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Japan to ease COVID-19 entry curbs on foreigners with resident visas: NHK

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That's nice, but a lot of damage has been done.

53 ( +57 / -4 )

Better late than never I guess.

24 ( +29 / -5 )

GOOD! But that doesn't change the fact that the LDP are a bunch of scum as this ban should never have been done in the first place. I guess the international outcry was really effective. Embarrassment on the international stage is a very effective tool against the LDP

40 ( +52 / -12 )

Good, but the damage is done.

There are people stuck outside Japan for months now, many of them might not have jobs when they come back!!!

43 ( +49 / -6 )

I will believe it once it is actually implemented!!

And even if so YEAH it was far far too late & I & I bet a great many other decades long residents will NOT forget this betrayal, especially those who were stuck outside Japan & likely lost a LOT & in some cases likely EVERYTHING!!!

This shot across my bow was NOTED!!

36 ( +41 / -5 )

Great news, finally the borders are open! Can wait to come back to Japan and do some travelling!

-40 ( +8 / -48 )

And even if so YEAH it was far far too late & I & I bet a great many other decades long residents will NOT forget this betrayal

I won't. I was flirting with the idea of immigrating to Canada. I am now in touch with a proper immigration lawyer. This will never be our home. The LDP has made sure of that

38 ( +43 / -5 )

Too late Japan, you've woken up those that might have invested in setting down roots in Japan with this shortsighted and Xenophobic policy that somehow will now change after you've been called out on it numerous times.

27 ( +34 / -7 )

It is about time.

One item of interest;

Re-entry will be permitted for visa holders including permanent residents and exchange students

We now know there is no value of Permanent Residence in Japan as Permanent Residents are grouped in with standard visa holders and exchange students.

This is in no way at all meant to degrade those that are not Permanent Residents it is only meant to identify the fact that the value of Permanent Residency is significantly diminished.

40 ( +44 / -4 )

"Plan to ease".

Good to say that but nothing implemented yet. It will start with a few countries, and this will be extended step by step. The J-Government will say " you see, we do something" An PCR 72 hours before arriving may also be necessary. Other conditions, such good reason for a trip might be ask. Who knows. Wait and see.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

Did they finally realize it was the Japanese who were spreading the virus?

24 ( +34 / -10 )

We now know there is no value of Permanent Residence in Japan as Permanent Residents are grouped in with standard visa holders and exchange students.

That's why I felt more joy at passing JLPT1 than when I got PR. And the JLPT is pretty useless too.

19 ( +25 / -6 )

@larr, Did you read the part about testing an quarantine in the article ?

The one related to science and medicine, the strange foreign concepts not based on race.

irresponsible to open to borders for foreigner

1 ( +6 / -5 )

We now know there is no value of Permanent Residence in Japan as Permanent Residents are grouped in with standard visa holders and exchange students.

This is in no way at all meant to degrade those that are not Permanent Residents it is only meant to identify the fact that the value of Permanent Residency is significantly diminished.

Having lived here for over 3 decades and having known and spoken to myriad individuals

7 ( +8 / -1 )

it soon came to my attention that being a ‘permanent resident’ meant extremely little.

There is no change in the pecking order for those individuals...

18 ( +20 / -2 )

Exchange students bring money and allow universities to survive. That is why they are easily allowed. And then they can later change their visas for ”特定技能” ”Specific skilled visa”. Japan needs that workers. The final aim for that is economy...........

12 ( +13 / -1 )

About time.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

@kurisupisu

it soon came to my attention that being a ‘permanent resident’ meant extremely little.

There is no change in the pecking order for those individuals...

I am 2 1/2 decades in here and I agree with you in principal. I think many of us realized the same thing to an extent.

However this brings a new dimension to this and honestly I did not expect this to be so drastic (especially for those with Japanese spouses or families). We now all fully understand the reality of this situation going forward.

16 ( +17 / -1 )

Depending on where you are living better think twice and make the comparison of COVID-19 situation and opt in for the safer place to stay in my opinion. Just because the number here is low doesn't mean there is no pandemic here in Japan.

-4 ( +7 / -11 )

NHK said the government had received "many opinions" calling on it to relax the restrictions for the resumption of social and economic activities.

half the world gave opinion on that

12 ( +13 / -1 )

Yep too little too late, non-Japanese should know very clearly now that they will always be second class citizens. To be honest, you'd have to be a bit silly or desperate to stay in Japan after this!

15 ( +20 / -5 )

Yep too little too late, non-Japanese should know very clearly now that they will always be second class citizens. To be honest, you'd have to be a bit silly or desperate to stay in Japan after this!

Some unfortunately have no choice as they are too in deep with family ties. But as a current student, I have to be stupid to not look elsewhere to migrate. I really wanted to call this place home but now I've even stopped learning Japanese. I'm done.

