No matter how careful you are, you might encounter unexpected issues while vacationing abroad. Among those issues, losing your passport might be the most stressful one. It’s proof of who you are, after all, and where you are from, and while in Japan, you’re required to carry it with you at all times. So, what if you lose it?
Losing your passport abroad is no joke, especially when you don’t know the whole procedure: where to get a new one, how long it takes, what it costs, and so on.
Let’s go over every little detail of this worst-case scenario so that you’re properly prepared and can handle a case of a lost passport with confidence!
If You Cannot Find Your Passport: Go to Your Embassy or Consulate
If you lose your passport in Japan, you need to immediately go to your country’s embassy or consulate. However, you first need to take care of certain formalities with the Japanese authorities. If you lost your passport or had it stolen, you need to tell the Japanese police.
1) File a Report at a Police Station
As soon as you notice that your passport is missing, head to the nearest police station or police box called koban in Japanese. There’s a chance that someone handed it in as a lost item. You can go to any police station or box, but it is best to go to one that has jurisdiction over the area where you think you lost it. Police boxes and police substations will file a “loss/robbery report” with you, but you also need a certificate of loss called ishitsu todokede juri shōmeisho (遺失届出受理証明書) to apply for a new passport, and that can only be obtained at a real police station.
Not everyone speaks English in Japan, so it is best to bring a tour guide if you have one. Another option is to ask the staff at your hotel to call the police station and explain the situation prior to your visit.
2. Get a New Passport at the Embassy or Consulate
After getting the certificate of loss at the police station, contact the embassy or consulate of your country and ask about the procedure to have your passport re-issued. It’s best to call before going there in person to know what to bring, that will save you at least one trip. Prepare all the documents you need (see below) and the fee for the new passport and head to your embassy.
3. The New Passport Cannot be Used As-Is
Even if you have a new passport, it does not have the landing permission and period of stay slip that you got when arriving in Japan. Their validity does not change, but it requires a special procedure to transfer the information to your new passport. Bring it along with the certificate of loss to the nearest Immigration Bureau and ask for a Seal of Verification for Landing, called jōriku kyoka shōin (上陸許可証印) in Japanese. This is important because your passport number has changed.
Find your nearest Immigration Bureau from the following link:
4. What You Need for a New Passport
You need several documents to get a new passport at the embassy or consulate. What exactly is required differs by country, so be sure to check thoroughly what to bring. The basic requirements are as follows:
- Certificate of loss issued by the police station
- Facial picture (passport size)
- Some form of identification
Applications for issuing a new passport are often provided directly at the embassy or consulate, while some let you download the form online. In the case of a child’s passport, it may be necessary to show the passport of the parents and the required paperwork may be different, so be sure to check carefully what exactly is required.
5. Major Embassies: Addresses, Phone Numbers, Access
Here is a list of major embassies in Tokyo for reference. Note that the opening hours and other information may be subject to change, so we recommend confirming such details yourself via the official websites.
Embassy of the United States, Tokyo
Address: 1-10-5 Akasaka, Minato-ku, Tōkyō-to 107-8420
Phone: 03-3224- 5000
Nearest station: Tameike-Sannō Station
Hours: 8:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Passport fee: 145 dollars
Time required: 3 to 4 weeks (regular)
Embassy of Canada, Tokyo
Address: 7-3-38 Akasaka, Minato-ku, Tōkyō-to 107-0052
Nearest station: Aoyama-itchōme Station
Hours: 9:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Fee: 10-year adult passport (16 years of age or over): 21,100 yen
5-year adult passport (16 years of age or over): 15,400 yen
Time required: differs by case
British Embassy, Tokyo
Address: No 1 Ichiban-cho, Chiyoda-ku, Tōkyō-to 102-8381
Nearest station: Hanzōmon Station
Hours: 9:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Fee: Adult (16 and over) standard 34-page passport: 85 pound
Adult (16 and over) jumbo 50-page passport: 95 pound
Time required: 3 weeks
French Embassy, Tokyo
Address: 4-11-44 Minami-Azabu, Minato-ku, Tōkyō-to 106-8514
Nearest station: Hiroo Station
Hours: 9:00 a.m. – 11:30 p.m.
Time required: about 3 weeks
Australian Embassy, Tokyo
Address: 2-1-14 Mita, Minato-ku, Tōkyō-to 108-8361
Nearest station: Azabu-juban Station
Hours: 9:30 a.m.- 12:00 p.m., 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Fee: 10-year passport (adults, over 18): 31,500 yen
10-year passport (minors, 16-17): 27,200 yen
5-year passport (minors, 15 and under): 15,800 yen
5-year passport (seniors, over 75, optional): 20,100 yen
Time required: within 3 weeks (there is no service for immediate issuing)
The Australian Embassy in Tokyo can issue emergency passports which may take up to 48 business hours to issue. Please also note that credit card payments can be made for passports at the Embassy’s Consular Office. For all other Australian Consulates in Japan (Sapporo, Osaka and Fukuoka), please have Japanese yen ready. The cost of emergency passports can differ based on the exchange rate so we ask all Australians to check the Australian Embassy Tokyo website’s fee page for the month.
