FAQs About Japan


Q: Will I get a dedicated counselor for the entire application and visa process?
A: Yes. Once you sign up with Focus Education, you will be assigned a dedicated counselor who will guide you through the entire process.

Q: Does Focus Education have any special relationship with Japanese institutions?
A: Yes. Focus Education has relationships with a number of Japanese institutions, giving you the benefit of improved turnaround times for application processing and assessment.

Q: Can I apply for an NAT- Test/JLPT through Focus Education?
A: Yes. Focus Education facilitates NAT- Test/JLPT applications. Please visit our office.

Q: How will Focus Education help me?
A: Focus Education has been sending students to Japan and other countries for the last 5 years. Focus Education has trained counselors who have got experience and expertise to assist students. We provide you with:

  • Professional counseling and information on various courses and institutions
  • Application Forms – Brochures – Guides etc.
  • Admission Assistance
  • Visa Counseling
  • Travel and accommodation arrangement
  • Procuring Residential Facilities 
  • Student Loan



Q: What kinds of accommodations are there in Japan?
A:Accommodations for foreign students include the following types.


While some schools run dormitories for foreign students, some simply offer assistance in finding private accommodations. If you experience problems in finding accommodations after you arrive in Japan, we suggest that you first consult with those in charge at your school.


There is some public housing that accepts foreign applicants. However, there are restrictions and requirements such as needing a relative to be residing with you or to have resided for a minimum of a prescribed period of time in that prefecture. For details, please consult with the housing section of the prefectural government office and others.


With the cooperation of Japanese firms, the Corporate Friendship Network for Foreign Students has begun accepting foreign students in staff dormitories owned by Japanese firms. Applications are accepted through universities.


Though the renting conditions vary greatly, private accommodations are usually leased through a real estate agency in the chosen area. We suggest that you consult with your school. Please refer below for further details regarding private housing for rent.

Q: What is the average rent for private accommodation in Japan?
A: Before you lease private accommodations, you should check what the usual monthly rent in the area is. In the case of the Tokyo metropolitan area, rent is normally higher the closer the accommodation is to the center of Tokyo and similarly cheaper the further it is from central Tokyo. Other conditions that determine the rent include the distance from the nearest train station, how old the accommodations are, the surrounding neighborhood, the amount of sunshine that that the room gets and the popularity of the area as a residential district. There seem to be many small apartments with a monthly rent of between ¥40,000 – ¥80,000(*). (*)Rental fees in metropolitan areas differ greatly from those in outlying areas.

You can apply follow following steps:


The school office at Japanese universities, special training colleges and Japanese-language institutes often assist enrolled students in finding private accommodations for students in the vicinity of the school. We suggest that you check with your school.


Real estate agencies act as mediators for apartment and condominium rentals. They are usually located close to train stations and often have signs posted outside saying XYZ “Fudosan” or XYZ “Home”. Many have small advertisements listing rental conditions for available accommodations pasted to their glass doors and windows. Schools will sometimes offer assistance in locating a real estate agency so you may want to inquire at your school.

Q: What should I be aware of before I rent an apartment in Japan?
A: i) Leased accommodations such as apartments are normally unfurnished. For example, although there is a kitchen sink, the cooking stove is usually not furnished. You will also need to provide your own lighting, rugs, curtains, and so on.

ii) You will need to pay a total of between 5 to 6 months rent in advance. This includes non-refundable key money, a refundable deposit, the real estate agency’s commission and the first month’s rent. iii) You will also need a Japanese joint guarantor This is a Japanese custom, and Japanese nationals also need a joint guarantor when they lease accommodations.

Q: What is a joint guarantor and why is one needed?
A: A joint guarantor is necessary when you lease accommodations. A real estate agent will almost always say that you need a ‘Japanese’ joint guarantor. The condition for becoming a joint guarantor and the joint guarantor’s liabilities are as follows:


A joint guarantor must be ‘an adult who earns an independent living.’ In other words, it is someone who has an income that supports the household finances.


