As with all other countries, you won’t be given a Japanese study visa if you haven’t been admitted to a school in Japan yet. So, there is nothing like prior application, once you get a letter of admission you have to start the processing right away. Japanese immigration is a bit more thorough compared to some other countries and their visa application can take more time but it all rides on whether you have your certificate of eligibility or not. Having a certificate of eligibility will reduce the amount of time that the embassy takes for processing.
You need the following for processing your Japan study visa:
- Certificate of Eligibility
The COE is perhaps the most important document in this list as you would have to get this before even starting your visa processing. As compared to other purposes, you do not need to get an application for your COE if you are applying for a student visa, your school will take care of it along with your admission letters but you will still need to send them the documents required. The school will send you the information on which documents to send.
- The Student Visa Application Form: signed by you and the nearest Japanese Embassy or Consulate.
Before leaving your country, of course, you had to have filled out a visa application form. Your application has to be signed by you and the Japanese Embassy in your home country. Elements of falsehood can lead to your application being delayed or rejected so do not make any honest mistakes.
- A valid passport and photocopies of the passport
You must also have a valid passport that should still be valid for at least 6 months after your date of departure from the country. It must also have two blank spaces to add your visa.
- Passport sized pictures taken within the last three months
Take a passport-sized photograph with a plain background, eyes, and ears visible and the picture must be of good quality. The recommended size of about 4cm x 3cm and it must be a recent photo.
- A Letter of Admission from your Japanese school
This is a sample letter of invitation or letter of guarantee from your Japanese university, that details what you will be studying and for how long. It might also state if you need to work while you are with them. All in all, it contains all the conditions of your visit. This document would be sent to you, so don’t rush into anything yet if you are yet to receive it.
- Previous academic or professional qualifications such as transcripts and diplomas.
If you have previously run an academic session in another school in your home country or elsewhere, you can provide the documents detailing your qualifications and diplomas.
- Proof you can meet the financial requirements for the duration of your studies in Japan
Pertinent to visa application is proof that you can financially sustain yourself during your stay in the country. You can prove this by providing bank or income statements, proof of scholarship, or a letter of sponsorship of financial aid from a third party, in case someone is supporting you throughout your studies.
- Proof of Accommodation
If the school will be providing a place then that would have already been stated in the letter of invitation but if not, then you might need to seek this out yourself, and likewise, you will need to bring the evidence that you have a place stay during the years of your study.
Not a document though, but just as important. Immediately after you arrive in Japan, you will receive a Landing Permit; which is more important than your visa. You will also be given some documents which are your permission to stay, you lose them, then you might have to go back home. Then you should also note that on arriving in Japan, you have about two weeks to report your stay at the local municipal offices.