Japan Re-entry Permit

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Re-entry Permit to Japan
Japan Re-entry Permit 2012.png
The front cover of a Japan Re-entry Permit.
Date first issued 1951
Issued by  Japan
Type of document Travel Document
Purpose Identification
Eligibility requirements Residents in Japan (who are stateless or are unable to obtain a foreign passport)
Expiration Same as period of stay or 5 years, whichever is shorter
Japan Re-entry Permit Instruction Pages and Personal Information Page.

The Japan Re-entry Permit (再入国許可書?), (or "Re-entry Permit to Japan") is a travel document similar to a certificate of identity, issued by Japan's Ministry of Justice. It is a passport-like booklet with a light brown cover with the words "再入国許可書 RE-ENTRY PERMIT TO JAPAN" on the front.

There is also a stamp type Re-entry Permit (再入国許可?), which is pasted into a foreign passport and serves as a re-entry visa.


The main purpose of the re-entry permit is to allow residents to leave and return to Japan.

In practice, the booklet type re-entry permit is to serve as an international travel document in lieu of a passport for residents of Japan who are stateless or cannot get a passport from their country, such as de facto refugees holding resident status other than as a 1951 Convention Refugee, including those holding a residence status of student, designated activities, etc. under considerations of humanitarian.[1][2][3] It is also used by people whose nationality is not recognized in Japan (e.g. North Korean nationals).

The stamp type re-entry permit serves as a visa.


The travel document type Re-entry Permit is a passport-like booklet containing 28 pages, including instruction pages, personal information page, and visa pages. There is no valid date specified on the personal information page, but the valid date of re-entry to Japan is limited to the stamps shown on visa pages. The stamp-type Japan Re-entry Permit can be pasted into this booklet.


The booklet is free of charge.

However, a seal type Re-entry Permit is required in order to validate this document, with a fee of JP¥3000 (Single) or JP¥6000 (Multiple).


As of 2013, Schengen Area countries which have explicitly indicated to the Council of the European Union's Visa Working Party that they will accept the Japan Re-entry Permit for visa issuance purposes include the Czech Republic, Germany, Estonia, Italy, Lithuania, Hungary, Austria, Portugal, Sweden, and Norway; Spain, France, and Slovakia have explicitly indicated they will not accept it, while other countries did not provide any information on their acceptance of it. Said Re-entry Permit is stated as an "Alien's Travel Document".[4]

Visa Free Access or Visa on Arrival[edit]

Since Japan Re-entry Permit is not a regular national passport, most countries and territories require visa prior to arrival.

The following countries and territories provide visa free access or visa on arrival, as they provide everyone such courtesies.


Countries and territories Entry rights
 Macau Visa issued upon arrival for MOP100 [1]

Re-entry Permit as a Visa (Stamp Type)[edit]

There is also a stamp type Japan Re-entry Permit (再入国許可?), which is pasted into a passport or other travel document.

For those who are traveling outside Japan for longer than 1 year, are required to have a re-entry permit. Normally, the re-entry permit will be applied to a passport in the form of a self-adhesive sticker. For those who do not have a valid passport, a booklet type Re-entry Permit will be issued at the same time as the re-entry Permit stamp issues.

In the new system as of July 2012, the maximum period for a re-entry permit is 6 years.

Special Re-entry Permit[edit]

From July 9, 2012, foreign nationals residing legally in Japan who are leaving Japan for no more than 1 year will not be required to apply for a re-entry permit prior to leaving, but can instead apply for a special re-entry permit at the point of departure.[5] Previously if a foreign national left Japan without a re-entry permit, their visa or legal residency status could be revoked.

The special re-entry permit system does not apply to those falling under any of the following.

  1. those whose resident status is in the process of revocation
  2. those whose confirmation of departure is suspended
  3. those who have received a written detention order
  4. those who are in the process of a refugee application and staying with the resident status of "Designated Activities"
  5. those who are specified by Japan's Ministry of Justice to be a threat to Japan's national interests or public order, or for other good reasons to be in need of a re-entry permit for the sake of fair control of entries and departures

The special re-entry permit is not available for booklet type Re-entry Permit holders and they must have a stamp type re-entry permit on their booklet since the valid date of the booklet Re-entry Permit is limited to the stamp.

See also[edit]