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Immigration Information for Exchange Students

It is very important for international students coming to study in Japan to be aware of immigration procedures and deadlines for obtaining a student Visa before arriving in Japan, as well as other immigration related policies and requirements while residing here. The sections below give basic information on immigration procedures required before and after you arrive in Japan. Please refer to information provided by the Japanese Embassy or Consulate in your country, or contact the Student Exchange Division at TUFS for more detailed information.

Coming to Japan

Obtaining a Student Visa

International students require both a valid passport and a ‘College Student’ Visa authorized by a Japanese Embassy or Consulate to enter Japan. In order to obtain the Visa, you must apply at your local Japanese Embassy or Consulate. You will be asked to submit a Letter of Student Authorization as well as a Certificate of Eligibility, both of which will be sent to you by the Student Exchange Division Office at TUFS, when applying. The Letter of Student Authorization is issued by the university to certify that you have been accepted as an exchange student at TUFS. The Certificate of Eligibility is your proof to immigration control officials in your country and here that you are indeed eligible to enter Japan.

You can get the application form for Certificate Eligibility from our web-site (Application Procedures for Exchange Programs ). Once you have filled out and returned this form to us, we will apply on your behalf for the Certificate of Eligibility at the Japanese Ministry of Justice’s Immigration Office in Japan. This usually takes about one month to be issued, but may take over two months in some cases. It is therefore important that you return the Application for Certificate of Eligibility form to us as early as possible and especially before any application deadlines we have listed. Also, depending on the applicant, the Immigration Office may require other specific documents in order to issue the Certificate of Eligibility. If you receive a request from TUFS for such documents, please respond to the instructions that we send you as quickly as possible. Once, we have received your Certificate of Eligibility from the Immigration Office we will mail it to you. You should then take it immediately to the Japanese Embassy or Consulate in your home country, along with other required documents (e.g., Passport, Visa Application, Letter of Authorization, etc.), in order to apply for your Visa.

In addition to being required when you apply for your Visa in the Japanese Embassy or Consulate in your home country, both the Letter of Student Authorization and the Certificate of Eligibility are also necessary to disembark into Japan. Therefore, make sure to bring these documents with you when entering Japan in order to show them the Japanese immigration officer who will process you at the airport. Please be aware that TUFS cannot guarantee the issuance of your Certificate of Eligibility or Visa, and therefore your entry into Japan, as these are the decisions of the Government of Japan, In general, however, only rarely are these documents not issued to students who wish to come study at TUFS and who have submitted all the required forms by their prescribed deadlines.

After Arrival

Alien Registration

Within the first 90 days of arriving in Japan, all non-Japanese nationals (citizens of other countries) who intend to remain in the country for more than 90 days must register at their local town or city office to obtain an Alien Registration Card. You are required to carry this card at all times during your stay in Japan, and you will be asked to show it when you open a bank account, or need to show an official form of identification. You will need to take your Passport and 2 photographs (4.5cm by 3.5cm) with you when applying for the Alien Registration Card.

National Health Insurance

International students at TUFS should apply for National Health Insurance and the associated Foreign Student Discount at the same time as when applying for the Certificate of Alien Registration at the local town or city office. National Health Insurance costs about \1,000 per month for international students, and covers 70% of medical expenses in the event of illness or injury.

During Your Studies

Leaving and Re-Entering Japan

International students at TUFS who would like to leave Japan during their studies to travel abroad or visit their home countries must obtain a Re-Entry Permit before leaving the country. If you leave Japan without a Re-Entry Permit, your Visa will become invalid and you will be required to repeat the entire process as described above to obtain a new Visa before you can re-enter Japan to resume your studies here.

Single and Multiple Re-Entry Permits are handled at the Tokyo Regional Immigration Offices in Shinagawa and Tachikawa. A Single Re-Entry Permit allows you to leave and Re-Enter Japan once during the period of validity of your Visa, and requires a fee of \3000. A Multiple Re-Entry Permit allows you to leave and re-enter Japan as many times as you like during the period of validity of your Visa, and requires a fee of \6000. Both Permits are generally issued on the same day as the application is submitted. You will need to take your Passport and Certificate of Alien Registration Card with you when applying for a Re-entry Permit.

Working Part-Time

International students in Japan on a ‘College Student’ Visa are allowed to work part-time. However, you are required to apply for and obtain a Work Permit before beginning any part-time work. You should apply for a Work Permit at the Tokyo Regional Immigration Office in Shinagawa or Tachikawa.

Other Procedures

There are several other immigration related procedure relevant to international students living in Japan, such as Change of Address, Extension of Period of Stay, and Change of Visa Status, that have to be taken care of either at the local town or city office or at an immigration office. Please inquire about these procedures at the TUFS Student Exchange Division Office for more information.

Contact Us
3-11-1, Asahi-cho, Fuchu-shi, Tokyo 183-8534, Japan
Tel:+81-42-330-5184 Fax:+81-42-330-5189
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