All foreigners need a passport, valid at least for the intended time of stay in Japan.
Travelers must carry their passports at all times while in Japan. If caught without a passport, they can be detained and they may be required to pay a fine of up to ¥200,000.
Visas to Japan
Visa requirements for travelers to Japan have been waived for 63 countries.
Travelers from the following countries may be granted stay of up to 6 months without a visa:
Austria, Germany, Ireland, Liechtenstein, Mexico, Switzerland and United Kingdom.
Visas are waived for up to 3 months stay for citizens of:
Argentina, Bahamas, Belgium, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Finland, France, Greece, Guatemala, Honduras, Iceland, Israel, Italy, Lesotho, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Malta, Mauritius, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, San Marino, Singapore,
Slovenia, Spain, Suriname, Sweden, Tunisia, Turkey and Uruguay.
For all above countries, the initial waiver is for up to 90 days only. Travelers should apply for the extension of their stay at an immigration authority in Japan.
A 90 day permit is granted for the following countries:
Andorra, Australia, Barbados, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hong Kong, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Macau, Monaco, New Zealand, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, South Korea, Taiwan and United States.
Citizens of Brunei are allowed for a 14 day stay without a visa
Security and other restrictions
Upon entry all travelers are photographed and their (electronic) fingerprints are taken. They also have to go through a process of short interview with the immigration official to explain the purpose of the visit.
Travelers should be particularly aware that many prescription drugs as well as over-the-counter medications are prohibited in Japan (including medicines that contain Pseudoephedrine or Codeine). Also, up to one month's supply of allowable prescription drugs can be brought into Japan, provided they are accompanied by the original prescription and the letter from the doctor.
Travelers who need to carry larger supply of drugs or are unsure if the drug they take is allowed should consult a Japanese embassy for details. The ones caught on bringing prohibited drugs can face deportation and/or jail.