If you guys are following me on Instagram, you’d probably know that I went to Japan a while back in February to March, but I never talked about it on the blog. I can’t really say why, nonetheless, it was still a fun trip (it’s Japan, duh!), and an eye-opening experience. I learned a lot about Japan and its culture, pretty much way different from what we have here in Indonesia. And as I’m typing this right now, I’m at the airport, waiting for my flight. YES, I’m going to go back to Japan for a short trip and this time, I’ll make sure I record and write everything down for you guys! Now let me start with :
How to Apply Japan Visa in Surabaya
This upcoming trip is quite a surprise trip for me. I just knew that I’m going to go to Japan last Sunday (28/8/2016), and I was told that I’m going to go to Japan on September 8th! With that said, I actually only have around 10 days left, and first thing first, as an Indonesian, if you want to go to Japan, you have to have a VISA. BUT, the ONE and ONLY thing that I’m concerned about with applying VISA was the amount of money in my bank account. 🙁 #kere
Actually, for Indonesian, you can enter Japan with a waiver VISA (totally FREE & doesn’t need any documents) IF you have an E-Passport, but mine is still the regular passport. I was actually about to exchange my old passport for an E-Passport since you don’t necessarily need to submit your bank account with an E-Passport. But indeed, to make an E-Passport, it’s more expensive than making a VISA. To make a new E-Passport you have to pay around IDR 650.000, whereas to apply VISA for Japan, you only need IDR 330.000. BUT AGAIN, with one time making an E-Passport, you can enter Japan for FREE in the next five years (if they don’t change the regulation).
OKAY! Long story short, I tried to find out and gather information from the internet about how to make an E-Passport in Surabaya. Then, I reckon from the most recent comment on this particular blog that discussed making E-Passport in Surabaya, that the server at the office was down (20/08/2016), and the consequence was, it’s delaying the E-Passport making process up to three weeks, while my trip is next week. meh. So, I gave up trying to make an E-Passport, I went down for making a VISA instead. Have no choice, got to do it.
So here’s what you need to apply Japan VISA (Temporary Visit, Single Entry) :
Original, not copied version.
A Visa Application Formfrom the embassy that you need to fill in plus
A Photo of You.
Download the Visa Application Form Here
The photo size is 4,5cm x 4,5cm. Has to be new (6 months old maximum). White background, no smiling with your teeth. I suggest you to just go to a photo studio that has the service to make a passport or visa photo. That would be much easier, and it only cost for IDR 35.000.
TIPS : Write down on the form that the purpose of your trip is for a vacation, it would be much easier than business trip.
A Copy of Your ID
One copyon a A4 paper, don’t cut it
A copy of your Family Card / Family Register (Kartu Keluarga)
NOTE : The data on your Passport, ID and in your Family Card has to be IDENTICAL. If you have any single difference, for example : name difference (even just a single letter), or birth date or birth place, I suggest you to fix it first before you submit, I’m afraid it will get rejected.
A Copy of your Student Card (If you're still studying)
Or a copy of your work ID card if you’re an employee
A copy of your airplane ticket (round trip)
If you don’t have it yet, you may go to a travel company and asked if they can issue of a round trip itinerary plane ticket for you, to help with the visa application. That’s what I did with the help of a friend who’s at the time was working as a travel agent. I know a true traveler would help a fellow to travel as well!
TIPS: Make the length of your trip sooner than it actually is. If your real plan was to go for 11 days, just make the ticket to be only for three days like I did. It worked wonders.
An Itinerary Form
You don’t need to write down a long diary of your trip, you just have to write the dates, and add some touristy places in Tokyo, and also the name of the hotel that you booked, my hotel booking itinerary was issued by booking.com, they didn’t charge for it and you can cancel anytime.