18 ( +22 / -4 )

This is just 1 of the few requests I've been getting in my mail recently:

"Hi, I am a tenant at -----------------.

My wife and I are in Australia and we have not been able to come back to Japan since January. It will be difficult to return before the end of 2020.

We want to ask about removing our household items from the apartment and concluding the rental agreement."

11 ( +12 / -1 )

@Aly Rustom

I was flirting with the idea of immigrating to Canada. I am now in touch with a proper immigration lawyer. This will never be our home.

I am sorry to hear that, but of course everyone is free to go wherever he wants.

I just hope that you will not face many negative aspects in Canada too, and then you will be very unhappy in Canada too.

-14 ( +9 / -23 )

The government is planning to allow the re-entry of all residential status holders on the condition that they take PCR virus tests and quarantine themselves for two weeks at designated hotels.

Do Japanese stay at designated hotels for 2 weeks?

If it is. It is basically the same unfair treatment for foreigners.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

Glad to hear that. I wonder if my company will make me use paid holidays during the quarantine or if I can just do telework as normal.

Anyone really bent out of shape over the 4 months we could not enter/re-enter Japan from about April-August, consider getting a Japanese passport. I heard it is pretty easy to do if you already have PR.

-4 ( +6 / -10 )

kurisupisu

it soon came to my attention that being a ‘permanent resident’ meant extremely little.

There is no change in the pecking order for those individuals...

That was made known when PRs were no longer allowed to use the Japanese entry gates, but had to suffer the long back logs with tourists in the Foreigners' entry gates.

-4 ( +5 / -9 )

Absolutely pathetic!

Permanent Residents have long standing loyalty and commitment to Japan and they get treated this way.

21 ( +25 / -4 )

Japan plans to ease its COVID-19 entry restrictions 

The key word here is plan.

We all know that there's another 50 stages after the planning phase before they finally come to a decision.

Thanks for the false hope.

14 ( +16 / -2 )

It's a step in the right direction.

But Aussies who want to go home for a trip are unlikely to be allowed to leave Australia to return to Japan anyway, thanks to our government's travel ban. I can understand them restricting people coming into the country, but leaving? Insane.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Will the Japanese government be reimbursing PRs for their losses over this?

7 ( +13 / -6 )

This is in no way at all meant to degrade those that are not Permanent Residents it is only meant to identify the fact that the value of Permanent Residency is significantly diminished

I think the real value in permanent residency is in not needing to go to the immigration office and not being dependent on anyone but yourself for your visa. That said, I understand your point and agree with it.

15 ( +16 / -1 )

Do Japanese really quarantine in a designated hotel for 14 days upon re-arrival.?? I doubt it. I heard there was no law in Japan for compulsory quarantine of Japanese in hotels.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

@TigersTokyoDome

I am also curious about this. Do Japanese need to quarantine at a hotel? If someone returns with their family can the family (Japanese) go home and the foreigner must stay in a hotel?

If we have a home which we pay for in Japan why should we have to go to the extra expense?

It is a very good question

10 ( +12 / -2 )

@TigersTokyoDomeToday  11:01 am JST

Do Japanese really quarantine in a designated hotel for 14 days upon re-arrival.?? I doubt it. I heard there was no law in Japan for compulsory quarantine of Japanese in hotels.

I guess no unless you say you have no place to go, but the private transportation rule to leave airport is pretty strict. My coworker's little bro, stayed 14 days in the airport, since there were nobody to take him up with private vehicle.

I shocked one more time to family relations in JP between new generation.

As soon as I know, if you declare that you have your own residence to stay, will quarantine yourself 14 days and if you leave the airport with your private car, they losing your track and kind of you are free to do what you want.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Thanks Engr. I have not heard of Japanese quarantined offsite for 14 days. So it is not the same treatment.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

My understanding is that if you arrive at Narita or Haneda, you can have someone pick you up or hire a car (they have some service for maybe 20,000 yen or less) to take you to your home and you sign an affidavit that you promise to quarantine. On the other hand, if you do not live near Tokyo you cannot get on a connecting flight so you would have to stay at the designated hotel near the airport unless a really really good friend drove to the airport to pick you up. In any case this is good news.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I'll have to wait for the quarantine details, but this sounds like a move in the right direction.

I hope the Japanese authorities realize that many NJ have private cars in Japan or at least access to one.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

That was made known when PRs were no longer allowed to use the Japanese entry gates, but had to suffer the long back logs with tourists in the Foreigners' entry gates.

Er, come again? I get waved through to the Japanese line each time I pass through immigration. Must just be you?

1 ( +8 / -7 )

@YeahRight

That was made known when PRs were no longer allowed to use the Japanese entry gates, but had to suffer the long back logs with tourists in the Foreigners' entry gates.

I am not sure if we are talking about the same thing but since the fingerprinting was initiated for Residents in 2006, re-entrants (not only Permanent Residents) have had our own line to return to Japan. Maybe we are not talking about the same subject.

