Renewing/ Extending Your Japanese Working Holiday Visa

To renew your Japanese working holiday visa

(I renewed/ extended mine twice in Okinawa 2014 and 2015 respectively as an Australian.)

1. Ring up or visit the local immigration office in the area you live in to check what documents you need in advance.

2. Prepare and bring all the documents such as residence card, passport, and the application form with reason (s) considered or pre-filled in advance how you justify the reason for the renewal/ extension.

3. Go to the local immigration office and pay the fee, 4000 yen.

4. Wait for the processing time and there you go. (Please the tips below.)

 

Tips

-You can renew / extend it 3 months prior to your expiry date.

e.g. Expiry date is on 5th July 2015 then you can renew it after 5th April 2015.

-Just to make sure you get the right information, it is strongly recommended to call the local immigration office the area where you are staying and go to see them to cross reference what you need for renewing your visa as instead of just sticking to the guidelines that The Ministry of Justice provides.

-The first time you renew you can get the result and the new residence card on the same day.

However, the second time you do it, the process will be around 2 weeks to 1 month.

 

The Ministry of Justice

Japanese: http://www.moj.go.jp/

English: http://www.moj.go.jp/ENGLISH/index.html

 

Immigration Procedures Guidebook and Application Forms

Japanese: http://www.immi-moj.go.jp/index.html

English: http://www.immi-moj.go.jp/english/tetuduki/index.html

中文: http://www.immi-moj.go.jp/chinese/index.html

Korean: http://www.immi-moj.go.jp/korean/index.html

Portuguese: http://www.immi-moj.go.jp/portuguese/index.html

Spanish: http://www.immi-moj.go.jp/spanish/index.html

 

To view more information about getting a Japanese working holiday visa, please click here.

Good luck!

 

P.S. I will be staying in Okinawa till October 2015 at the moment.

  14 comments for “Renewing/ Extending Your Japanese Working Holiday Visa

  1. Winnie
    7 June, 2016 at 11:59 am

    Hi Okina! My name is Winnie and I would like to ask you some questions about extending the Japanese working holiday visa.May I ask, was the extension of the WHV from the date that it would have expired? or It was from the date that the extension is approved?As I can renew the visa 3 months prior to my expiry date. If I renew it 3 months earlier, will I lost 3 months? (As the extension is from the date that the extension is approved)Thank you!

    • 7 June, 2016 at 3:59 pm

      Hi Winnie,

      How are you?
      Thank you for your questions. Please see the answers below:
      1. The extension is from the date that is approved.
      2. So if you renew 3 months earlier, you will lose the 3 months.
      I suggest you renew just a month before.

      Just a reminder, I would strongly recommend that you go to the local immigration office in the area you currently
      live in and double check the condition with them based on your nationality as soon as possible. So you have enough
      time to prepare and get things right in one shot.

      The reason is that the information on the official website from immigration office contains most of the information
      you need but some details may very slightly depending on the area you live currently. As I hold a business visa
      (transferred my WHV to Business Visa) now, the required documents did vary slightly in the initial application
      between Okinawa and mainland Japan.

  2. Leon Jimenez
    23 October, 2016 at 12:05 am

    Hi there
    I was in Japan on a working holiday from November last year.
    I came back to Australia without extending my visa for when I come back.
    Is there any way i can go go back to Japan on a working holiday visa November this year?

    • 23 October, 2016 at 6:08 am

      Hi Leon,

      Thank you for your question.
      To jump to the conclusion, the answer is that unfortunately you are not able to use this working holiday visa anymore due to the reasons below:

      1. The working holiday visa holder needs to obtain the re-entry permission from the local immigration office where they currently stay in before leaving Japan if they want to leave for longer period of time and come back to Japan with the same visa without losing its valid period of stay left.
      2. When the working holiday visa holder leaves Japan without filling in the re-entry card (tick with permission or no need for permission like leaving Japan just for a week) and give it to the custom, the visa will immediately becomes expired.
      3. Everyone can only use the working holiday visa once in their life. When it’s expired, you can’t re-use or revive it unless you have the permission mentioned in point 1.

      Your other options now will be getting a cultural visa or business working visa.

      Hope the above anwsered your question.

