Working Holiday Visa for Canadian Citizens

For the purpose of promoting greater mutual understanding between Japan and Canada, the governments of these two countries have agreed to start a Working-Holiday scheme to help encourage the exchange of young people. The scheme will make it possible for citizens of one country to enter the other primarily for a holiday over an extended period, and also to engage in employment as an incidental aspect of their trip in order to supplement their travel funds.

This programme is not designed for persons who mainly intend to work. The applicants’ primary purpose of stay should be “holiday" in Japan.   The applicants who intend to work primarily cannot apply for this visa.    Working Holiday participants are strictly prohibited from working at places affecting public morals such as bars, cabarets, nightclubs and etc.

Please apply for this visa after understanding the purpose of this programme.

Beginning March 1, 1986, on a reciprocal basis, the Government of Japan will issue, free of charge, a single entry visa for the Working-Holiday to a person who satisfies each of the following requirements (effective January 1, 1997).

Our jurisdiction is the Province of Ontario. You may apply for a visa at this Consulate if you live, work, or attend school in Ontario.        If you are not located within our jurisdiction, please contact the Japanese Consulate or Embassy that handles visas for your area. 

We may decline visa applications from areas outside our jurisdiction.

Japan Association for Working Holiday Makers  

Prerequisites for Working Holiday Visa applicants

Applicants for the Working Holiday Visa:

  1. must be a Canadian citizen currently residing in Canada;
  2. must intend primarily to holiday in Japan for a specific length of time;
  3. must be between 18 and 30 years of age at the time of application;
  4. must possess a valid Canadian passport;
  5. must possess reasonable funds for their maintenance, including medical expenses, during the period of their initial stay in Japan;
  6. must be in good health and not have a criminal record;
  7. have never obtained the Working-Holiday visa before.


Procedure for applying for a Working Holiday Visa

Applicants for the Working Holiday Visa are required to submit the following:

      1.Valid Canadian passport
      2.Completed visa application form (You will be exempt from filling in the “Guarantor or Reference in Japan”,  
           as well as “Inviter in Japan” information, unless you have a plan to stay in a specific place in Japan.)
      3.One photo (Approx. 45mm x 45mm, taken within the last 6 months)
      4.Personal resume/curriculum vitae
      5.Detailed itinerary of your stay in Japan (Form)
      6.Letter explaining your reason for applying for a Working Holiday Visa
      7.Note from a physician stating that you are in good health (Original note)
      8.Canadian dollar minimum amount $3,500 ($4,500 for a married couple) in a bank statement providing proof   
           of that amount.
      9.Airline ticket or flight itinerary to Japan. Add an additional $1000 to the above amount if you are unable to
           provide your itinerary or ticket.

The applicant must apply for a visa in person. Applications submitted by agents or group will not be accepted. Application must be made at least three weeks before the anticipated departure date. Applications submitted on short notice will not be accepted.


When you come to pick up your validated passport, you must bring the following:

1) actual round trip airline ticket between North America and Japan;

2) minimum $2,500 ($3,500 for married couple) in a BANK ACCOUNT STATEMENT with your name.


Processing time of visa application:

* Minimum one week.

Application must be made at least three weeks before the anticipated departure date. Applications submitted on short notice will not be accepted.


Other Information
Life and Health Insurance

It is recommended that insurance coverage should be arranged before leaving Canada as under the conditions of employment for the Working Holiday Visa. The period of employment is usually not long enough to qualify for coverage undertaken by the employers or companies.

Validity of the Visa

Applicants may enter Japan within twelve months after the date of issue of the visa; the visa is valid for twelve months.

Period of Stay

A period of stay of up to six months can be initially granted at the port of entry. This may be extended up to another six months by the Immigration Authorities in Japan.

Re-entry Permits

Working Holiday visas are single entry. Therefore, if Working Holiday participants have to leave Japan for any reason and wish to return, it is essential that they obtain a re-entry permit from the Immigration Authorities before leaving Japan.

Residence Card

Working Holiday visitors will be issued a residence card at the port of entry. Please visit a local municipal office in Japan with your residence card within 14 days of finding a place to reside.

Tax Implications

You should ask for a statement of earnings in English while in Japan and call Revenue Canada for the appropriate information when you return to Canada.