Memo-migrated‎ > ‎

My notes abotu the procedure to work in Japan

posted Sep 1, 2019, 5:29 PM by Teng-Yok Lee   [ updated Jan 2, 2021, 7:23 PM ]


在留(ざいりゅう)カード: Resident card
転入届(てんにゅうとどけ): Move-in registration
健康保険(けんこうほけん): Health insurance
銀行口座(ぎんこうこうざ): Bank account
自己負担(じこふたん): self-pay
補助(ほじょ): Support


First, a COE (certificate of eligibility) is needed from the employer.

Once the COE is received, apply the Japan working visa in the local embassy. Note:
  • Different embassy might have different requirements of documents. e.g.
  • A legal immigration status in US is typically needed .
  • The arrival time/date can be flexible.
  • The working visa is for 1-time entry. Later will use 在留カード to enter Japan.
  • The visa requires 3 working day to obtain.


The shipper might need to know the following information.
  • Need to check with the employer about the detailed upper limits (e.g. how big for the oversea shipment and how heavy for the air cargo).
  • Need to know whether I should pay first or directly bill to the employer.
The shipper will provide two customer declaration forms, which should list the number of boxes for flights and ships. On the airport.
  • Hand in the 2 completed sheet to the custom officer to get the stamp.
  • One will be returned with the stamp.
  • This returned one should be brought to the shipper's counter at the arrival lobby of the airport.


While the employer should reimburse this, the rules for the source and destination are more restricted. For instance, originally I want to fly to Taiwan first and enter Japan one week later, which is actually way cheaper than directly flying to Japan, but my Japanese colleagues worry that the accounting department might reject because of the 1-week gap. Thus at the end I decide to enter Japan first, settle down everything, and then go to Taiwan.


在留カード is crucial for foreigners to stay in Japan. Without 在留カード, it might be not possible to create bank account and apply for phones.
在留カード can be  obtain in some international airports. Once the address in Japan is confirmed, go to the local government to register (転入届)and add the address to the back of 在留カード.


In my case, my employer rents an apartment for me so the entire procedure is simpler.

On the other hand, one thing I learned during the process is that the employee should provide a concrete plan, including the date, rent range, and size range. The date should be a single choice for the HR to search. At the beginning I provided two possible dates to the HR. According to my Japanese colleague, it is better that I can reduce the date to a single & confirmed one so it is easier for HR to search.


  • 健康保険/Health insurance: Can purchase from the local government, but employers might have their own plan.
  • 銀行口座/Bank account: Most banks would have rules for foreigner. Meanwhile, employers might have their preferred bank to deposit the salary.
  • 携帯: TO ADD