A Copy of The First Page of Your Bank Account Book
The part where you have your name and your sign on it
A Copy of Three Months Transaction in Your Bank Account
Mine is from BCA and I printed it from klikbca (which you can actually fake as well), not from the teller. I borrowed my friend’s money to put it in my bank account one day before I applied for my VISA, and I only have less than IDR 10 million at the moment. So the total amount after I borrowed my friend’s money was almost 20 million when I submitted it. Hiks.. My money runs out fast after I bought this laptop. 🙁
OPTIONAL! If you want to make your visa application appears stronger and more reliable, you can also submit :
A reference letter from your bank
This is actually not necessary, but I submitted it anyways. Usually, if the embassy officer finds that you are submitting something unnecessary, they will give it back to you, but they let me submit this reference letter, so I know that this one would help me to get my VISA. This letter will let them know that you are a legit customer of that bank who has been having an account there for a certain period of time, that you wanted to make a visa, and that you have a certain amount of money in your bank account. You can choose to state the exact amount of money that you have in your bank account or not, I started mine. And oh, it cost me IDR 50.000 to get this letter.
A reference letter from your workplace.
This is also actually not necessary (only necessary if you’re traveling to Japan for a business trip, with your company sponsoring you), and I didn’t submit it, since I’m not working at any company anymore. BUT if you attach this letter, I’m sure they will also accept it. I attached this letter on my first trip to Japan, while I was still working at IDNtimes.com. This letter will let them know that you are a legit employee of that company, you’re working as a what, you have been working for how long, and how much is your monthly salary. It also says that you are having a vacation leave from when to when, that you are going to pay for it with your own funds and that you are going to go back to Indonesia to continue your work at that company, an additional sentence begging them to grant your visa would be great too, lol. You need to have a header of your company letter, and also a stamp of the company, and your boss or your HR signature.
A copy of your printed hotel booking
Again, with the unnecessary things, I submitted and they accepted it anyway. I faked this one with the help of a site called booking.com, where you can book any hotel room that you want, and you can cancel the booking for free afterward. but you need to have a credit card for this one, you can borrow anyone’s if you want.
So. I prepare ALL of these that I stated above, in only LESS than 12 hours. On Sunday night, I begged my friend to lend me their money and promised them that they will get it back in less than 24 hours. This is not something I would normally ask, but since this trip is driving me nuts because of the very sudden notice, I had to have thick skin and asked them for help (I kinda hated myself for doing that).
Then I asked my friend who worked at a travel company to help me with the airplane ticket, after that, I booked a random hotel room in Tokyo at booking.com, I also fill in the registration form plus the itinerary, as well as copied my three months bank transaction from klikbca, and lastly, I prepared my passport, my ID card, and my Family Card too, I put it all on an envelope so that I won’t forget to bring it the next day.
The next morning, around 8.30 AM, I rushed to the bank to make the reference letter, then around 9 AM, I went to the photo studio to have my picture taken, I kinda threatened the guy at the studio to finish the picture and printed it fast because I had to arrive at the embassy BEFORE 11.30, thankfully he agreed to finish around 10.30 AM, and while waiting for the picture, I went out to a printing station to copy my ID, my bank book, my family card, and get my registration form, itinerary and my three months bank transaction printed. All that only cost me IDR 5.000 ish. After I got the reference letter from BCA, I immediately transfer back the money that I lend from my friends.
I went back to the studio to get my picture done just in time at 10.30 AM. It cost me IDR 35.000 for it, then I drove to the embassy and arrived around 11 AM-ish. The embassy opens from Monday to Friday (except on the national holiday and the embassy holiday as well). If you want to submit your VISA application, they are open from 08.15 AM to 11.30 AM
After that, you’ll walk through the screening room where you won’t get screened, lol. You just walked through it. then wait for the security to open the door automatically for you, and you can go to the VISA room.
After entering the VISA room, you’ll see this little machine that will give you your line number. You have to push the button so that the number will come out on printed paper. Then you just have to wait until your name is called by the officer.
