Japan Reopening to Canadian Travelers: What You Need to Know

Japan Reopening to Canadian Travelers: What You Need to Know

Many travellers have been eagerly awaiting the complete reopening of Japan’s borders for the needs of tourism with bated breath. With every announcement, the nation has been inching in the direction of opening its borders in a painfully sluggish method.

On September 7, Japan will take one other main step in the direction of opening its borders for tourism.

While this does not fairly mark the complete reopening of this much-loved vacation spot, it does imply that Canadian travellers can now embark on unbiased, unaccompanied journey to Japan for the primary time for the reason that begin of the pandemic.

Japan Travel Restrictions

As of September 7, unbiased vacationers might be in a position to enter Japan for the aim of tourism so long as they’ve booked a package deal tour with a Japanese journey company.

Prior to this date, some vacationers have been allowed to enter the nation for tourism, however solely on carefully guarded package deal excursions. With the upcoming adjustments, vacationers will not have to be accompanied all through their keep in Japan.

Shibuya Crossing, Tokyo

Of course, vacationers may have to fullfil different entry obligations, together with displaying proof of vaccination (together with a 3rd booster dose), possessing a legitimate visa (that have to be utilized for prior to entry), and filling out a number of paperwork.

Furthermore, the nation is growing the every day arrival cap to 50,000 on September 7, which is up from the 20,000 every day cap imposed in June. This transfer will permit extra foreigners into arguably probably the most sought-after nation to go to after the world closed down greater than two years in the past.

How Can Canadians Enter Japan?

Until now, enterprise travellers and worldwide college students have been allowed to enter Japan by air, most certainly by way of the nationwide capital of Tokyo. Since June 10, international vacationers have additionally been permitted entry to Japan, however solely on guided excursions.

The uptake of the excursions has been fairly low, which does not come as a lot of a shock.

As of September 7, vacationers coming from Canada should current the next:

  • Proof of vaccination upon getting into Japan
  • A legitimate Japan visa, which requires a package deal tour bought from a licensed journey company in Japan
  • A accomplished well being questionnaire

Eligible Canadian travellers could submit their visa functions electronically through the consulates of Japan in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, or Montreal. Visa functions can take 3-5 enterprise days to course of.

How to Book an Unguided Package Tour to Enter Japan

Prior to reserving making use of for a visa, Canadians will want to e-book an unguided package deal tour to fulfill the brand new entry necessities.

The definition of an “unguided package deal tour” is pretty free, and contains conditions wherein people merely e-book their very own flights and lodges and submit the “tour” itinerary to a Japanese journey company so as to course of a vacationer visa.

This course of is pretty easy, though it nonetheless requires you to bounce over a number of hurdles within the course of. The most important issue right here is that you simply want to have a “Certificate for Completion of Registration to the ERFS system” if you make your visa software.

The ERFS is the “Entrants, Returnees Follow-up System”, which makes it simpler for the federal government to observe anybody who falls unwell with COVID-19 throughout their keep in Japan.

The first step is to discover a licensed journey company who is allowed to promote unguided package deal excursions. Some businesses that we have discovered embrace:

For a payment of ¥30,000 ($280 CAD), Japan Guide Agency can provide an unguided package deal tour that fulfills the Japanese authorities’s necessities. You’ll obtain assist on your visa software, together with data required for the ERFS certificates, which incorporates:

  • A signed and stamped letter from the journey company stating the title, contact quantity, dates of journey, period of keep, names & addresses of lodging in Japan
  • Details of your tour itinerary, together with your every day resort’s title and tackle
  • A certificates of completion of registration within the ERFS

With this data, you may proceed together with your visa software. Once you have obtained the visa, you are all set to journey to Japan on an unguided package deal tour.

My Experience Getting a Japan e-Visa for Tourism

With a view of touring to Japan as quickly as borders are open, I made a decision to apply for a Japan vacationer visa by way of Japan Guide Agency this week. The value of the service was ¥20,000 ($188 CAD) on the time that I had bought the package deal, though it has since risen to ¥30,000 ($280 CAD).

When buying the unguided tour package deal, Japan Guide Agency asks on your flight and resort particulars.

These basically symbolize the “particulars” of your unguided tour, which solely contains your flight and resort. Japan Guide Agency even goes as far as to say that any of those particulars will be modified in a while, as they’re presumably solely used for registration to the ERFS system.

