Japan is prepared to issue digital nomad visas starting in late March 2024. Applicants must earn more than 10 million Japanese yen ($68,300) annuallyor more at the time of application. Applicants do not need to be employed by a different company to be eligible for this offer as it is open to self-employed and freelance individuals.
Japan is a true haven for remote workers, offering a plethora of tourist destinations, modern technology, and an affordable cost of living.
Covered countries and criteria
Candidates for the Japan digital nomad visa must be citizens of a nation that has a tax treaty with Japan or be granted visa exemption. The United States of America, Australia, and Singapore are a few of the 49 nations and territories on this list. Applicants can now live and work remotely in Japan for six months after being approved, as opposed to the 90 days that visa-free short-term stays currently allow. Spouses and kids are permitted to travel with those digital nomads.
It is significant to remember that remote workers holding a digital nomad visa for Japan will not be regarded as citizens of the nation and will not be permitted to apply for a resident certificate or rent long-term housing.
Each country has its own set of regulations regarding the digital nomad visa program, including length of stay. For example, South Korea permits a two-year stay, while Taiwan allows digital nomads to stay for three years.
Global digital nomad movement
Globally, over 35 million individuals identify as digital nomads, contributing an economic impact of approximately $787 billion, as reported by the U.S.-based travel site A Brother Abroad.
The trend towards living abroad and working remotely is gaining popularity. Governments worldwide are promoting this shift to enhance tourism and stimulate local innovation.
Presently, more than 50 countries offer digital nomad visas, with Japan among those planning to introduce similar programs, although the duration of stay varies by country, ranging from two to three years, with possibilities for permanent residency in some cases.
Best places for digital nomads in Japan
Fukuoka is Japan’s emerging hotspot for digital nomads.
In October 2023, Fukuoka drew digital nomads worldwide to a promotional event which turned out to be very successful and brought a lot of attention to this beach town.
The event was offering co-working spaces in hotels and opportunities for cultural exchanges with locals, such as plant potting and traditional dance lessons, underlining the city’s vibrant energy and global outreach efforts led by city official Yokoyama Yuichi.
Nomadlist.com’s analysis of city check-ins over the last two years reveals significant growth in remote working populations, particularly in Tokyo. In 2022, Tokyo saw a 369% increase in remote workers, followed by a 252% increase last year, which made it the fastest-growing digital nomad destination in 2023.
Tokyo’s appeal as a remote work center is attributed to its unique combination of creative architecture, historical sites, vibrant culture, and culinary excellence.
Okinawa, with its serene beaches, subtropical climate, and rich cultural heritage, is becoming an attractive destination for digital nomads seeking a balance between work and leisure.
The island offers a relaxed lifestyle complemented by modern amenities and high-speed internet, making it an ideal setting for remote work.
Furthermore, Okinawa’s welcoming community and the abundance of coworking spaces cater to the needs of digital professionals looking for a blend of productivity and inspiration.