People scrambled at the famous Shibuya Crossing in Tokyo, Japan.
Applying Tourist Visa Japan

Denied Japan Tourist Visa Applications in the Philippines 2016

Japan Tourist Visa application, policies, and requirements are subject to change. If you wish to apply for a visa, you should always do more research about your current case or situation.

I’ve heard many horrific stories about visa refusal to Japan, especially when applying for a tourist visa. Some of them might already book their hotels and tours, perfectly planned the itinerary and excited to meet their family or friends in Japan.

Whenever someone is denied a visa, the Japanese Embassy in Manila won’t disclose the reason for refusal, they will instead put a little stamp about the date the visa is rejected and that will sit there forever. But we’ve heard cases from people and we identified things that cause unsuccessful visa application.

Rejected Tourist Visa Cases from Filipinos

Requirements for a tourist visa is clearly posted in Japan Embassy website. Making your documents in a wrong way might lead you to visa denial. Here are some lessons that might help your visa be approved.

  1. You cannot trick them with your bank balance.

    This is according to my bank manager, who is my friend as well. I asked them if somebody called from the embassy regarding my bank details and to my surprise, the embassy checked my transactions for the past three months.

    Lesson learned: the embassy will know that you deposited big amount in a single transaction just to show them you have big or enough balance, better think twice, especially if you are a woman traveling alone. What you can do is deposit the money little by little 4 months before your application. (This only applies to those who got small balance in their bank accounts.)

  2. Follow their instruction, not on what you think is right.

    I told my sister to submit her bank certificate only. Since she applied an American and Schengen visas which require bank statement, she thinks that the Japanese Embassy prefer bank statement than a certificate. She then submitted a bank statement despite my warning. Take note that the Japanese Embassy don’t want you to enter Japan if you don’t know how to read or follow instruction.

    I know it doesn’t make sense to get denied by submitting a bank statement but that’s the embassy’s requirement. Agencies will also ask you to give them certificate instead of statement. Isn’t it easy to get a certificate than a bank statement?

  3. The Embassy is worried about your safety.

    Well, all you need is to have travel history especially if you are a lady. You can have stamps in Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia and Singapore first before entering Japan. I know three cases of young applicants got denied and three of them have no travel history and the embassy might think you are not ready to travel alone. They are just worried about your safety, my dear.

    Related: Japan Visa Application Got Denied? Here’s my Horror Story

    In my case, I traveled ASEAN first before I applied for Japan Tourist Visa and I got mine the next day. I was 20 years old that time.

    Related: How I got my Japan Tourist Visa after one day

  4. They know if your purpose in Japan is to find job and work.

    An OFW, submitted his/her contract and an employment letter but has no working or business visa attached in his or her passport.

    The embassy will deny your visa right away. No explanation needed.

    But there’s hope. Get a working visa and a new contract. When you apply for a visa to any country, especially to OECD countries like Japan, never declare any employment using a tourist visa.

  5. They know your lifestyle

    The reason why you need to submit a proof of income is to make sure you can sustain your travel in Japan. The embassy is smart enough to know if you can afford to travel around Japan or not. Submitting an itinerary with expensive places and tours such as first class Shinkansen, five-star accommodation, premium activities, even how sophisticated your itinerary is, if your income will not support it, they will reject your application.

    Simply because they know you can not sustain your trip especially if your fund is not sufficient. Lesson learned is, only include places, activities or tours that you think you can afford. Make sure to have a little amount for emergency as well.

    When you get your visa, your can do whatever you want anyway.

  6. Met your strange boyfriend/girlfriend online? They know it.

    You applied for a visa and wrote this as your purpose of visit. Well again, the embassy just want you to go safe and they have obligation to keep their citizens away from harm just like what other countries are doing.

    There is a great chance of visa denial if you will not provide any legit proof of your relationship with that person in Japan.

    The strongest evidence I ever heard is passport stamps and a picture of you together. Say, two of you traveled to France with the same flight number, date stamp and had a photo together in front of Eiffel Tower.

    Submit two or more original photos and copy of your partner’s passport stamp. Make sure that you submit a clear photo, and it would be better if you hugged your jowa in that photo.

    Warning: do NOT submit a fake photo. Don’t forget that Japan is 20 years advanced than us.

  7. They know if you fake your purpose of travel.

    Your visa will be refused if your Filipino friend in Japan is blacklisted, breached the visa condition, has a criminal background in both countries or illegally working in Japan. Lack of evidence proving your relationship with your friend might also lead to visa denial especially if your friend is Japanese. You can submit supporting documents such as:

    • School Year Book – proving that you graduated in the same school
    • Company ID’s – present both ID’s proving that your friend is your coworker before
    • Photos – to prove that you met him prior to your arrival in Japan
    • Membership cards – to prove that two of you belong to a certain group such as golf clubs
    • Passport Stamps and Boarding Passes – to prove that you had traveled together

    Warning: do NOT submit a fake photo so you can sleep well while waiting for your visa.

  8. They can see small details in your application

    Some people got denied because of their COE’s. Here are some contents in your COE that will make your visa rejected:

    • Purpose of travel mistakenly written “for bank purposes”
    • Your job details do not match on your ITR or Application Form
    • No company details in the header such as address, email address and contact number
    • Other discrepancies
  9. They can list you as persona non grata

    It’s time for you to review your online statements about the Japanese Government of to Japanese People. Make sure you demote them online. This can happen in every country you are applying.

  10. You travel to Japan with a wrong spelled name on your visa

    You should check this carefully before leaving the agency.

  11. Applying few days before departure

    This is strongly not recommended although some people can get this after three days, there are cases the embassy spends more time on checking your documents. They actually don’t know when are you going to fly to Japan unless you specify it in your application or you included an explanation letter in your documents. Note that the average processing time is 2 to 4 days and this varies in every agency.

  12. They won’t call you for errors and follow ups

    Some got their visa denied because they stapled their photo in the application form, submitted it with unreadable handwritings and details were incomplete.

    Note that they only phone you up if there are questions need to clarify that is not in the application form. Questions such as “What did you do in Russia?”

I’m sure there’s more than these. We’ll keep them coming and update this post immediately. Feel free to share your experience with us and help our kababayans get a tourist visa to Japan successfully.

About Author

Mark Joseph Diamzon

Mark Joseph Diamzon

Mark is a digital marketing consultant currently living in Vietnam. He is a passionate traveler and realizes many lessons after the trip. He traveled to 23 countries and counting and loved to share his travel experiences.