Home >  International Cooperation > For Long-Term Visitors / Employees

For Long-Term Visitors / Employees

Before You Come

If your stay in Japan is for 90 days or longer, or it involves income-generating activities, you must obtain a work/long-term visa that is most appropriate for your intended activities in Japan (e.g., "professor," "cultural activities," etc.). The first step to apply for this visa is to obtain a certificate of eligibility (COE) from Japan's Immigration Bureau. This process is taken care of by ISSP. Please contact your host professor and send necessary documentation, including a copy of your passport, your face photo, and the latest CV. In addition, please inform your phone number and postal mailing address where the we can send the certificate to you.

If you would like your family to accompany you in Japan, your family needs to obtain dependents' status of residence. An original copy of the marriage certificate for a spouse and an original copy of the birth certificate for a child will be required for the certificate of eligibility application.

COEs are normally issued within four to six weeks of the application. From the date of the issuance, the certificate is valid for three months, which means that you must enter Japan by the end of its validity period. After you receive a COE from ISSP, please apply for a visa at a local Japanese Embassy or Consulate General. For more information, visit the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan.

To learn about housing choices near ISSP, please see: Housing information.

To learn about Japan's taxation system, visit the National Tax Agency's website. You may also wish to see the "Tax" section of the Handbook of Kashiwa Campus Life (pages 62-65). If you are a non-resident of Japan for tax purposes, an income tax of 20.42% is normally applied to your gross salary in Japan. You may claim an exemption from this income tax if your country of residence has entered into a bilateral tax treaty with Japan. To do so, an "Application Form for Income Tax Convention" must be submitted. If you wish to claim this exemption, please contact your host professor/laboratory well in advance of your arrival.

Japan has a universal social security system in place. This means that you are required to join and be covered by Japanese social security insurance programs (health insurance, pension, etc.). To learn about the types of such social security programs and their details, see the"Social Security" section (pages 44-60). For an insured individual, 70% of medical and dental costs, including prescription drug ones, is covered by insurance, and the remaining 30% is charged to the patient.

If your pension premium payment period is 6 months or longer, you can claim the refund of the pension premiums paid in Japan, after your departure from the country. For more details about this, please check the website of the Japan Pension Service(JPS). Please note that if the pension contribution period in Japan is shorter than 6 months, the premiums you already contributed are unfortunately non-refundable.

To avoid double social security contributions, "Social Security Agreements(SSAs)" are in effect between Japan and certain countries*. If your country of residence has signed an SSA with Japan, you may be exempt from paying the premium by submitting "Certificate of Coverage." If you wish to apply for the exemption under the SSA, please contact your host professor/laboratory well in advance. To learn more about the SSA, please check the JPS website.

Germany, UK, South Korea, USA, Belgium, France, Canada, Australia, Netherlands, Czech Republic, Spain, Ireland, Brazil, Switzerland, Hungary, India, Luxembourg, Philippines, Slovak Republic, China (as of Oct. 2019)

Monthly salaries are paid on the 17th of every month directly into your bank account in Japan. Your first pay day differs depending on your start date: If your employment starts on the 1st of a month, your salary will be paid on the 17th of that month. If the start date is 2nd or later of a month, the first pay day will be the 17th of the next month. It is highly recommended, therefore, to prepare sufficient money to cover initial living costs, a rough estimate of 100,000 yen. As cash is arguably the most common payment method in Japan, you may want to exchange your cash or travelers checks into Japanese yen at the bank counter in an international airport before arriving at ISSP. You can also withdraw yen with your credit or debit cards at ATMs in SEVEN Bank and Japan Post Bank branches (they are located near ISSP), as well as ATMs in certain other banks and convenience stores. Before leaving for Japan, please make sure that your credit/debit cards can be used in Japan.

For the directions to ISSP / Kashiwa Campus, please see here.

After You Arrive

If you receive a Residence Card at the port of entry (i.e., the airport you first landed in Japan), your residence in Japan needs to be registered in the local municipal office within 14 days after moving in to the new place. The registered address will be written on the back side of your Residence Card. At the municipal office, the procedures for your 〝My Number〞 (Japan's social security and tax numbering system) will also be conducted. The notification of your My Number will be sent to your housing on a later date. Once you receive the notification, please tell the number to your group secretary. Your My Number will remain the same in your lifetime; therefore please keep the notification card with you for possible future use, even after you leave Japan.