Ironically at that the time Governor of Hyogo Prefecture and the Mayor of Kobe lobbied on behalf of foreign residents and each sent a formal letter of protest to the Immigration Bureau. They were the only prefectural Governor and City Mayor to do so (I thought that was pretty cool when I read that)

In my experience the re-entry line is sometimes/often shorter for re-entrants than the line for citizens.

15 ( +15 / -0 )

I missed my father's funeral in May because of the lockdown/lockout. Many people (myself included, a PR for decades) got the shaft from the govt.

11 ( +15 / -4 )

When Fukushima happened, most foreigners stuck with Japan unconditionally.

When COVID happened, Japan didn't stick with it's foreign population.

This ease of entry restriction is obviously good news but it's delay is a serious eye-sore for Japan.

Now future newcomers know how they will be treated when, God forbid, a major disaster strikes again.

12 ( +14 / -2 )

To be honest, I haven't traveled outside of Japan in about 15 years or such, so maybe things have changed since I last went through. I just seem to remember there was a time that re-entrants, other than those with Special Permanent Residency (zainichi Kankojin and such), had to go through the same line as those just coming for a holiday. Like I said, it has been quite some time since I left Japan (and very likely never will again), so I may be remembering things wrong or things may have changed since that time. Apologies if I am wrong on this.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Thanks Ricky C. Let's hope this is the case. But the question still remains whether Japanese have to quarantine. Otherwise it's not the same treatment.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

What @Didou said is the exact Point: "Plan to ease".

Nothing yet is implemented.

Before everyone gets into an euphoria, I recommend to calm down and wait for the final conclusion.

I hope everyone will not get a "cold shower" from the conclusion.

-2 ( +7 / -9 )

RecklessToday  11:13 am JST

My understanding is that if you arrive at Narita or Haneda, you can have someone pick you up or hire a car (they have some service for maybe 20,000 yen or less) to take you to your home and you sign an affidavit that you promise to quarantine. On the other hand, if you do not live near Tokyo you cannot get on a connecting flight so you would have to stay at the designated hotel near the airport unless a really really good friend drove to the airport to pick you up. In any case this is good news.

This sounds right. Someone I know had a family member arrive from Canada, so he had to drive to Narita, pick up his son and drive back to Osaka, then the son had to stay isolated at home for 2 weeks before he could go outside. The son had a week of freedom before flying back to Canada for another 2 weeks of quarantine!

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Anyone really bent out of shape over the 4 months we could not enter/re-enter Japan from about April-August, consider getting a Japanese passport. I heard it is pretty easy to do if you already have PR.

This treatment has me considering this. Either leave the country or just obtain citizenship. Because of family ties and other reasons, I am inclined to stay. So far, I haven't seen any disadvantages to becoming a citizen, only advantages at this point.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Welcome news, if true, but the way the government has handled (created?) this issue is absolutely disgraceful, and will not be forgotten anytime soon.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

I am sorry to hear that, but of course everyone is free to go wherever he wants.

Thank you for your kind words Monty. It means a lot to me. really.

I just hope that you will not face many negative aspects in Canada too, and then you will be very unhappy in Canada too.

I've lived in Canada before. now every place has its good and its bad points, but my decision to leave after DECADES here comes from the shock of seeing what the LDP is capable of.

I mean, I expect them to be racist against us, but what about my Japanese wife and kids? I'm their provider, and if I had to leave for an emergency like I had to last summer, I may or may not have been allowed back and then my wife and kids would have been on the street. I just cant take the risk with this SICK government. Not with the lives of my wife and kids.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

Many of them don't want to come back after this treatment it was the last chance for them.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

@Reckless - consider getting a Japanese passport. I heard it is pretty easy to do if you already have PR.

Probably easier! Though you have to consider the issues of dual nationality restrictions, and possibly giving up your original nationality.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Er, come again? I get waved through to the Japanese line each time I pass through immigration. Must just be you?

this is true. I am also told to go into the re- entry permit line even though I have PR. But what is to complain here? I get done much faster than the Japanese national line.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@Aly Ruston

I see...I understand your point.

I also live here in Japan for many years but I still enjoy every day.

I am very happy to live here and I will never leave Japan. (Just for business or travel)

Of course there are days, where I am saying, “Damned Japan”.

But I think “such days” are everywhere in each country, wherever you live. No country is perfect.

I know, as a foreigner in Japan I will be never treated like a “full” Japanese citizen, but that is OK for me. I accept that.

In my home country, and also in many other countries all over the world, it is the same situation. Foreigners will never be treated in the same way like “inborn citizens”, right?

Anyway...I am sorry to hear that you are disappointed from Japan and really hope that you can find a safer and happier life for you and your family in Canada,...or who knows somewhere else.

Family is the most treasure we have.