In my case, after my name got called. I went to this little counter where I got to meet the officer on the other side, I gave him all the forms and he checked them. The interesting thing here was that he told me I had no sufficient funds (he didn’t check my three months transaction at all, he only check the last page of it where it stated the total amount of money in my bank account). I asked him :
Me : “How much money do I need more to make it sufficient?
Him : “Just add more”
Me : in my head, I was like ‘what the hell?’
Me : “How much? One million? Two Million?”
Him : “Double it”
Me : in my head, I was like ‘what the ef? almost 40 million??? I could’ve just gone to Australia or wherever further with that cash, dumbass!’
Me : “Sir, I’m only going there for three days, do I really need that much money in my bank account? I won’t even spend that much”
Him : “I’m just afraid that your application won’t get through. Okay, just add five more million”
Me : “Okay”
This was where I made my mistakes :
I should've just fought harder to get the application went through.Because I actually knew that even with that less money, I would still get the VISA. I remember my friend only submitted 12 million in her bank account, she even went to Japan for 11 days, and she got the VISA! I didn’t know why I didn’t fight hard enough. Maybe I was just too afraid that my application wouldn’t get through, so I just said yes to everything he said. Or AT LEAST
I should've made him accept the rest of my application,and I will submit the updated bank transaction a little later after lunchtime. And
I should've also arrived at the embassy around 10 AM,so if there’s any minor error like this, I could fix it fast nearby and go back there to re-submit the application.
Yeah. those were my mistakes, and I had to go back to the embassy the next day because of it. Daym.
So, how do you think I add five million more to my bank account? Whereas I already wired my friend’s money back to their account, and there was no way for me to beg them again to lend me the money one more time. I Photoshopped it. HAHAHA. I opened my laptop, I made another transaction that gave me IDR 5 million more that day in my bank account, I calculated everything and the last total number was IDR 20 million-ish. Then I went to the printing station, and I printed it out, DONE.
The next day, I went back there to re-submit the application. This time, the officer was a lady, and the process of submitting my application went very smoothly. Oh God, why didn’t she show up yesterday?? She gave me a paper that said that I had submitted the application on August 30th, and I can get my passport with the VISA (hopefully) on September 2nd. It was literally only 3 days! So fast!
I honestly didn’t think that my VISA would be granted since I made up almost everything important there. But I still prayed for it, and just hoped for the best. Your girl just wants to travel and see the world man, let her go!
Three days later, I went back to the embassy, I drove with my heart beating so fast and my hands were constantly dripping. To get the VISA, the opening hours are different from the submitting hours, it’s from 01.15 PM to 03.30 PM. I arrived there around 3 PM, I brought the money for the VISA which cost IDR 330.000, and I couldn’t make a single smile on my face, I didn’t talk much either with the security, since I already knew what to do. That’s how nervous I was at that time.
But long story short, they granted my VISA! And I couldn’t be happier for it! WOOOHOOOOO! Japan I’m coming back!!
This made me realize how easy it actually to get a Japan VISA and that’s why I decided to write on the blog. To recap, the total amount that you actually need to have Japan Visa :
Copy and Printed Documents : 5.000
Photo : 35.000
Visa : 330.000 +
Saving in Bank Account :
around 15 to 20 million
Reference Letter from Local Bank :
I really hope all the tricks that I did could also help you to get your VISA! If there’s anything that you want to know or ask regarding this, you can comment down below or email me at email@example.com, I would be more than happy to help (if I could). But actually, everything that I knew, I already wrote it down in here, so make sure you read everything through first before you ask me, kay?
Thank you so much for reading, and please share this to your friends who wants to go to Japan. Who knows it might help them too! 🙂
- Japan Embassy Surabaya
- Tel : +62-31-5030008
- Monday to Friday (except for national holiday and the embassy holiday)
- Submission of Application for Visa : 08:15 AM – 11:30 AM
- Taking Passport : 01:15 PM – 3:30 PM
- Email : firstname.lastname@example.org