The japan passport is issued by Japan Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA). The Japanese passport was first issued in 21 May 1866 as a stamped letter of request to travel abroad. Then the word passport is introduced in 1900 with certain regulations. In 1926 passport was introduced as a booklet. Machine-readable passport was introduced in 1992. Then the biometric in 2006 and current version in 2013.
Japanese passport has ranked top as the strongest passport in the world in terms of travel freedom according to the British consulting company Henley Passport Index. Japanese citizens has visa-free or on-arrival visa access to most number of 191 countries and territories. But the interesting fact is that only 23% of japan citizens are holding passports. As of the end of 2018, there were almost 30 million valid passports, or just one for every four citizens, so many are not using them at all.
Usually visa is required to enter foreign country. To obtain visa applicant must submit required documents before entering country. Bus in case of Japanese citizen it is not required in most cases. It can be obtained as visa free or on arrival visa. This special concern is because of Japan’s economic and political stability and it has low criminal rates. Moreover only few people from japan seek refugee status. These status proves Japanese are very safe and thus allowed visa free travel.
Types of passports:
· Ordinary passport: It is issued to common Japanese citizens.
Ordinary passports are issued in two different periods of validity: 5 and 10 years. Citizen below 19 years are given 5 years validity and above 20 are with 5 and 10 years validity.
· Official passport: It is issued to members of the National Diet members and public civil servants.
· Diplomatic passport: It is issued to members of the Imperial Family or royal family and their family members, and high-level government officials. But generally the Emperor and Empress of Japan do not hold a passport.
Japanese passports are entirely printed in both the Japanese and English languages for easy reading.
Expiration: 10 years or 5 years for adults, 5 years for ages under 19
Ordinary passports- 5 years validity-dark blue covers
10 years validity-crimson-colored covers
Official passports-dark green covers,
Diplomatic passports-dark brown covers.
The first page of passport is called as data page. The information on data page are as follows
· Photo of the passport holder
· Issuing country
· Passport number
· Given name
· Date of birth
· Date of issue
· Date of expiry
· Issuing authority
· Signature of bearer
The data information page ends with the Machine Readable Zone in the current passport.