Embassy and Consulates of Belgium in Japan
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Frequently Asked Questions

1. Which documents does a Belgian national need to travel to Japan?

A valid Belgian passport is sufficient. However, if you have scheduled a transit through another country in Asia, please take into account that most other Asian countries require that your passport be valid for at least 6 months from the day of arrival.

2. Which means of payment can I use in Japan?

  • When travelling in Japan, don't always count on your credit card, but also carry a sufficient amount of ready cash (yens).
  • You can pay with the most common credit cards (Visa, MasterCard, JCB, Diners Club en American Express) in big hotels and shops, but not everywhere.
  • Changing money is also possible.

For useful addresses, please check the website of the JNTO (Japan National Tourism Organization): www.jnto.go.jp/eng/arrange/essential/money.html.

3. Withdrawing money from ATM’s

Before your departure, verify with your bank that your (Belgian) debit card MAESTRO can be used outside Europe.

Further details are available in Dutch or in French at the following website:

Dutch: www.mijnkaart.be/index/nl_BE/5631276/5647718/Maestro---V-PAY.htm
French: www.mijnkaart.be/index/fr_FR/5641909/5647719/Maestro---V-PAY.htm

In some cases, you will have to ask your bank to authorize the use of your debit card in Japan. As for Japan you need ask your bank for a temporary activation of the Maestro function on your debit card for use outside Europe before your departure.

The following cards can basically be used, during opening hours, in practically all Japanese post offices: Visa, Visa Electron, Plus, MasterCard, Cirrus, American Express, Diners Club International, JCB.

Convenience stores: you can withdraw money from Seven Bank ATMs (which you can find in Seven Eleven convenience stores and in Itoyokado supermarkets) or Aeon Bank ATMs (which you can find in Ministop convenience stores and Aeon supermarkets) with most types of foreign Credit Cards and Maestro/Cirrus cards. 

For more information, please see the following websites:

Mastercard: www.mastercard.co.jp/personal/atm-notification.html
Seven Bank: www.sevenbank.co.jp/intlcard/index2.html
Japan Post Bank: www.jp-bank.japanpost.jp/en/ias/en_ias_index.htm

4. Can I drive in Japan with an international driver's license issued in Belgium?

No. Japan does not recognize international driver's licenses issued on the basis of the Convention of Vienna on Road Traffic of 8 November 1968.

However, holders of a Belgian national driving license, planning to stay in Japan for a period of less than one year are allowed to drive in Japan with their Belgian license, provided that a Japanese translation is attached to it. A translation can be obtained at the Japan Automobile Federation (http://www.jaf.or.jp/e/translation/with.htm).