By Ilona Kauremszky

Q: I want to take a year off from school and travel to Japan for a couple of weeks. What kind of entry information do I need?

A: A valid Canadian passport is required for Canadians travelling to Japan. Effective November 20, 2007, all visitors to Japan must comply to new entry requirements in which Japanese officials will photograph and fingerprint all visitors upon arrival. The Japan National Tourist Organization notes some exceptions may apply, including children under the age of 16, individuals with special permanent residency and diplomatic visits.

For more information, contact the Immigration Bureau of Japan at

Over at the Consular Affairs Bureau part of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada (, an online report states, “In order to meet immigration requirements, Canadians must be in possession of a return airline ticket, confirmed accommodation arrangements, and proof of sufficient funds.

Canadians have been refused entry into Japan due to their inability to satisfy the immigration authorities that they were in compliance with Japanese laws and immigration regulations concerning residence and employment. Non-compliance with entry requirements may result in deportation or considerable delays.”

Entry permits for tourists are for a maximum stay of 90 days. Overstaying an entry permit or any other type of Japanese visa is a criminal offence. If you overstay your visa you will be subject to deportation and may be barred from re-entry to Japan.


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