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Japan Reopening to Canadian Travellers: What You Need to Know

Information may change on a day-by-day basis. While we make every effort to keep the information here updated, the responsibility to keep abreast of ever-changing travel restrictions is ultimately your own.

The COVID-19 Statistics tracker is updated in real time.

2022 is shaping up to be the year of revenge travel, and we’re now moving incredibly fast in this new world of “basically every country is open”.

Following exciting reopenings by other countries in the region, Japan marks the latest country in Asia to open their borders to some Canadian travellers without quarantine. 

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Japan Travel Restrictions

Many fully vaccinated foreign travellers are welcome to travel to Japan, with minimal testing requirements and little to no quarantine.

Shibuya Crossing, Tokyo

How Can Canadians Enter Japan?

Since March 2022, Canadians have been allowed to enter Japan by air, most likely through the national capital of Tokyo. As of October 2021, when departing Canada by air, travellers are required to present proof of vaccination.

Travellers coming from Canada must present the following:

Lastly, don’t forget to present documents showing that you’re either an international student or a business traveller in order to be allowed entry into the country.

Eligible Canadian travellers may submit their visa applications at the general consulates of Japan in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, or Montreal. Visa applications take 3–5 business days to process. 

We’ll be sure to update this section once Japan opens their borders to Canadians for the purposes of tourism as well. 

Current Health Requirements in Japan

Ah, will the good news ever end? 

March 18, 2022 marked the date that Japan’s state of emergency was lifted in all 18 remaining prefectures, meaning that COVID cases have dropped sufficiently low enough that life can return to semi-normal.

Restaurants are fully open once again, as are movie theatres, museums, cultural events, and generally any other tourist attractions. In fact, this is the first time since October 2021 that are no gathering or business hour restrictions on restaurants and bars in Japan.

Mutekiya
Mutekiya ramen house, Tokyo

Interestingly enough, there are no vaccination requirements for any of the above, nor will there be any vaccination checks. While everyone departing from Canada will be fully vaccinated anyway, this does reduce the hassle of going about everyday activities.

There are still some minor restrictions in place, such as “non-certified restaurants” only being able to seat up to four people per table, but that shouldn’t have a big impact on your trip.

Masks are required in all indoor spaces as well as all outdoors where you “may encounter other people”, which basically means they’re required all the time. Despite our gradually relaxing COVID-19 restrictions at home, don’t forget to maximize your baggage allowance with sufficient face masks.

The Ritz-Carlton, Kyoto

How to Get to Japan

To East Asia, Aeroplan naturally comes to mind with its fantastic rate of 75,000 points one-way in business class, as long as the overall routing falls at or under 7,500 miles in distance flown — which includes all direct flights from North America.

West Coast residents in particular will benefit from Aeroplan’s fantastic sweet spot of only 55,000 points one-way for a direct flight from Vancouver or Calgary to Tokyo.

Air Canada flights can still be priced exorbitantly under dynamic pricing, so using your eUpgrades with the “Latitude Attitude” strategy is the optimal way to upgrade into a business class seat. 

For those who dabble in the US credit card game, you can book a one-way trip in ANA First Class for just 55,000 Virgin Atlantic miles from the West Coast and 60,000 Virgin Atlantic miles from the East Coast.

This is arguably the best sweet spot that currently exists out there, and there’s nothing quite like bottomless Hibiki 21 whiskey and Japanese fine dining in the sky to celebrate Japan’s long-awaited reopening.

With Alaska Mileage Plan, you can also fly direct on on Japan Airlines for 60,000 miles in business class and 70,000 miles in First Class, another excellent sweet spot to aim for on your first academic or commercial visit to Japan in the post-pandemic era. 

Conclusion

After what feels like an eternity of being closed off to the world, Japan welcomes you!

Have your proof of vaccination, negative test, and various forms and statements ready to present for entry in to Japan – along with all your foreign student or business traveller documentation.

Of course, we’ll be certain to update this article once Japan announces a full reopening to Canadian travellers, including short-term visits for the purpose of tourism. Here’s hoping that won’t be long from now!

 

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