In the case that a lessee fails to pay his or her rent by the given deadline or causes damage the room and fails to make compensations, the landlord has the right to request payment from the joint guarantor. In other words, the joint guarantor is legally liable to make debt servicing on your behalf. Fathers or other relatives who pay the tuition normally act as the joint guarantor for Japanese students. Therefore, the landlord or real estate agent usually assumes that they can receive payment for unpaid rent by contacting the lessee’s parent. Because joint guarantors become legally liable for you, it may be difficult to find a guarantor if they are people who do not know you very well. We suggest that you ask someone you know very well, for example, your guarantor.

Q: Is there anything I should take care of when I lease accommodations in Japan?
A: Japanese dormitory and apartment leases normally prohibit those other than the lessee to reside in the accommodations. Therefore, problems will arise if you stay at your friend’s accommodations or allow your friends or family to reside in your own accommodations without getting the consent of the landlord or apartment superintendent. Be sure to consult with your landlord in advance. A joint guarantor is necessary when you lease accommodations.


Q: What standards must applicants meet to get accepted?
A: Here’s what you need:

  •     A minimum GPA of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale (for university-sponsored programs).
  •     At least a year’s worth of college-level Japanese (highly recommended), and/or mastery of the hiragana and katakana character sets.
  •     500-word essay on why you want to attend the program.
  •     You must be at least 18, and this is college-level (not high-school level).
  •     You must be at least 18, and this is college-level (not high-school level).

 Once you are accepted and in Japan, you take a placement test to further gauge your command of Japanese. This plus all the info on you we’ve gathered helps us put you into the right level. If you have more questions, please ask us!

Q: When is the time for enrollment?

A: For long-term courses, you will be able to enroll in April, July, October and January. However, depending on your level of Japanese and your goal after graduation, there are also some periods that you may not be able to enroll. For further details please check with us.

For short term courses, visa-holder courses, and private lessons, you can enroll during any time of year based on your schedule.

However if you are joining group classes, please confirm with us ahead whether there’s a course suitable for your level at the time you wish to enroll.

Summer course begins in the middle of July every year

Q: Do I need a passport? What about a visa?

A: Yes; everyone needs a passport to study overseas. But if you are staying for just one term, you may not need a visa. Many countries, including the U.S., have special visa treaties with Japan allowing their citizens to stay in Japan for 90 days without formally applying for a visa. If you stay for two or more terms, you will likely need a visa.

Q: How much Japanese do you recommend taking before attending Japanese School?

A: You will succeed much better in this rigorous program (even at the lower levels) if you have one year of university Japanese under your belt. If you have had no Japanese, or if it is unavailable where you live, you can pick up a good book on Japanese and at least memorize the hiragana and katakana. 

For those who already have a good command of Japanese, you will be likely be placed in a higher level where you can polish your language proficiency.

Q: Are students all Japanese language majors?

A:No. Students come from a variety of backgrounds, majors, colleges or life experiences. Majors have included liberal studies, humanities, and business, among many others. The majority of students who attend our program are not Japanese majors.

Q: Is there an age limit?

A: There is no age limit, however applicants for the Preparatory Course and the Practical Japanese Course should have graduated from their last place of study within the last five years.

However, according to the applicant’s situation, content differs so please consult with us for further information.

Q: How do I apply?

A: For the Preparatory Course and the Practical Japanese Course, please prepare the application documents and submit them within the allocated time. After examining the documents, the school will submit them to the Immigration Bureau.

Q: When can I apply?

A: Depending on your desired entry period and area of residence, the closing date for applications differs.

Q: How long does it take to be issued a study visa?

A: Following submission of the official documents to the Immigration Bureau, it takes approximately two and a half months before the “Certificate of Eligibility” is issued. 

After the “Certificate of Eligibility” has been issued, a visa can be applied for at a Japanese embassy or consulate in the home country. Results are usually announced one month prior to the intended school entrance period.

Q: Are there any fees I am required to pay to Focus Education for my placement into a Japanese Language School in Japan?

