Prior to the Application

Q: I want to go to Japan. Do I need a visa?
A: Yes, you do. However, people of some countries do not need a visa if their period of stay in Japan is 90 days or less (Short-term stay) and they are not going to be engaged in income-earning activities. Refer to the List of Countries that have Visa Exemption Arrangements with Japan.
Q: Can I apply for a visa at the nearest Japanese Embassy / Consulate General while traveling in a foreign country?
A: You can apply for the visa at the Japanese Embassy / Consulate General in your own country (region) or country (region) of residence (if there is more than one, apply to the Japanese Embassy / Consulate General nearest from where you live). In other words, you cannot apply for a visa at your travel destination; however, if there are unavoidable circumstances, consult with the Japanese Embassy / Consulate General where you would like to apply for the visa before making the application.
Q: I will be staying near airport in Japan for one night to transit to a flight leaving Japan the next day. Do I need a visa?
A: If you are a Kosovo national, you need to obtain a “Transit Visa.”
Q: I would like to visit Japan to marry my fiancé living in Japan. Which visa should I apply for?
A: If your purpose of trip is for marriage, you should apply for a Short-term stay (Visiting Relatives/Acquaintances) Visa.
Q: I wish to work in Japan, but have not found any employment yet. Is it possible to enter Japan as a tourist (Short-term stay) first, and then change my status of residence from “Temporary Visitor” to a status of residence which permits me to work, once I have found work in Japan?
A: You may have problems on arrival and you may not be permitted to enter Japan if you undergo immigration inspection as a temporary visitor despite your real intention being to stay for a long period to work or settle. Also, you will not always be permitted to change your status of residence even if you are given permission to enter as a “Temporary Visitor.” Accordingly, please ensure that you apply for the appropriate visa with a “Certificate of Eligibility” at an Embassy/Consulate-General of Japan before you depart for Japan.

About Certificate of Eligibility (COE)

Q: What is a “Certificate of Eligibility (COE)”?
A: Japanese immigration law stipulates that the Ministry of Justice (Immigration Services Agency) has the authority to consider, based on an application, whether a foreign national wishing to enter Japan satisfies the requirements for landing related to the status of residence and to issue a document certifying the status of residence to which the activities to be engaged in correspond. This document is known as a “Certificate of Eligibility,” which is issued by a “Regional immigration Services bureau” in Japan.
If you wish to stay for a long period in Japan to work or study or training…etc. Please obtain a certificate through your representative in Japan.
Applying for a Visa with a Certificate of Eligibility makes the visa issuance process faster and more straightforward.
Q: What should I do to get a Certificate of Eligibility?
A: Ask your representative inside Japan to consult with their nearest Regional Immigration Services Bureau
Q: The Certificate of Eligibility will not arrive by the time I apply for a visa. Can I still apply for a visa with its copy?
A: From March 17, 2023, it will be possible to receive a Certificate of Eligibility (COE) by email and to apply for landing by presenting the email. When applying for a visa, the application can be accepted by presenting the email or submitting the printed copy. For those who have a paper Certificate of Eligibility, they can also apply for landing and a visa by submitting its printed copy after March 17.

Applying and Issued

Q: How long is the application examination period?
A: The standard processing period, when it does not have any problem on contents of the application, takes “Five working days from the next day” after the date of the acceptance of application. Please note that it may take more than 5 working days (ranging from a couple of weeks to several months) in such cases where additional confirmation is required (submission of additional documents, an interview with the applicant, inquiries, etc.), or when a visa application is made for a long-term stay without a Certificate of Eligibility. Thus, visa applicants are recommended to apply early for their visa well in advance of the anticipated travel date.
Q: Why was I asked to provide additional documents?
A: Sometimes additional information will be required for the examination process, and sometimes you will be asked in the process to submit extra documents in addition to the documents indicated as the necessary documents. Each applicant has different conditions and circumstances, and sometimes we do not become aware of these until the application has been accepted, therefore there are some documents that we do not ask everyone to submit from the beginning. If you do not submit the additional documents, the examination cannot be processed any further, and you will not be able to get the visa issued.
Q: My departure date is approaching so could you issue the visa as soon as possible?
A: We cannot make a decision about whether to issue or reject the visa application until the necessary examination has been completed. We process the applications fairly in the order in which we received them. Apply for the visa as soon as possible once your travel plan has been decided.
Q: How many unused visa pages do I need to have remaining in my passport when I apply for a visa?
A: A Japanese visa needs one full visa page and the Japanese immigration authorities need at least half a visa page for landing permission and departure confirmation stamps, therefore “at least one and a half pages” are essential at the time of visa application. If your passport does not have enough remaining pages, you should make sure that you first obtain a new passport or supplement of visa pages before making an application. Please note that we cannot use any pages other than designated visa pages to issue a visa seal or immigration stamp.
Q: How much extra validity do I need to have on my passport at the time of entry to Japan?
A: The relevant Japanese law does not have a specific regulation regarding this matter. However, if your passport is going to expire soon after you enter Japan, it will be necessary for you to renew or extend the validity of your passport at your country’s Embassy/Consulate-General in Japan, however, some of them may not have such a passport service. Therefore, you are strongly recommended to enter Japan on a passport which will be “valid for longer than your planned period of stay”.
Q: Can you tell me why you rejected my visa application.
A: No, we cannot. The reason for the rejection is that your application did not correspond to the criteria of visa issuance. We do not give you the specific reason of the rejection.
Q: Why can't I reapply immediately after my visa application was rejected?
A: We do not accept your visa application if your previous application was rejected and you will apply for the same purpose of visit within “six months” from the rejection. This is because if, for example, we accept the same application the day after it was rejected, the circumstances of the applicant would not change so that the result of examination would be the same.
Q: Can I pay visa issuance fees with a credit card?
A: No, Embassy of Japan in Kosovo, we accept cash only. For your information, you will not be required to pay visa issuance fees if the visa is not issued.

After visa Issuance

Q: I want to postpone my travel. Until when is my visa valid?
A: The period of validity of a single-entry visa (that becomes invalid as soon as once you enter Japan) is basically three months. Enter Japan within three months of the issuance of the visa. If you wish to postpone your travel for longer than three months, you will be required to make another visa application.
Q: I lost my passport with my Japanese visa in it. What should I do?
A: Contact the Japanese Embassy / Consulate General that issued the visa to inform what happened. Also, it is recommended that you submit a lost property form to the local police station. If you need a new visa, you must make an application again.
Q: Since my passport with a valid Japanese visa has expired, I have obtained a new passport. Would it be possible for me to use the Japanese visa which is in the expired passport when I undergo an immigration inspection at the airport?
A: You can show both the new passport and the old passport with the visa at border control.
Q: I will stay in Japan for 3 YEARS as a spouse of Japanese national, but, the period of validity of my visa of “Spouse of Japanese National” is 3 MONTHS from 2 March 2024 to 2 June 2024. I am wondering if it is a misprinted visa and the correct one is 3 YEARS?
A: The period of validity on a visa does not indicate the period which the visa holder can stay in Japan but the available period of time within which the person has to use it. Please be reminded that you must undergo an immigration inspection at nearest Regional Immigration Services Bureau before that expiry date since the visa becomes invalid once that period of validity has elapsed.