0 ( +10 / -10 )

I was stuck in the US for 5 weeks...I had left Tokyo the day that the borders were closed. I had to sign a form acknowledging that my return was questionable....I returned when the US had really started to become infected and was brought to the back at Haneda and asked why I was returning while they showed me the paper I had signed....after a phone call to my wife (I am not a PR....just a spousal visa).....I was allowed to leave....I had arranged for a private pick up but when I left the baggage area, nobody actually checked if I had a ride....I did my home quarantine for 2 weeks even though my airport test results came back negative after 3 days

12 ( +12 / -0 )

after a phone call to my wife (I am not a PR....just a spousal visa).....I was allowed to leave....I had arranged for a private pick up but when I left the baggage area, nobody actually checked if I had a ride....I did my home quarantine for 2 weeks even though my airport test results came back negative after 3 days

Sounds like you were well treated.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Good news if it happens, I’m not celebrating until it does. The problem is, as others have said, the damage has been done. It has tarnished Japan’s reputation abroad and will make people and businesses think twice about coming here.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Good news. But this whole episode has really soured my feelings towards this country in a way that nothing like it ever has before.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Anyway...I am sorry to hear that you are disappointed from Japan and really hope that you can find a safer and happier life for you and your family in Canada,...or who knows somewhere else.

Thank you monty. but I want to say that I'm not disappointed in Japan. Just in the Leadership, which I feel will never change

Family is the most treasure we have.

Absolutely

9 ( +10 / -1 )

This looks promising, it may be a way to cut quarantine time for many travellers.

https://www.theguardian.com/travel/2020/aug/19/heathrow-rapid-covid-test-centre-could-replace-quarantine

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Since it was questioned several times on this page if "Japanese have to quarantine" ... YES, I think so. On July 16th, a Japanese friend who came back from Germany did enter "voluntary isolation required by returnees" before heading to Tokyo. He spent two weeks on some dedicated hotel secured by the government.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Why not right now? These people have waited months already!

2 ( +4 / -2 )

“Thank you monty. but I want to say that I'm not disappointed in Japan. Just in the Leadership, which I feel will never change”

Same

5 ( +7 / -2 )

I like how they play this as a positive instead of admitting they've been flat out racist for months and with zero defense.

7 ( +15 / -8 )

Monty

I just hope that you will not face many negative aspects in Canada too, and then you will be very unhappy in Canada too.

Atleast in Canada. He won't be asked "Where are you from and when are you going back to your country"

13 ( +13 / -0 )

.I had left Tokyo the day that the borders were closed. I had to sign a form acknowledging that my return was questionable...

So everyone who left the country left knowing full well that return was questionable?

And that there's no way to get a special permit of sorts that guarantees coming back won't be denied?

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@Aly Rustum - I'll be returning to Canada as well in September for the same reasons, and continue the fight to improve the society hear from a more welcoming and creative community.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

doedel, you answered the question. "Voluntary" quarantine for Japanese. There is no law to hold them. Voluntary means Japanese only volunteer for it. Just like the two selfish plonkers who were flown back from Wuhan itself and refused to quarantine and were allowed to travel home.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I am really surprised that the entry ban finally made alot of people here realize that they are like disposables. The ban to me was no surprise and expected and as such not really mad about it. To me studying medicine here in Japan and not being able to do clinicals or practise is worse.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@Aly Rustum - I'll be returning to Canada as well in September for the same reasons, and continue the fight to improve the society hear from a more welcoming and creative community.

Good luck Doug. Canada's gain. Japan's loss. You're making the right choice

7 ( +9 / -2 )

In my home country, and also in many other countries all over the world, it is the same situation. Foreigners will never be treated in the same way like “inborn citizens”, right?

There are different degrees and you should view countries on an individual basis. I often hear apologists for Japan’s xenophobia say it’s the same everywhere. I’m a UK citizen who’s spent extended time in the US, China and Japan. The US was by far the most welcoming with Japan a distant second and China a distant third.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

I'm very worried about the level of quarantining happening. My friend, an exchange student studying in Osaka, had been stuck in her country in the Middle East since going to visit for break in February, but I heard she finally arrived back in Japan - and went straight to her apartment to clean out her 6-months-neglected fridge. The article talks about "next month", but she must have been doing paperwork for a few weeks now to have arrived already.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Wife just received my VISA paperwork yesterday, very happy to see this news. I've got 3 months to make it back there, lots to do before then. Thank you Mr Abe!

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

We all KNOW how extremely well foreigners (description and size, immaterial in Old Blighty) are treated on these shores.

37% of the population of London was born outside of the UK. Britain is one of the most welcoming countries in the world.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

PR in Japan is pretty much meningless, harder to get and more expensive compared to naturalization(it was 8000 yen when I did it, naturalization was free), that's why I became Japanese. People always say that you have to renounce your original citizenship, you don't have to, you just need to tell the Japanese government that you renounce it, no proof whatsoever. Whether you tell your original country's government is up to you.

