Japan Visa denied in Riyadh, approved in Manila

This is an update about my Japan visa application. On my previous blog I have discussed how i was denied visa when I applied directly at Japan Embassy in Riyadh. After googling for blogs about “Japan Visa denied”, I found this blog http://sarisaringisip.blogspot.com” which is very helpful and inspiring. I tried my luck in Manila and decided to submit my appeal/reapplication through “Friendship Tours and Resorts Inc.” located at Dusit Thani Hotel in Makati City. This Agency is giving the best customer service based from so many good reviews. Staff are respectful, polite and will advice applicants the best possible ways to get visa approval, though not guaranteed. I only knew this agency through a blog, I wasn’t paid by them in any way but i highly recommend their services.

Japan visa refusal stamp

Documents required in Manila:

  1. I prepared new set of the same documents which I had submitted in Riyadh as stated on my previous blog (please read my first blog for reference) but my COE etc. was addressed now at Japan Embassy Manila and I’ve added the following:
  2. From my Guarantor – Invitation letter, Guarantee letter, family registration, Tax certificate, daily itinerary, all original docs came from Japan.
  3. Cover Letter & Explanation/Appeal Letter – I submitted 4 pages explanation of the following: The possible reason why I was denied visa in Riyadh, why I need to reapply in Manila, why they should approve my visa application, why I must go back to Riyadh after my vacation and the negative effects if I don’t return after my trip. Also I have explained why I cannot submit an ITR (because I’m an OFW) and bank certificate (because only bank statement is being provided in KSA). 

Personal background during my application in Manila:

  • I had been issued Japan visa (visiting relatives) in Riyadh in 2013 and visited Japan for 10 days, with Japanese guarantor
  • I travel 3-4 times per year for tourism/vacation from Riyadh to cities/countries of my choice
  • I had traveled to total of 23 countries in the last 10 years, including 6 out of 7 member countries of G7 in the last 3 years
  • have an existing valid multiple-entry visas 10 yrs US, 1 yr Australia and 5 yrs Canada, with used 4 Schengen visas, 1 UK visa and 1 Japan visa
  • An OFW in Saudi Arabia for 11 years (all visas issued in Riyadh)
  • I applied my latest Japan Visa during my vacation in Manila
  • 1st Japan visa for Visiting Relatives approved in 2013 in Riyadh, 2nd Japan visa for Sightseeing/Tourism denied in Nov2017 in Riyadh, 3rd Japan visa for Visiting Relatives approved in Dec2017 in Manila
  • I reapplied in Manila after 1 month from being denied visa in Riyadh
  • I did not submit plane tickets to Japan when i applied in Manila
  • it only took 2 working days to issue my Japan visa in Manila via FriendshipTours
Japan visa label

Lesson learned:

  • having an existing visas and consistent travel history from richer Western countries does not guarantee automatic Japan visa approval
  • having travel history to Japan with used Japan visa does not always guarantee automatic Japan visa approval for your next visa application
  • having more money in the bank does not guarantee visa approval as others even with low cash balance still gets visa approval
  • the statement published by Japan Embassy and foreign affairs websites “Japan relaxes visas for Filipinos” could only be applicable to a very specific individuals and may not be applicable to many
  • many first time travelers are being granted visas and at the same time many well-traveled individuals still getting denied visa
  • Japan is the only country i knew which admittedly will never disclose reasons of visa refusal

12 thoughts on “Japan Visa denied in Riyadh, approved in Manila

  1. When I read your blog, I realized that there is no sure way to be approved and Japan needs to state the reason for denial, otherwise, I think they have to shorten the waiting period for reapplication. The good thing for them is they accept Japan visa appeals. Now, congrats for being approved to travel again in Japan! Thank you also for sharing your story.


    1. I agree they should provide clear basis for denying visas like Schengen, UK Canada etc visas they provide visa refusal letter. Also they should remove the statement “Japan visa relaxation for Filipinos” as it is not really the case.


