Wednesday, 15 January 2014

Resident Card

Since July 2012, Japan changed their residency management system. Instead of the Alien Registration Card ("gaijin" card), new arrivals would be issued with a new Resident Card. Generally speaking some details are not directly written on the card itself but on an IC chip. Also, things like re-entry permit stamps are going to be a thing of the past.

Now I don't actually need to do this until my visa renewal, but considering what I'll be doing shortly I've decided to take the fun trip down to Shinagawa to get dat card! I arrived at the immigration office at about 11am. I was thinking I was getting there late but surprisingly it only took about 40 minutes! Maybe because it was a day predicted to snow everyone stayed away *booya!*

 You can pick up a form for the new card at the information desk as you walk in. They are actually in a tray so you don't even really need to line up. (If you LOSE your card you have to ask for another kind of form though). Around the corner you can take your photo at a photo booth for 700 yen. I did the photo myself in photoshop and printed it out for 30 yen instead :) Oh, bring a pen when you go. I had a hell of a time asking people to lend me a pen. No one helped me out ^$*#^!!

Once that's done go to the 2nd level D line which you can use the easy to follow guide line on the floor! If you leave Japan you don't have to pretend you lost it to keep the card. They'll actually let you keep it as a present but they punch a hole in the card to invalidate it. YAY!