A: Yes. Initially, you are required to pay a non-refundable fee of NPR 25,000 as the Certificate of Eligibility (COE) application processing fee. After COE approval from the Japan Immigration bureau, you need to pay NPR 100,000 as placement fee, which is fully refundable in case of visa rejection by the Japan Embassy.


Q: What is the climate like in Japan?

A: Most of Japan has four distinct seasons: a warm spring, a hot and humid summer, a cool autumn, and a cold winter. There is also a short rainy season in June, and typhoons sometimes strike around September.

Q: How many earthquakes has Japan had?

A: Each year countless earthquakes occur in Japan, but most are so small that they can’t be felt. Over the last century, Japan has experienced 23 earthquakes that have caused major damage, one of the biggest being the Great Hanshin Earthquake that occurred in Kobe in 1995. The most devastating earthquake in modern times was the great Tokyo Earthquake of 1923, in which 100,000 died.

Q: How many volcanoes are there in Japan?

A: There are around 200 volcanoes, 60 of which are active.


Q: What is the currency of Japan?

A: The currency of Japan is YEN.

Q: Do I have to take Japanese Yen along with me after I get the visa?

A: Yes. Focus Education suggests taking some Japanese Yen along with you.


Q: Are there any scholarships available?

A: There is a system where students who have excellent attitudes, grades and attendance may be recommended and, if chosen, receive a scholarship.

Only students in who have study visa are eligible for the scholarship system.


Q: What are the requirements to become a permanent resident?

A. For applicants who wish to become a permanent resident, Immigration Control Act stipulates the two requirements: “The alien’s behavior and conduct must be good”; and “The alien must have sufficient assets or ability to make an independent living.” The Act further states “the Minister of Justice may grant permission only when he deems…. that his permanent residence will be in accordance with the interests of Japan.”

Let us first explain the aforementioned two requirements. According to Immigration Control Act, these two requirements “do not have to be fulfilled in the case of spouses or children of Japanese nationals, those who have Permanent Residence status or those who are special permanent residents.” As these aliens have obviously taken root in Japan, Japanese lawmakers regard it proper to provide these foreign nationals with stable residence on a family basis by easing the requirements on these foreign nationals.

Applicant foreign national is regarded as behaving “good” if he/she does not have any criminal record (or does not suffer any protective measure in accordance with Juvenile Law), fulfills his/her taxpaying responsibility and other public obligations, and lives a life that would not lead to social criticism as a resident.

Applicant foreign national is deemed as having “sufficient assets or ability to make an independent living” if he/she does not pose any burden on the government in his/her daily life and is expected to live a stable future life from the viewpoint of his/her assets or abilities. In this context, even if the applicant does not meet this requirement by himself/herself, the applicant is regarded as satisfying it as long as he/she is expected to continue a stable life on a household basis including his/her parent or spouse.

In the context of the phrase “the Minister of Justice may grant permission only when he deems …that his permanent residence will be in accordance with the interests of Japan,” the applicant must be recognized as beneficial to the Japanese society and economy if the applicant is granted the permanent residence status. In making this judgment, the immigration control authority pays attentions to Japan’s capacity to accept foreign nationals (such as Japan’s national land conditions, or demographic trends) as well as immigration control-related circumstances at home and abroad, and other factors. Minister of Justice has a wide range of discretion in making judgment on if or not he will grant permanent residence status to foreign nationals.

Q: In which cases will I be revoked my status of residence? Would you tell me some specific cases?

A: Your status of residence will be revoked if you submit a fake document or makes false statements on your application forms when entering Japan or extending your period of stay. In addition, Your status of residence will also be revoked if you have the status of residence as listed on Annexed Table I (i.e., Engineer, Skilled Labor or College Student) but fails to engage in his/her applicable activities for three months without legitimate grounds.

Q: What kind of procedures do I go through to revoke my status of residence?

A. If Minister of Justice intends to revoke a status of residence, the minister is supposed to hold a hearing session for the applicant in order to listen to his/her opinions in advance. 