  2. Hello,

    Your blog is really helpful and informative. I would like to ask if I can have a sample of your appeal for visa application in Japan. I’m helping a friend who’s coming with me in Japan. She is working in Dubai and her visa application was denied and we can’t figure out the reason. Thank you in advance!


    1. Actually you can make it your own, no template and no limit in pages. But to be precise like what i did, I titled my letter as “Letter of Appeal” Then I discussed the following: 1st paragraph, a little intro about yourself, 2nd paragraph, put the reason you think why they refused your visa in Dubai and why you believe it is a mistake. 3rd paragraph, tell them the reasons why they should approve your appeal/visa reapplication. 4th paragraph, tell them why you need to comeback to Dubai after your trip. Mine took 4 pages because I specified the evidences for my statements and declaration in details. I attached all the documents I’ve mentioned in my appeal to support it. Good luck!


  3. Hello! Thanks to Ms. Joen for redirecting me to your blog Sir. Let me introduce myself, I am Jona, an OFW in Dubai UAE.
    I and my friend just applied for Japan Visa last February 13, 2018 and got the result in February 18, and it was DENIED. It was so sad that we’ve got denied thinking that we submitted all the necessary requirements. Our tour is supposed to be on March 13-17, 2018.
    We’re planning to reapply in Manila on March 6, do you think it is possible to reapply in that short period of time?

    I hope you could help me with this as I really want to go to Japan…….

    Thank you Sir!


    1. Hi Jona, if u believe that the refusal is unjustified, u can insist to reapply in Manila. I recommend thru “Friendship Tours” in Dusit Thani Hotel. Just present an appeal/reconsideration letter and provide more than complete set of supporting documents. I’ve read so many cases of Japan denying visas for overseas Filipinos and it’s so unfair that they never disclose reason of refusal even if u submitted all required supporting documents. 5 working days is required to process visa in Manila. Good luck.


  4. Hi! We are planning to do the same when we re-apply for a Japan visa, that is, to write a letter of appeal to the embassy and submit it to Friendship Tours. Actually, it was my daughter’s application that got denied. It was denied this June. But my daughter has an event to attend to in August. So she cannot wait for another 6 months to re-apply. My daughter is still a student, she’s graduating from college this school year. We submitted her application in reli tours with her birth certificate, a 4D-3N itinerary, a copy of her accommodation, guarantee letter from me and our bank certificates. I am a housewife so i don’t have an ITR. And by the way, my daughter has an old japan visa issued 2 yrs ago from our first travel to japan. So i was confident that she could get another one, but i was wrong. I’ve read from another blog that the embassy is strict when it comes to women travelling alone in japan. For safety reasons. And maybe, the embassy doubted her travel to japan that she might apply for a job and won’t come back anymore. On her next application, she will write a letter of appeal stating that she will be back in Manila to finish her studies. And this time, she will be travelling with me since i already have a 5-yr multiple entry japan visa. Do you think she will have a chance to grant a visa?


    1. this is so alarming, u should try to contact Japan Embassy if you can appeal. Japan is constantly denying visas to genuine travelers and they have to justify it in an official statement.


  5. very helful for your blog, can i ask a question last july 31,2018 when i collect my new passport and attach the old ne because my working visa i there in dubai for the japan visa, they denied my application, but i already visit tokyo twice and i have also 2 schengen visa i visited 5 country in europe and twice in maldives, can we re-apply bynthis month in manila because im going for 10 days vacation end of this month,
    pls reply, thank you in advance.


    1. send an email and phone Japan Embassy and demand them to justify the reason of refusal. in Manila you can try to apply if u want but i heard that very few nowadays are given visa after appeal. Japan should answer this alarming rate of visa refusal to genuine travelers. They should change the qualification for multiple entry visa (for persons with travel history to G7 countries) since they themselves are not following their own set of eligibility.


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