Travelling to Japan soon? Here’s what you need to know

Japan relaxes travel requirements for Singaporeans

Japan is home to neon-lit cities, incredible views, and a gastronomic scene that will blow you away.

Recently, Japan just announced that travellers from selected countries can finally visit even without taking a pre-departure test or a guided tour from 7 September onwards.

As the requirements for Singaporean travellers finally ease for the first time since the pandemic, more people are finally planning their trips to this destination. But before you book your flight, take a look at the restrictions you need to prepare for.

PCR Tests

For travellers entering the country who are fully vaccinated with at least 3 doses of an approved vaccine, they are no longer required to take a negative PCR test. The approved vaccines (vaccine name/major manufacturer) are the following:

  • COMIRNATY intramuscular injection/Pfizer
  • Spikevax intramuscular Injection /Moderna
  • Vaxzevria intramuscular Injection/AstraZeneca
  • JCOVDEN intramuscular injection/Janssen
  • COVAXIN/Bharat Biotech
  • Nuvaxovid intramuscular Injection/Novavax

The vaccination certificate must also be issued by a government or public institution, and it must be indicated in Japanese or English.

More from OMY: Best Travel Insurance with COVID 19 Coverage

Visa Application / ERFS Certificate

Tourists still have to get an ERFS certificate to get a visa to be permitted entry to Japan. You need to seek the help of a legally registered Japan travel agency to use the country’s Entrants, Returnees, Follow-up System, or ERFS to apply. Here’s the process:

  1. Find a travel agency and buy a package tour.
  2. The travel agency will apply for your visa through the ERFS system.
  3. You will be issued a Certificate for Completion of Registration.
  4. After receiving your ERFS certificate, make an appointment at a Japanese embassy for your visa application. Bring the following documents:
  • Completed visa application form
  • Letter from a travel agency with information about your stay
  • Itinerary details
  • Certificate of completion of registration to ERFS
  • Passport and photo of yourself

There are also travel agencies that take care of the visa processing on your behalf.

Your ERFS certificate is valid for three months from the date of issuance. A short-term visa is also valid for three months.

However, the validity is different from the duration you can stay in the country. The former means that you can use your visa to enter Japan within three months from the date of issue, and the latter refers to how long your package tour is. For example, if you booked a one-week tour, your visa may only be valid for 15 days.

Single-entry visa holders cannot re-enter Japan even though it’s within your package tour duration.

Tour packages

Starting last April, Japan opened its borders to foreign students, overseas residents, and business travellers who were sponsored by their employers or schools. They also welcomed a maximum of 20,000 international tourists per day from selected countries, provided they were part of tour groups.

However, that rule will be scrapped starting on 7 September. During that time, 50,000 international tourists are allowed to enter the country per day, and tourists are no longer required to need a guide or book a package tour.

Ready To visit Japan?

Japan is truly one of the most special places in the world, with its scenic landscapes, amazing locals, and one-of-a-kind experiences. Now that you know what you need to do before your Japan trip, you can finally make your vacation planning experience more seamless.

More from OMY: Singapore passport emerges as 2nd most powerful in the world after Japan

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