Within 12 hours of my buy, Japan Guide Agency was in a position to subject my ERFS doc. The affirmation e-mail clearly states that “Issei Fujiwara of JGA Inc.” is appearing because the journey company that’s offering me with my unguided tour package deal:

The ERFS doc seems to be as follows:

The subsequent step was to submit an software for a Japan vacationer visa. Canadian and US residents could submit an e-visa by way of the Japan authorities web site, whereas residents of different international locations will want to submit a visa software in-person at their native consulates.

To begin the e-visa software, you may want to first register for an account. Once you have logged in, click on on “New registration” to start a brand new e-visa software.

You’ll then be guided by way of a number of steps of the visa software. You’ll need to embrace “Tourism” as the aim of go to, and the remainder of the fields are pretty easy (names, images, addresses, passport numbers, lodging and flight particulars, and so forth.)

On the final display, you may be requested to submit the “Certificate of Completion of Registration to the ERFS system”. Upload the PDF doc that you simply obtained out of your Japanese journey company right here.

Once that is accomplished, you may submit your e-visa software. You’ll obtain an e-mail affirmation of receipt inside an hour or so.

And though the Japan e-visa web site states that the processing time will be 3–5 enterprise days, I occurred to obtain my newly-minted Japan vacationer e-visa inside the very subsequent day – 15 hours later, to be exact.

Indeed, logging again into the e-visa web site, I used to be in a position to pull up my “Notice of Visa Issuance” – the coveted immigration doc that might be checked prior to my Japan-bound flight!

Current Health Requirements in Japan

March 18, 2022 marked the date that Japan’s state of emergency was lifted in all 18 remaining prefectures, that means that COVID instances have dropped sufficiently low sufficient that life can return to semi-normal.

Restaurants are absolutely open as soon as once more, as are film theaters, museums, cultural occasions, and usually every other vacationer sights. In truth, that is the primary time since October 2021 which can be no gathering or enterprise hour restrictions on eating places and bars in Japan.

Mutekiya
Mutekiya ramen home, Tokyo

Interestingly sufficient, there aren’t any vaccination necessities for any of the above, nor will there be any vaccination checks.

There are nonetheless some minor restrictions in place, equivalent to “non-certified eating places” solely having the ability to seat up to 4 folks per desk, however that should not have a huge impact in your journey.

Masks are required in all indoor areas in addition to all outside the place you “could encounter different folks”, which principally means they’re required on a regular basis. Despite issues being a bit completely different with restrictions at dwelling, remember to maximize your baggage allowance with enough face masks.

The Ritz-Carlton, Kyoto

How to Get to Japan

To East Asia, Aeroplan naturally comes to thoughts with its unbelievable charge of 75,000 factors one-way in enterprise class, so long as the general routing falls at or below 7,500 miles in distance flown — which incorporates all direct flights from North America.

West Coast residents particularly will profit from Aeroplan’s unbelievable candy spot of solely 55,000 factors one-way for a direct flight from Vancouver or Calgary to Tokyo.

Air Canada flights can nonetheless be exorbitantly priced below dynamic pricing, so utilizing your eUpgrades with the “Latitude Attitude” technique is the optimum approach to improve right into a enterprise class seat.

For those that dabble within the US bank card sport, you may e-book a one-way journey in ANA First Class for simply 55,000 Virgin Atlantic miles from the West Coast and 60,000 Virgin Atlantic miles from the East Coast.

This is arguably the perfect candy spot that at the moment exists on the market, and there is nothing fairly like bottomless Hibiki 21 whiskey and Japanese high-quality eating within the sky to have a good time Japan’s long-awaited reopening.

With Alaska Mileage Plan, you may also fly direct on Japan Airlines for 60,000 miles in enterprise class 70,000 miles in First Class, one other glorious candy spot to goal for in your first tutorial or business go to to Japan within the post-pandemic period.

Japan Airlines First Class award house is kind of plentiful 14 days prior to the date of departure.

Conclusion

After what seems like an eternity of being closed off to the world, Japan is one step nearer to being absolutely open once more.

Have your proof of vaccination, unguided package deal tour, vacationer visa, and numerous types and statements prepared to current for entry in to Japan.

We’ll proceed to replace this text as Japan’s restrictions ease even additional. One factor’s for positive: count on flights to Japan to be packed When the nation lastly absolutely reopens for tourism with no visa restrictions, so now could also be the perfect time to expertise Japan with comparatively few guests but.

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