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Residence status change from working visa to tourist visa

Does anyone know whether it is possible to convert a business working visa to a temporary visitor visa (tourist visa) without leaving Japan. That is I want to surrender my Residence Card and stay a bit longer in Japan as a visitor. What is required to ‘apply’ to surrender my residence status?

I will terminate my employment with a Japanese company soon, and I will be employed by a Hong Kong company immediately after that. However rather than going to HK straightaway, I would like to stay in Japan for 6-8 more weeks as a tourist traveling around.

My business visa expiry date is well into 2022 so it doesn’t come into consideration. During normal times, I could easily exit the country and come back as a tourist, obviously this isn’t possible now due to COVID.

I can’t answer your question, but I’m wondering why you want to change your status. Leaving the country and coming back in is usually for switching from temporary visitor status to another status. The only possible advantages I could see for a change of status are:

  1. Access to some cheap rail passes (although the domestic deals are almost as good at the moment)
  2. Trying to convince the government that you’re not a resident to reduce your tax burden.

When you do your tax return, they ask you about your visa status, but they’re more interested in the number of days that you are in the country. If you already have tax residency in Japan and you’re in the country for more than 6 months of the year, they’ll count you as a tax resident irrespective of your visa.

If tax is the reason, I’d recommend getting some tax advice before you go to the trouble of trying to change your visa.

Forgive me if I’ve missed another reason why you might want to change your status.