For more information, see here .

All residents in Japan, regardless their nationality, are required to enroll in a health insurance program and a pension plan in Japan.


If you are a full-time employee of ISSP, you will be enrolled in the MEXT mutual aid association’s health insurance and pension programs. Please ask your group secretary regarding necessary forms to fill out.

If you are not an ISSP employee, you will be enrolled in the National Health Insurance and Pension programs. The insurance premiums are determined based on your Japanese income in the previous year. Only for the pension plan, you will be exempted from paying the pension contributions for the first year. When you enroll in the pension plan, you can apply for the exemption from pension contribution payment at the same time. Please note that from the second year, you are required to pay your pension contribution and there is no exemption from paying the health care insurance premium.

To receive your salary from ISSP, you need to open a bank account in Japan unless you have one already. To open an account, you must visit the bank in person, because this process cannot be done by proxy. When it comes to the question of which bank you should open an account with, Japan Post Bank is one of our recommendations. They have many branches and ATMs across the country and the requirements for opening an account are less strict than most other banks. Be sure to bring your Residence Card with the registered address written on its back.

While You Are at ISSP

UTokyo Wifi (for the university's students and employees) and eduroam Wifi connections are available across the Kashiwa Campus. In addition, your host labs perhaps use their own wireless routers in their offices. Off campus, you can find free Wifi service at restaurants and convenience stores such as MacDonald's, Starbucks, Seven-Eleven, and FamilyMart, although the number of such locations is relatively limited.

(1) Cafeteria (Right in front of the ISSP building)

Weekdays 11:30-20:00
Saturdays 11:30-13:30
Sundays and holidays Closed

(2) Plaza Ikoi (In addition to offering regular menu items, this cafeteria has a sell-by-weight food bar named 〝Gram Deli.〞)

Drink bar: 11:30-20:00
Gram Deli:11:30-14:30
Noodles and other dishes:11:30-14:00// 17:00-20:00
Drink bar & Gram Deli:11:30-14:00
Sundays and holidays

(3) Co-op Food Shop & Cafe (The food shop sells boxed meals, rice balls, sandwiches, snacks, etc. The cafe offers sandwiches, cakes, and a variety of drinks)

Food Shop Weekdays 10:00-19:00
CafeWeekdays 12:00-17:30
(Weekends & holidays: Closed)

(4) Sushi Restaurant "Hama" (Near the AORI building)

Weekdays 11:30-15:005// 17:00-21:30
(Sundays & Holidays Closed)

Japanese classes for international researchers and students are available on Kashiwa campus. More details are available here.

This on-campus health service center provides medical consultation and treatment, medical check-ups, and other related services. For more information, click here.

On the sixth floor of the ISSP main building is ISSP Library. This institute's own library is a part of the library system of the University of Tokyo, which also includes the Kashiwa Library.

Usful information for your campus life is available on the website of the Kashiwa Internationl Office. Among such useful resources are included the Handbook of Kashiwa Camps Life and the Orientation Guidebook on Kashiwa Campus, The University of Tokyo . Hard copies of these publications are also available in your host laboratory and the International Liaison Office.

Before You Leave

A pre-departure checklist can be downloaded from here: for employees / for visitors

  • Notice to end the tenancy to the International Lodge (or your landlord, as the case may be). For residents of the university's International Lodge, submit a Notification of Departure one month prior to your planned departure. If you live in non-university housing, you also need to contact utilities companies (gas, water, and electricity) to terminate the service.
  • If you are an ISSP employee, submit the 〝Contact Information after Resignation〞 form and other necessary documents, if any, to the administrative office.
  • Close your bank account in Japan, if desired. (Japanese banks usually do not charge account maintenance fees, though).
  • Visit the local municipal office to submit a moving-out notifiation and return your 〝My Number〞 tax and social security ID card. If you are enrolled in the National Health Insurance and Pension Plan, you also need to complete the procedures for withdrawing from the Plan, too.
  • (If appliacble) Call the credit card company (03-6627-4137) to cancel your Tuo Credit Card, and then rerun your Tuo-Card to the Co-op academic shop on campus to receive a refund of your membership fee.
  • (If desired) Visit the local post office to submit the relocation form and thereby request the fowarding service .
  • (If appliacble) Return library books and other borrowed items, if any.
  • (If applicable)Return your Library Card, Guest Card/University Staff Card, Kyosai Card (heath insurance card), and your office key.