Photo must be most recent (at least taken for the last 6 months). Write your name and birth date on the back side of your photo and paste it on the application form. Photos that are pixelated or low resolution will not be accepted. 

d. PSA (formerly known as NSO) Birth Certificate (Original Copy)

Birth certificate must be acquired within the year of your application date. 

In case your birth certificate is unreadable or if you have no record in PSA or NSO, in addition to “Certificate of Non-Record” from PSA headquarters, please submit your birth certificate from the local civil registrar.
Or, if your PSA is of “Late Registration”, submit:
- Baptismal Certificate – must have complete address and telephone information of the church
- School Record (Form 137) – must have complete address and contact information of the school

e. Marriage Certificate (if married) Original Copy

Marriage certificate must be obtained within the year of your application. Widowed and annulled individuals are still required to submit the marriage certificate.

f. Daily schedule in Japan

In layman’s term, this is your daily itinerary or activities in Japan. Your itinerary should start and end with the date of your arrival and departure. You can download the form here.

g. Proof of income

For employed:

Latest copy of ITR Form 2316 or from the previous year if it has not been issued yet within the year of your application;
Certificate of employment
Bank Certificate (must be issued within 3 months)

For self-employed:

Latest copy of ITR Form 2316 or from the previous year if it has not been issued yet within the year of your application;
If you have your own business, submit your business registration issued by DTI (also known as DTI Permit) *If you DO NOT have an ITR, write a simple letter explaining why you’re unable to submit it (example: if it’s a newly established business, a new self-employed, you are being taxed in another country, etc)
Bank Certificate (must be issued within 3 months)

For OFW in the Philippines:

Tax exemption form from BIR (Visit the BIR office nearest your residence)
Certificate of employment or copy of employment contract
Bank Certificate (must be issued within 3 months)

For unemployed (minors or students, housewives, househusbands):

If you’re a minor or student, one of your parents should primarily act as your guarantor (any family member as secondary). If you’re a housewife or househusband, your spouse should primarily act as your guarantor (any family member as secondary). If you are a parent without financial documents, one of your children should primarily act as your guarantor. If you are an employee who will join the company incentive trip without financial documents, your employer should be your guarantor.

The guarantor should provide below documents:

Guarantee letter using Japan Embassy format (must be in A4-sized paper and signed by the guarantor)
Photocopy of passport or any valid ID of the guarantor
Photocopy of valid multiple-entry Japan visa page of the guarantor (if there's any)
Guarantor’s bank certificate
Income Tax Return of the guarantor (2316 if employed, 1701 if self-employed, 1702 if corporate) *please provide an explanation letter if unavailable
Certificate of employment (if guarantor is employed)
         DTI Business Permit (if guarantor is self-employed)
         SEC Certificate (if guarantor is company)
         Pictures together - at least 3 photos (if guarantor is a friend)
If guarantor is an OFW, see required documents above.
Certificate of Enrollment of the minor / student applicant (not a basis requirement but can be a supporting document)
         PSA document (original copy and recently acquired) to prove relationship *PSA documents are required even with used Japan visa on passport.

Relationship to Guarantor

Add’l PSA document/s

Wife / Husband

Marriage Certificate


Birth Certificate


Birth Certificate of Guarantor

Auntie / Uncle

Birth Certificate of Guarantor (Niece/Nephew) and Parent of the Guarantor related to the Applicant

Niece / Nephew

Birth Certificate of Guarantor (Auntie / Uncle) and Parent of the Applicant related to the Guarantor

Important Notes:

1. All documents to be submitted must be original. It’s best to keep a photocopy as the Embassy will not return your documents. If document submitted is verified by the Embassy as fake or tampered, your visa application will be automatically denied.
2. Applicants are exempted from submitting birth certificate and/or marriage certificate if they can submit old/valid passports with used Japan visa and can support his/her application with financial documents. However, if it’s family or group application with guarantor, applicant is still required to submit PSA documents or other requirements whichever is applicable to prove relationship.
3. Reason for the denial of visa will not be disclosed even if an inquiry is made. At the same time, if visa application is denied, applicant may only re-apply for the same purpose after six (6) months.

3. Choose an accredited travel agency to process your application

Sadly, walk-in Japan visa applicants are not allowed in Japan Embassy. Only accredited travel agencies can submit and have your application processed for a fee (which varies depending on the agency). Universal Holidays Inc. (UHI)  is ranked as AAA Category by Japan Embassy here in the Philippines. So if you're looking for a great deal on Japan tourist visa processing, you may visit their website.

4. Wait for the result of your application

This is the last thing to do and the most nerve-wracking after you’ve forwarded your application. It usually takes 2-7 working days before you get a call, email or text message from your travel agent to notify you that your passport is ready for pickup.  If your visa is approved, you will see the visa stamp inside your passport and your travel agent will explain the visa issued upon release of your passport and you will notice the white barcode sticker (Embassy barcode)  at the back of your passport. (if it’s a red sticker, your visa has been denied).

Japan Visa Application Tips:

1. Submit a neatly filled out application form

Japanese are known to be organized, meticulous and neat. Hence, a neatly filled out visa application form will initially earn you a good point. If you can, fill out the form electronically via your laptop or desktop then have it printed to avoid any erasures. Just make you have it printed on a clean A4 paper and don’t forget to affix your handwritten signature.

2. Make sure to prepare ALL needed documents

Don’t get too excited submitting your application when you have incomplete documents. Travel agencies usually do not accept and process applications when all necessary documents are not provided. It also doesn’t harm to submit other documents that are not included on the list as long as it’ll prove your strong economic and social ties to the Philippines.

3. Don’t apply too early or too late

Japan visa is only valid for three (3) months from the date it was approved. It is highly advisable to apply two months before your preferred travel date. Though you can have the result of your visa application in as fast as 2-3 days, it is not recommended to apply 2 weeks before your travel date as supplementary documents may be requested.

So, who's excited to travel to Japan soon? You may visit and let Japan travel experts help you with the first step to your dream Japan travel!

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