If you plan to stay here long term naturalization is a no brainer, it's extremely easy to do and you only need the Japanese ability of a 2nd or 3rd grader,

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

Britain is one of the most welcoming countries in the world.

All the Brits I know speak badly of their country and want to stay in Japan and for Americans like me it is the opposite. Maybe it is a relic of winning the war.

-12 ( +1 / -13 )

Back on topic please.

Whenever this happens, and it is still vague, it will be good for the residents who are stuck abroad, but it won't be of much help to those already here who might have to go abroad for an emergency.

For example, if I have to go to Australia for a funeral, first I have to find a flight. As far as I know, there aren't any at the moment. And even if I do get there, I have to quarantine in a hotel for two weeks at my own expense, so I wouldn't be able to go to the funeral. Plus Australia's internal borders are closed. Then I have to fly back to Japan (not sure about where I have to be tested), after which I have to quarantine at my home in Tokyo for two weeks. Also, I can't use public transport to get from Haneda/Narita to my home.

So that's about 5 weeks and a massive expense.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

@El Rata, that takes cajones to do that. Also, the JP government may get you at some point, no? I would never renounce my US citizenship. It is worth all the gold in India. But be careful as follows:

*The automatic acquisition or retention of a foreign nationality does not affect U.S. citizenship; however, the acquisition of a foreign nationality upon one’s own application may cause loss of U.S. citizenship under Section 349(a)(1) of the Immigration and Naturalization Act (8 U.S.C. 1481). In order for loss of nationality to occur under Section 349(a)(1), it must be established *that the naturalization was obtained with the intention of relinquishing U.S. citizenship. Such an intention may be shown by a person’s statements or conduct.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Too late.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Rata

If you plan to stay here long term naturalization is a no brainer

No brainer, you must be kidding. Right ?

I have lived here 4 decades and never has it crossed my mind to naturalize despite

the government of my home country being one of the worst on this planet.

I am still proud of being a national of my country of birth. I don't have any features of a Japanese

to be a Japanese and won't have the patience to be explaining to Japanese that I had naturalized

and was now one of them because I know I won't ever be one of them or accepted as one.

9 ( +12 / -3 )

Too late japan

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I guess the international outcry was really effective. Embarrassment on the international stage is a very effective tool against the LDP

Aly...indeed brother... international loss of face is the only thing that gets the LDP moving... unfortunately.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

@El Rata

People always say that you have to renounce your original citizenship, you don't have to, you just need to tell the Japanese government that you renounce it, no proof whatsoever

Which country do you come from, if you don't mind me asking? Certain countries don't allow renouncing, so for those nationals it's a no brainer :)

2 ( +3 / -1 )

People have always been threatening to pack up and leave, and are always free to do so. I'm not sure how much Japan will really miss out on seeing people go? If you want to be valued, become a citizen. We tend to have rose tinted glasses on in terms of how immigrants and permanent residents are treated in other countries. I'm not a citizen, I'm a permanent resident on Japanese terms. I have never been under any impression that I was going to be treated like a Japanese person would be, but as an ethnic minority in my own country, I would say I've been treated pretty well. Going into my third decade in this country, I always promised myself that if it treated me horribly, I would go. A house, a tenured position in a good educational facility, a decent salary with decent holidays, maybe I'm just lucky? Or maybe like others I know here in similar situations, we just accepted a long time ago, that this is Japan, it isn't out to make my life better. The onus is on me to do that for myself. And for the record. I know foreigners who have been able to come back during this period after applying to the authorities. They waited and followed instructions. They also were back at work soon after completing quarantine. Different strokes for different folks. I wish those heading off overseas well. Hope the new countries treat you well.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

Qshu

I always promised myself that if it treated me horribly, I would go.

Treated horribly, like how ?

If you don't mind can tell us the things you considered horrible ?

Thanks

3 ( +4 / -1 )

A house, a tenured position in a good educational facility, a decent salary with decent holidays, maybe I'm just lucky? Or maybe like others I know here in similar situations, we just accepted a long time ago, that this is Japan, it isn't out to make my life better.

Excellent points. Actually once I get back to my country for a few weeks and relax and reconnect I may feel better about returning to Japan.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Hopefully they follow the rules when they come back

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

maybe I'm just lucky? 