Q: How will I be notified if my status of residence is revoked? Will an immigration officer affix a stamp on my passport?

A. If the immigration control authority decides to revoke your status of residence, you will be notified of such fact in the form of Eligibility Revocation Letter. If the authority delivers the letter directly to you, an immigration officer will indicate revocation of your eligibility on your passport.


Q: Will Focus Education help me with pre-departure formalities?

A: Yes. Focus Education will organize a pre-departure orientation program which will help you in your transition to life as a student in the Japan. The program will address topics ranging from cross-cultural issues to ticketing, medical insurance, foreign exchange rates, documents you should take with your while traveling to the Japan, arriving to college or university, orientation at college or university, insurance policy, airport pick-up and accommodation booking, etc.

Q : Is there anything I should consider taking to Japan?

A : Following things should be considered;

  • Familiar general medications, health care products etc, as required. Even aspirin and Vitamin C are outrageously expensive here. If you use alternative herbal medications like Erinacea etc, taking them — they are very hard to find in Japan! Roll-on deodorant if you use it. Cold treatment, if you think you may need it. If you need prescription medications, it may be best to take them with you. But to avoid possible delay in Customs on arrival, prescription medications should be in original packages or properly labeled. (Japan is extremely cautious about drugs. Sniffer dogs check all incoming bags). Even herbal tobacco may be suspect and result in a tense delay. 
  • Non-lace-up footwear – such as slip-on, velcro-fastened or zipped shoes/boots – makes life much easier, as you often take shoes off & put them on again. 
  • Kyoto guidebook: Lonely Planet Guide to Kyoto is highly recommended, very useful to pre-read too
  • Cheap snack food: we suggest bringing nuts, dried fruit, trail mix, health bars, the kind of snack food that keeps up your energy on field trips. This stuff is not so commonly available in Japan and is absurdly expensive in tiny packages!


Q: What about travel arrangements?

A. The Japanese Language schools will arrange airport pick-up service when you arrive in Japan.


Q: How much are living expenses per month?

A: Total average cost: 100,000yen – 150,000yen

(Cost example: Rent (including energy costs) 40,000yen-70,000yen, Food 20,000yen-30,000yen, Mobile Phone 5000yen,1 month transport 10,000yen、Other 20,000yen-30,000yen)


Q: Can I work on a full time basis with “Dependent” visa, though?

A: Please keep in your mind that “Dependent” visa may allow you to stay legally in Japan with your family but not to work on a full time basis. However, those “dependent” visa holders in Japan may work on a part time basis within the limit stipulated by the Immigration Bureau. If you have to work on a full time basis, we advise you to apply for a corresponding working visa such as “International specialist” and/or “Engineer” etc. The Immigration Bureau will grant you such a working visa if your case will meet requirements for the corresponding visa accordingly.


Q: Am I allowed to do part time work?

A: If students wish to have a part-time job, they must get permission from the Immigration Bureau who will issue you with ‘Shikaku-gai Katudo Kyoka’ (ie. Permission to engage in an activity other than that permitted under the status of residence previously granted). However, you must maintain good attendance levels at school. Working hours should be a maximum of 4 hours per day. You should not work late at night, in the entertainment and amusement industry (such as in bars, marjong parlours, game centres, etc.) or do dangerous or hazardous work. If a foreign national stays in Japan with the residence of status “College Student” or “Pre-college Student,” such foreign national may obtain a comprehensive permission to engage in unauthorized activities without restrictions on activities or locations. In this case, applicant must submit “supporting document” available from the educational institute to which the applicant enrolls. However, the aforementioned comprehensive permission also have some limitations on foreign national’s activity duration or activity locations, as stated below. Upper limit of foreign national’s activity duration(College Students). This type of foreign nationals may run an income-generating business or engage in a remuneration-generating activities for 28 hours or shorter a week (or 8 hours or shorter a day during long vacation of the educational institute)

Japan Student Visa

Request Counseling for the Japan

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