      Cheers,
      Okina

  3. Tom
    26 October, 2016 at 7:20 am

    Hello I have a working holiday visa October 20th with expiry of Oct 20th 2017 but I arrive in japan mid December and it says I can stay 6 months? so does that mean that I lose the time from Oct 20th to mid December? or does it start when I enter japan and after 6 months of entering japan I have to renew for another six months to make it a full year? Also it’s possible to extend even after I’ve done a year in japan?

    • 26 October, 2016 at 4:51 pm

      Hi Tom,
      Thank you for your question.

      The answers here are based on if you hold the Australian passport when applied.
      1. When you apply and obtained the Japanese working holiday visa, the visa itself
      is valid for 1 year before you enter Japan.
      2.Once you enter Japan, the visa only allows you to stay 6 months if you hold
      the Australian passport when applied. This is without any application of visa extension yet.
      3. The visa starts counting the 6 months period from the first day you enter Japan.
      4. Generally, any country’s working holiday visa will be valid up to 1 year or 18 months
      with the visa renewal (extension).
      5. Australian can apply up to 2 extension (each extension is valid for 6 months), which
      makes it up to 18 months in total and also is the maximum staying period for the working
      holiday visa holder. So after 1 year (1 extension), you can apply for the second
      (also the last) extension.

      Note
      ・the second visa extension is not always guaranteed.

      Hope the above answered your questions.

      Cheers,
      Okina

  4. Michael
    2 March, 2017 at 5:45 am

    Hi Guys!I\’m currently working in Nozawa Onsen as a Ski Instructor and arrived in Japan on November the 25th, 2016. I\’ll be leaving at the end of may but I\’m hoping to come back December 2017 for the next winter season. Is there any possibility of pausing a WHV twice? I\’m Australian so I have 18 months. If not, would I have to extend the visa twice before I leave so it\’ll last till my arrival?

  5. Kristina
    31 March, 2017 at 12:20 pm

    Hi Okina!
    So I am going to Japan in September this year and I have two jobs lined up! one from Sep-Feb then another from March – Sep ! Will I, as an Australian, be able to extend my visa for the 1 year with no problems??

    Thanks, Kristina

    • 31 March, 2017 at 5:46 pm

      Hi Kristina,

      Thank you for the questions.
      There should not be a problem as you’ve got 2 jobs lined up. The rest is to make sure when you are going to
      extend the visa, you have good working history for the first job in Japan, well prepared documents, and a good written letter of reason why you would like to stay for another 6 months apart from you have another job lined up for you.

      Passion to explore more of Japanese culture, what you can contribute to Japan and how you going to use what you’ve experienced in Japan after you go back to Australia will help with the application.

      Good Luck!

      Cheers,
      Okina

  6. Hayden
    8 April, 2017 at 11:07 am

    HI Okina,

    i just finished working in japan on a working holiday visa and i absolutely loved it and would love to go back next year, but the problem is i had to leave japan before i had a chance to renew/extend my visa.
    Is there a way i can extend my visa from home, in australia, or a way i can get someone who is still in japan to do it for me?

    Thanks!
    Hayden

    • 8 April, 2017 at 2:19 pm

      Hi Hayden,

      Glad to hear that you enjoyed it a lot in Japan.

      Just to make sure, did you get a fill in a re-entry form when you left Japan at the airport?

      If not, I’m afraid that your working holiday visa is already and automatically expired once you leave Japan without filling a re-entry form. If that is the case, I’m sorry that the once in a life time working holiday visa of yours is invalid and cannot be revived again.

      Cheers,
      Okina

      • Hayden
        9 April, 2017 at 1:25 am

        Hi Okina, thanks for the reply.

        Yes i did get a reentry permit when i left japan, does that mean i would have to go back to japan to renew it?

        • 12 April, 2017 at 4:03 am

          Hi Hayden,

          Sorry for the late reply.
          Yes, you can only apply the extension in Japan.

          Just be aware that there are also 2 types of re-entry permit. One extends the period of stay when you leave Japan temporarily, the other only allows you to leave Japan temporarily but doesn’t extend the period of stay.
          So it depends on which one you get though.

          Hope it help.

          Cheers,
          Okina

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