Seems to me with that outlook and attitude you created your own luck

1 ( +1 / -0 )

No brainer, you must be kidding. Right ? I have lived here 4 decades and never has it crossed my mind to naturalize despite the government of my home country being one of the worst on this planet. I am still proud of being a national of my country of birth. I don't have any features of a Japanese

I used to think that way, but where you are born is just an accident of birth. It's ridiculous that one has to be bound to the place they were born in, but that's the way things work now. To me, people should adopt whatever citizenship works best for them. I wouldn't feel compelled to explain to explain myself, nor would I need to be accepted. There are tons of native Japanese who aren't accepted here, and they live with it. I have lived outside my home country so long, I would have trouble accepting life there the way it is now. Easier just to adopt a new country.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

@Petras

Apart from having Japanese citizenship, I posses American, Mexican and Australian citizenships. When I came to Japan I used my Mexican passport precisely because I knew that if I were to lose a citizenship, should I decide to naturalize Japanese at some point, I wouldn't mind that one. JP government doesn't even know about me being American or Aussie and it turns out that Mexico doesn't allow you to relinquish citizenship as well. I know that I will never be Japanese in the eyes of my fellow "countrymen" but I don't have to worry about being kicked out or not being able to enter the country in times of crisis.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

I am a former 10 year plus resident of Japan, now living in Hong Kong, but currently processing my visa paperwork to move back. Admittedly I should be last in line to enter Japan, but it is welcoming news that restrictions are finally starting to be eased. My company asked me several times to relocate to Tokyo HQ, and at first I was hesitant to go back to Japan, but with the escalations in Hong Kong and a relocation package on the table, the writing is on the wall for me to return. With the handling of COVID-19, I can understand why many long-term residents are considering leaving. I made that same decision to leave Japan several years ago but now find myself circling back.

Several people have asked about whether or not returning Japanese nationals are required to quarantine at designated hotels. I know two Japanese nationals who have returned in the last few weeks and this is their experience. No health certificate is needed pre-departure, and upon arrival they must take a simple swab test (not the invasive one up the nose...not looking forward...). After a few hours the results were released and they could then travel on freely. Technically they are advised to self-quarantine at home, but this is not compulsory. One of my friends did say he received a phone call from the authorities calling to check-in, and they left a message along the lines of try to limit time spent outside. Foreigners, however, must present a health certificate issued within the last 3 days prior to boarding, take a PCR test upon arrival, and then quarantine at government designated facility. NHK reported that they both Japanese and foreigners are being processed the same but clearly that is not the case.

Anyways, the situation is what it is. I do hope that those stuck outside ultimately get some kind of tax break or something to offset the loses. That being said, Japan is a great country with plenty of other redeeming qualities. It's a once in a lifetime pandemic that hopefully never happens again.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@ i@n. Maybe, so. I'm not sure to be honest how it flew by like it has. But it has for the most part been hard work, being upfront and honest, trusting my gut, and treating people how I would like to be treated back. It has held me in good stead. I've never groveled or kissed butt, it just isn't in my makeup. I've had heated arguments when I've felt someone was treated me unfairly, and haven't suffered as I knew I had others in my court because it was just a case of right and wrong.

@Reckless. I hope you can get back soon, and are able to return to how things were before you left.

@drlucifer. I think I had read so many horror stories, and a lot of complaints of life in Japan (especially up in the large urban areas) I came out here a little bit apprehensive. I knew others who had lived here before I came out who had said that they had been reminded of their place as "outsiders" but on reflection, a lot of that was their own personality issues. Heck, they clashed with people at home. I suppose if I had people coming up to me saying "gaijin go home" if I lived in a community were not being allowed into facilities because I'm not Japanese was a regular thing, I suppose if I was made to feel uncomfortable while out and about, then those things would have made me think it was time to leave. I haven't had that. Maybe a few small minded people have made dumb comments, but I've never shied away from giving it right back.

The current setup isn't ideal for a lot of people. But we aren't in ordinary times. People are losing their jobs the world over, and if I'm being honest, people claiming they're leaving Japan and are off to greener pastures - good luck. Tell the rest of us which countries are looking for workers so we can share the good news. All I keep reading overseas is of redundancies and rising unemployment which Japan stands to benefit from because desperate people will move anywhere.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

If anyone saw NHK's news at 9pm tonight there was a segment on this issue (kind of)

Anyone watching this would leave with the impression that foreigners in Japan are workers or beasts of burden to be exploited for cheap labor,

It is amazing that NHK could take something which could be perceived as good news and screw it up beyond all reality.

One of the most offensive things I have seen in my 2 1/2 decades.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

@Qshu 76

Thank you very much for sharing, that was the distilled essence of your life experiences right there.

More power to you, may your tribe increase and prosper.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

What gets me is when people say," In my home country or where I'm from..." Why do they have to be so timid in not saying where they're from? Just feels so damn untrustworthy being like that.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Below link is the original Japanese URL from NHK, which mentioned 在留資格のある外国人 再入国制限緩和へ

https://www3.nhk.or.jp/news/html/20200821/k10012576621000.html?utm_int=news-new_contents_list-items_157

I'm currently in Australia and I have 在留資格認定証明書 (Certificate of Eligibility) to work in Japan.

Can anyone please tell me does it mean I'll be allowed to enter Japan?

