questions & answers: using the japan rail pass

visa help

Visa help

I was supposed to study abroad in Japan when the tsunami hit, so I didn't end up going. But I still have my student visa in my passport, and I just realized that it expires in 2016. I'm going to Japan this summer and want to get a rail pass, which you can only get on a tourist visa.
Does anyone know if I can still get a tourist visa with the student visa still in my passport? If not, can I tear off the student visa? Will that raise red flags going through customs if I have residue of what was once a visa in my passport?
If anyone could let me know, I'd really appreciate it. I'm planning to travel the length of Japan, and it would be way to much without a rail pass.


Hi there,

We sometimes get very interesting question on the forum and this one is expectational!
I am not completely sure about your current visa because a period of roughly 5 years sounds rather long for a student visa. You may just be giving a tourist visa the moment that you enter Japan, if you request one but I think it would be saver to make sure of this.

You can contact Japanese Immigration here and ask them what the best course of action is.

Alternatively you can request a new passport from your government but never remove any Visa pages, it will invalidate the document and may cause big problems.

Hope this helps,


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