Japan and UK Confirm Working Holiday Visa Agreement

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Japan and the United Kingdom have reached an agreement to significantly increase the number of working holiday visas issued to each other’s citizens. Starting next year, both countries will issue up to 6,000 visas annually, a substantial increase from the current limits.

The agreement was formalized in Tokyo by Japan’s Foreign Minister Yoko Kamikawa and British Foreign Secretary James Cleverly.

The Embassy of Japan in the UK commented:

“The governments of both Japan and the United Kingdom are committed to cultivating a closer bilateral relationship between their citizens and promoting mutual understanding between the two countries.”

Japan and UK Confirm Working Holiday Visa Agreement

Japan and UK Working Holiday Scheme

This expansion is part of the Hiroshima Accord, aiming to boost cooperation in various sectors, including the economy and security.

The formalization of this agreement in Tokyo reflects the shared goal of cultivating closer bilateral relationships and enhancing mutual understanding between the people of Japan and the UK.

Japan’s quota will experience a sixfold increase from 1,000 to 6,000 visas, while the UK’s quota will quadruple from 1,500 to 6,000.

Who Will this New Agreement Attract?

The enhanced working holiday program targets young people aged 18 to 30, allowing them to live in the other country for up to 2 years.

With the increased quota, many more young individuals will have the opportunity to experience a different culture, improve language skills, and build international connections.

The program has been popular, with the number of applicants often exceeding available visas, indicating a high demand for such cultural and educational exchanges.

Working Holiday Visa Primarily for Work

Despite its name, the working holiday visa primarily focuses on the “holiday” aspect. The program encourages participants to explore and experience the host country, with work being a secondary objective to support their travel expenses.

This visa is not intended for those who primarily seek employment. Participants are advised to secure appropriate insurance and understand that the visa does not allow for an extension of stay beyond the 2-year period.

The Japanese Embassy in the UK stated:

“This program is not designed for persons who mainly intend to work. The applicant’s primary purpose of stay should be to “holiday” in Japan. Those who intend primarily to work cannot apply for this visa.”

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