Or, unfortunately this is not the case and I have to wait until border restrictions for Australian residents under business purposes to be lifted?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

What gets me is when people say," In my home country or where I'm from..." Why do they have to be so timid in not saying where they're from? Just feels so damn untrustworthy being like that.

It is very dodgy. It’s useful to bring the experience of your own country to discussions like this. Why people don’t do this is very suspicious.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

And now cue the flood of desperate people who WOULD have maintained quarantine before but now won't and can't. And that will lead to a cluster or two and the B.S. ban put back into place.

I guess I will just have to hope that some government clowns will get some jail time. Surely this is all some sort of legal violation. Hope I said. I don't expect it.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Why do they have to be so timid in not saying where they're from? Just feels so damn untrustworthy being like that.

It is very dodgy. It’s useful to bring the experience of your own country to discussions like this. Why people don’t do this is very suspicious.

Untrustworthy, dodgy, suspicious... Wow! I guess I'd better go down to the local koban and turn myself in. I'm probably a danger to society. Please explain why it's so important for you to know where I'm from. What business is it of yours if I don't feel like saying? What difference does it make? By the way, I haven't lived in my own (unnamed) country for 30 years and have little confidence that I could speak accurately for all of the people or accurately reflect the wide variety of attitudes and opinions. Who can, anyway? People are different, right? I speak for myself, only.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

Not helpful to those who had to leave the country and had to give up their resident visa in order to renew their passport before expiry in their country of origin. The Embassies that normally handle these matters with ease were closed and overseas mail could not move between countries.

Some of these are people whose spouses remained in Japan. They're now forced to return on a tourist visa. Good work, Japan.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Well, it’s about time they did this, And I’m certainly glad that they did. It does make me feel a little bit better about the prospect of moving to Japan a few years.

However, I have to agree with a lot of the commenters on here. This was done way too late, there has been a lot of economic damage that has been done because of this, and it does shake people’s confidence as to whether or not they will be treated fairly as permanent residents. Hopefully this will change in the future, but as I said, this definitely raises a lot of doubts in peoples minds.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Welcome news... until the next Pandemic from China's CCP Biological Weapons Department.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

“What gets me is when people say," In my home country or where I'm from..." Why do they have to be so timid in not saying where they're from? Just feels so damn untrustworthy being like that.”

This is the news site where you give your opinion. Unlike community forum where people share information.

All comment / opinion should equally viewed no matter who/where/race you are.

Unfortunately, not everyone is open minded.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

@SPRING - it's irrelevant information. The fact is, that this is where the Problem relevant to this Article is. Each and every other Country has various other issues - some similar to this.

Ideally we should all collectively sue the CCP to recoup losses ... but that isn't really going to happen. So instead, just stop buying anything that is "Made in China".

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

i was thinking to start business here in 2020 and settle here... Moving to Korea and investing there.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Talked 4 hours with Japanese friend who told me how she feels shame about what the country did to citizens including foreigners.

The news is good for those who are stucked outside but damages are already done. I had two relatives who died and I could not be there inspite of being PR...

This is just the biggest proof to the world that governments/administrations full of dinosaurs leave in another world and time.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

I had two relatives who died and I could not be there inspite of being PR...

But they allow PR holders to come back under that circumstance

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

i was thinking to start business here in 2020 and settle here... Moving to Korea and investing there.

only 4 months remaining for the year.

anyway, now is not the time to be starting a business.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

i was thinking to start business here in 2020 and settle here... Moving to Korea and investing there.

I’m sure that ones the relevant authorities read your post, they’ll quickly change their stance in order to get you to stay, for their economic benefit.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

NHK did a follow up story last night, that seemed to suggest the measure is prompted by the large number of foreigners who work at Japanese farms, which are dependent on their labor, and it cited concerns that Japanese people might have less food if the govt continues to block the farm workers entry to the country.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Foreigners, however, must present a health certificate issued within the last 3 days prior to boarding, take a PCR test upon arrival, and then quarantine at government designated facility.

So, what is the cost of staying in at a ‘quarantine facility’ (it won’t be free) and that will be for two weeks and for many that means loss of income, right?

It will be interesting to see how and by whom this is to be implemented.

And as for getting a PCR test abroad?

Are the airlines now going to demand proof of this before they allow boarding?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

In the UK

https://www.msn.com/en-gb/travel/news/heathrows-rapid-covid-test-centre-e2-80-98could-replace-quarantine-e2-80-99/ar-BB189r2j

3 ( +3 / -0 )

In Japan, they make people go through hoops to get a PCR test

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Welcome news... until the next Pandemic from China's CCP Biological Weapons Department.

Really? I heard the pandemic is part of a plan by billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates who wants to take advantage of the “false” coronavirus pandemic to implant a microchip in the population via an equally fraudulent vaccination, in a bid to control the population of the planet. All of this with the help of 5G and the lizard men elite...

