Who is eligible for a JAPAN RAIL PASS?

1. You are a foreign tourist visiting Japan from abroad for sight-seeing,under the entry status of "temporary visitor."

"Temporary Visitor" entry status, according to Japanese Immigration Law, allows a stay in Japan of 15 days or 90 days for "sight-seeing, etc." If you apply for a "stay for sight-seeing" when you enter Japan, entry personnel will stamp your passport as "Temporary Visitor," as shown below. Only persons who have a passport bearing this stamp can use a JAPAN RAIL PASS.

Even if you visit Japan with an Exchange Order, to be turned in for a JAPAN RAIL PASS, the exchange cannot be made unless you have "Temporary Visitor" status; if you enter Japan under any other official status, such as "Trainee," "Entertainer," or "Reentry Permit," you cannot change the Exchange Order for a JAPAN RAIL PASS. Please note that according to strict interpretation of the Japanese Immigration Law, "Temporary Visitor" status differs even from other types of stays that are also for only short time periods.

Examples of the Temporary Visitor entrystatus stamp
Examples of the "Temporary Visitor" entrystatus stamp

2. You are a Japanese national living in a foreigncountry,

a. who is qualified to live permanently in that country, or
b. who is married to a non-Japanese residing in a country other than Japan.

Note: Persons meeting conditions a or b above must be required to show proof of same at the point of purchase of an Exchange Order and obtaining a JAPAN RAIL PASS. Also note: The former condition about a Japanese national "who has been living in a foreign country for ten or more years" is discontinued from 1 April 2004 purchase.

How to obtain a JAPAN RAIL PASS

A JAPAN RAIL PASS cannot be purchased inside Japan.
You must purchase an Exchange Order from an authorized sales office or agent before you come to Japan.