All about J-Find and J-Skip Visas for Japan

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As of spring 2023, the Japanese government has introduced two new visa programs for foreign nationals, the Future Creation Individual (J-Find) and Highly Skilled Professional (J-Skip) visas. Both J-Find and J-Skip visas are work-related visas created to make it easier for skilled individuals from abroad to live and work in Japan.

Who is eligible, and what are the requirements for the J-Find and J-Skip visas? What are the benefits and how can you apply? Let’s explore the answers to these questions and more!

Note: While Go Go Nihon offers visa application support for students applying to our language school partners, we cannot help with direct application support for the J-Find and J-Skip visas. However, our staff can help if J-Find visa holders want to study at one of our partner language schools while looking for work.

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What is the J-Find visa and who is it for?

The J-Find is specified as a job seeker visa, to encourage soon-to-be graduating or newly graduated students from the top 100 universities in the world (reported by world university rankings) to find work in Japan, start a business, and other designated activities for up to two years.

Eligibility & Requirements

Besides being from a top 100 university, applicants should meet a few other conditions for a J-Find visa. According to the Yokohama legal service office, other minimum requirements for a J-Find visa include:

  • Five (5) years have not passed since graduating from university.
  • Have a savings account with a balance of at least 200,000 yen (approx. 1,460 US dollars).

Engaged in activities related to job hunting or preparation for starting a business in Japan.

J-Find Visa – What are the benefits?

The J-Find visa has a few significant advantages, the largest being that no job offer or Japanese sponsor is needed before arriving in Japan. There is the ability to change jobs more easily and start a business.  Another added benefit is the possibility of bringing family with you.

What is the J-Skip visa and who is it for?

The J-Skip program is a work visa made to bring three types of highly skilled foreign employees and high-income earners to Japan to work and offer them a fast track to permanent residency in the country. Based on information from the Immigration Services Agency of Japan (ISA) The three types of work activities include:

(A) Advanced Academic Research Activities (Professors, researchers, etc.)

(B) Advanced Technical Activities (Engineers working in companies, involved in creating a new product with a company, international lawyers, etc.)

(C) Advanced Business/Management Activities (Corporate executives, etc.)If you are unsure if the job offer you have been given falls under one of the above categories, reach out to your local Japanese consulate or embassy and ask for more details about the J-Skip visa activities qualification.

Eligibility & Requirements

Besides needing to be in one of the three categories, there are some basic conditions outlined by the ISA that also need to be met to apply for the J-Skip visa:

  • Have a master’s degree or higher (for type A & B) plus an annual income of more than 20 million yen (approximately US$154,000).
  • Or have more than 10 years of work experience plus an annual income of more than 20 million yen.
  • Business owners (type C above), will need more than five years of work experience and an annual income of more than 40 million yen (approximately US$308,000).

While the income and education requirements may seem strict for the J-Skip visa, some unique benefits outweigh the challenges.

J-Skip visa – What are the benefits?

If one of your goals for getting the visa is to stay in Japan for the long haul, you’re in luck! A list of benefits made by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan (MOFA) states that applicants accepted into the J-Skip program are granted a period of stay of 5 years, with the option to apply for permanent residence after one year.

There is also the benefit of bringing your family with you, including your parents in some conditions, and for your spouse to work in Japan as well. Other benefits include no Highly Skilled Professional point system like other similar visas in Japan and priority lanes at the immigration checkpoint of large airports.

Person searching about the J-find and J-Skip visas on their phone.

How to apply for the J-Find and J-Skip visas?

If you are considering following either of the new immigration pathways, you will need to gather important documents, along with meeting the criteria mentioned above.

Certificate of Eligibility

In almost all cases, the first step for the J-Skip visa application, after receiving a job offer is to get a Certificate of Eligibility (COE). For work visas, you and your new employer will apply for and get this through the immigration office in Japan.

For the J-Find visa application, the situation is a bit more complicated as highlighted by the Yokohama legal service office, because J-Find is a job-seeker visa it’s difficult to already have a COE sponsor before arriving and finding a job in Japan. However, you can apply directly for a J-Find visa without a COE at your local Japanese embassy or consulate.

Other visa application documents include 

While Go! Go! Nihon strives to give an overview and the best up-to-date information, it’s important to note that requirements may vary slightly from country to country.

How to prepare for life in Japan on the J-Find and J-Skip visas?

Before arriving in Japan or applying for either of the J-Find and J-Skip visas, you should consider a few things, such as learning the language to start your new life with fewer restrictions.

Take an online language course

Before moving to a new country for work or studying, getting the basics of the language down is always a good idea. Whether you have to make a doctor’s appointment or want to ask about ingredients on the menu at a restaurant, getting a grasp on Japanese will help you settle in quicker and make friends with the locals. Go! Go Nihon has partnered with Akamonkai Japanese Language School to create a 12-week online Japanese course to help get beginners ready for traveling or living in Japan! Even if you’re not a complete beginner, Go! Go! Nihon has several different online classes to fit your needs before arriving in Japan on the J-Find and J-Skip visas.

Check out all of our online Japanese courses here.

Learn more about life in Japan

Besides the J-Find and J-Skip visas, there is so much to learn about life in Japan from culture, history, and the best places to travel, check out the Go! Go! Nihon blog for more information and insider secrets to making the most out of your time in Japan!

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