That or it was Abe and Unit 731...

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Carrying a resident visa helps prevent contagion, I suppose. At any rate, a big relief to many.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

People threatening to leave e.t.c... funny stuff. Has anyone seen the airport websites? There are no flights! You can't leave!

The LDP have been utterly terrible in their response to the virus. Why wasn't there any announcements made about closing borders and canceling flights? There were none!

Their ministry website looks like it was made by a 5 year old.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Once again, the Japanese government are trying to pretend as if they're doing foreigners a big favour, while setting the bar so high, few of us can actually fulfil the requirements. I don't have a Japanese driving licence, so how the hell am I'm going to make it back home without using public transport. Walking will take several days. And I am not going to spend money on a Narita hotel for 2 weeks. And where exactly can we get a test when we don't have symptoms.

I hope people realize there are more welcoming countries in the world.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

"i was thinking to start business here in 2020 and settle here... Moving to Korea and investing there."

Hong Kong please; Japan simply won't do.

"Spat at, segregated, policed: Hong Kong's dark-skinned minorities say they've never felt accepted"

"https://edition.cnn.com/2020/08/21/asia/hong-kong-racism-intl-hnk-dst/index.html"

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

About time!

Will all countries be quarantined on the re-entry? How about "Green" countries?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I just got back Sunday on a humanities engineer visa. Starting August 5, people on similar visas who left before lockdown have been allowed back in. Requirements are:

Getting certificate of reentry from Japanese consulate

In San Francisco, you have to fill out a form and present your passport, residence card, and photocopy of back of your reentry slip in your passport showing your departure date. You must do this in person and you must make an appointment. Initial hurdle was the visa section wouldn’t pick up the phone. Recently I see the website allows reservations to be made online. I had an appointment for 10:30, but showed up at 10 opening and they gave me a no. 1 service card, so sort of first come first serve. Anyway went in on a Tuesday and certificate was ready on Friday. I went back on Friday at 10 but they told me they only hand out the certificates at 2:30 to 3:30. Came back and got it. Check handout time.

Getting results of covid test in 72 hours before flight

In sf, you can get covid tests for free at CVS and elsewhere for cheap prices. However because of the backlog, results arrive by internet about four to seven days later. There were several places offering same day results but when I tried to book them online all I got was “unavailable”. In any case Japan has a recommended form for test results and I don’t know if these places would fill it out or if printouts of their own would be acceptable in Japan (Japan says other forms also accepted, but...)

I found a concierge doctor office which takes appointments online and offers next day results. Went in at 2 pm and got results next day at 12. They filled out Japanese form for extra charge. They send results with form by email, but I went in to pickup the originals since you know... This cost like 250 dollars for the test and 35 for the form. So wherever you are look for concierge doctors.

Getting on United Airlines flight to Narita

With above two documents, they let you board. They had denied me boarding two other times for insufficient documentation out of abundance of caution.

Getting covid test at Narita

Spit test now, not nasal throat swab. Results in two hours. Plane landed at 2, got out at 5.

Designated quarantine location

This probably doesn’t mean what you think. Japan issues a list of hotels near the airport but that is all it is. A list. From the form, I think you can stay at any hotel in Tokyo you “designate”. Hotels in Tokyo are empty now. Book one week on any hotel site and then rebook for another week later. Don’t need to tell them you are quarantining. Or you can stay at your own place.

No public transportation

You can book a special limousine from the airport to Tokyo online in advance. Rakuraku taxi. Cash only I think. 30000 yen. A big van. Seats six or so. Usual taxi costs 25000 or so, therefore not unreasonable. They also offer rides to places like Osaka and everywhere else for much higher prices.

Yes yes I know some of the above solutions are expensive, but I am glad to be back.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

And this is for residents. For everyone who had plans to spend time in Japan this year visiting friends, for foreign exchange, studies, pilgrimage etc (not to mention Olympics) there is zero prospect of ever returning at present. Last time they did this thorough a job of closing the borders was the Shogunate in early 1600s and it lasted 250 years. I'm not holding my breath but I am bitterly disappointed. I'm in my 70s and I don't have unlimited time to wait so I may never see Japan again. (weeps )

3 ( +3 / -0 )

im iffy on this. Except virus cases to rise!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Irony of all this is that the pandemic is primarily a Japanese issue. There is absolutely no news about foreign permanent residents have the coronavirus.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Here's a question and apologies if this has been raised elsewhere ..... If the country's opening up to 000s of foreign individuals stranded overseas returning to Japan as well as business folk / those wishing to travel is conditional upon having PCR testing in sufficient numbers in place ...... Where (resources) can the week on week / month on month PCR capacity status reports from the nation's airports / entry points be found ? .... also begging the question, what number that will need to be before some normality returns to re-entry and those wishing to simply leave and come back to Japan ?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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