Although I hate flying for work reasons am a frequent flyer. I fly out every month to some destination and my passport has all the stamp art made by the immigration officers from various countries who feel these pages are their canvas to exploit where they merrily put the ink on the passport.
Every trip means I loose a page since there is an entry stamp and an exit stamp of Japan in addition to the stamps in the destination countries. I literally used to plead some immigration officers to put stamps close to each other so as to save on the pages. I was forced to go get a new passport last November since I eventually ran out of pages albeit I had a jumbo passport. If only there was a way to reduce the stamps and save the passport of the immigration officers artistic endeavors… Apparently there is a way. Use the AUTOMATED GATE at the airports in Japan. The MOJ (Ministry of Justice) touts this as a speedy immigration process, but for me this is just a way to save on my precious passport pages. Lets see what the MOJ says…
When you depart from or arrive at the airport on a business or sightseeing trip, you may have to wait in a long line at the landing or departure examination area crowded with people. In such cases, if you use a special lane for automated gates, you can go through landing and departure examination procedures smoothly. The automated gate system identifies users by passports and fingerprints and allows them to go through examination procedures automatically. You need only follow the operation instructions on the screen. User registration can be done quickly at the airport on the day of flight.
The process is dead simple, you do not need to prepare at all before hand. Just go to the airport, do your check in and security check. Once you are done with these two steps, next is immigration and at every international airport in Japan there is a automated gate registration system just next to the immigration gates.Fill in the form , takes not more than 2 minutes. You can actually also save time at the airport by printing out the form in advance at home and fill it in. Download the form from the Ministry of Justice Japan website here.
That done, submit the form to the registration desk near the automated gate system and your passport will be stamped the below to say that “you are exempt” from stamp. Stamp which says “exempt from stamp”, yeah whatever. One stamp, only once is OK if it saves two on every trip. Once done, go through the gate. Scan the passport, select reentry permit option and scan your fingerprint. The door opens. YAY!Overall benefits
- Go quickly through the gate rather than stand in a line (on a crowded day and until this system is not known to all)
- Save passport pages with no entry and exit stamps
- Less hassle on return and quick exits
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