Royal Thai Embassy, Tokyo
Address: 3-14-6 Kamiōsaki, Shinagawa-ku, Tōkyō-to 141-0021
Nearest station: Meguro Station
Hours: 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m., 1:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Fee: 9,000 yen
Time required: about 4 weeks
Philippine Embassy, Tokyo
Address: 5-15-5 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tōkyō-to 106-8537
Nearest station: Azabu-juban Station
Hours: 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Fee: MRP Passport = machine-readable / starting from xx: 10,350 yen
E-Passport = passport with IC chip: 17,250 yen
Time required: 3 to 5 business days (regular)
Embassy of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, Tokyo
Address: 50-11 Motoyoyogichō, Shibuya-ku, Tōkyō-to 151-0062
Nearest station: Yoyogi-Hachiman Station
Hours: 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m., 2:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Fee: 25,000 yen
Time required: 2 weeks to 4 months if you have a copy of your lost passport (if not, the procedure can only be done in your country)
Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia, Tokyo
Address: 5-2-9 Higashigotanda, Shinagawa-ku, Tōkyō-to 141-0022
Nearest station: Meguro Station
Hours: 9:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m., 1:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Fee: 2,650 yen
Fee: the day after the request (excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and national holidays)
Embassy of Singapore, Tokyo
Address: 5-12-3 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tōkyō-to 106-0032
Nearest station: Azabu-juban Station
Hours: 9:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
*A temporary passport can be issued at the nearest consulate (a Singaporean ID card and a flight schedule to Singapore are required)
For other embassies, check the “Contact your embassy or consulate” section from the following link:
6. If You Cannot Get a New Passport in Japan
Some countries cannot re-issue your passport in Japan or the new passport might not be ready in time for your flight. However, you will not be able to leave the country without an official document.
In most cases, you will get a travel certificate called tokō shōmeisho (渡航証明書) in Japanese. Usually, the passport is such a travel certificate, but there are special documents exclusively valid for your trip home as well that act as a temporary passport. However, some countries conduct rather strict screenings on who can obtain such a document.
Furthermore, you will likely need proof of a flight home on top of an identification and passport pictures, to guarantee that you are able to return to your home country. Do keep in mind that in this case, entering any other country is strictly forbidden, so if it is not a direct flight, make sure to not enter another country during transit.
7. Both Passport and Money is Gone – How to Get Home?
Issuing a new passport doesn’t only take time but also costs quite a bit of money. Should you be extra unlucky and have your wallet stolen along with your passport, you might find yourself out of cash.
Cash is what you need for a new passport, however. The Australian Embassy, for example, only accepts cash payments in Japanese yen. Unless you exchange the money, it won’t help you in this specific case.
Some embassies do accept credit cards or checks, so do ask by all means. If your cards didn’t get taken, you will likely be able to withdraw cash for the procedure. If you have lost your credit card, the company behind it might be able to issue a new one fairly quick. If all of that is not an option, your family might be able to send you money to Japan as well.
In any case, returning home is rarely impossible and do not hesitate to ask your surroundings for help – it’s a lot to bear for one person. Your embassy will also help out with advice and more, so acting fast is key.
8. How to Not Lose Your Passport
As you’ve read so far, losing our passport abroad isn’t exactly a trifle. A fun vacation can quickly turn into a mountain of paperwork and errands to make sure that you can get back home, not to mention the stress of the whole situation.
That’s why not losing your passport in the first place is important. In Japan, you’re required to carry it with you at all times, but that also raises the chances of the passport going amiss. The best plan is to carry a copy with you while keeping the original in a hotel safe. The copy will also make the process easier if you happen to lose your passport after all. Make sure to also copy the page with the landing permission after your arrival.
It’s also a good idea to keep cash and credit card separately so that you don’t have to worry about being stranded without money. Keeping different cards in different cases raises the chances of you being left with some form of way to get cash.
If you want to be extra safe, it’s a good idea to have photos fit for a passport or ID card on you. Have the contact information of your embassy, consulate, insurance company, credit card company, family, and friends at the ready as well!
Losing your passport may also result in the document being used for international crimes or illegal immigration, which is why it is important to handle it responsibly, for your own sake and safety. Should you still happen to use it, don’t lose your head – just notify the authorities as soon as possible, follow the procedure, and everything will go swimmingly!
written by yoko
*Prices and options mentioned are subject to change.
*Unless stated otherwise, all prices include tax.
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