Arrival Information for 2020 MEXT Scholarship Students

The information below is for the MEXT scholarship students.                         Updated on : November 12

We have opened our website on Sep. 18th, 2020.
International Education Section of Student Exchange Division, Tohoku University is making arrival support for 2020 MEXT scholarship students. Please check this website frequently as we will update in near future. Thank you for your kind understanding!


Please rigorously implement infection prevention, such as wearing masks, disinfecting hands, avoiding the "3Cs" etc.

Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare
Avoid the “Three Cs”!


Getting Started~Overall Flow

Step Embassy Recommendation University Recommendation Note

Obtain a Japanese Government (MEXT) Scholarship Certificate

*You will receive the certificate from the department office.


Apply for a visa:

After the Embassy of Japan etc. in your country contacts you,

apply for and obtain a visa.



Arrange airline tickets:

The Embassy of Japan will contact you and arrange your flight ticket.

Arrange airline tickets:

The University will contact you and arrange your flight ticket.


Confirm flight, prepare for the departure

*Check your itinerary and make sure you have everything you need for the trip.


Undergo COVID-19 test (PCR test etc. in your own country):

Undergo a COVID-19 test within 72 hours of departure and

obtain a negative test result in the required format.

*If your result is positive, you cannot depart for Japan.


Arrival in Japan:

Undergo a COVID-19 test at the airport of your arrival in Japan.

MEXT will bear the cost of the airline ticket.




After leaving the airport, go to the hotel where you will quarantine.

*You will stay at a hotel near your airport of arrival for 14 days, counting from the day after your arrival in Japan (15 nights, 16 days).

*The university will make the hotel arrangements. You do not have to make reservations.


Arrange housing (apartment):

Please apply for university housing via the relevant department staff.

*Department office will contact you with instructions regarding university dormitories. If you wish to stay at a dormitory, please follow them.

*It is extremely difficult to arrange/lease an apartment before coming to Japan. They are also expensive. We therefore recommend that you stay at a university dormitory.


Travel to Sendai:

Go to Tokyo Station by train etc. after leaving your hotel.

From Tokyo Station, take the Tohoku Shinkansen to Sendai Station.

*Student Exchange Division will arrange all the tickets.

*You will receive them at the hotel while you are staying.


Travel to your housing:

*Those staying at Tohoku University housing must complete the moving-in procedures before moving in.

Beginning your Studies at Tohoku University!

You will be contacted later by your department at Tohoku University about the following.

◆ Arrangements necessary to receive scholarship money:

Resident Registration, opening a bank account, submitting airline ticket stubs, enrollment confirmation

◆ Other procedures: Enrollment procedures, class registration etc.

Note: The above information is current as of September 28. It may change hereafter.

Note: Expenses borne by each student will vary from person to person.



Departure Preparations

Below is what you need to do before you leave your country of origin.

Visa Application

After the Embassy of Japan etc. in your country contacts you, apply for and obtain a visa.
* Department office will send university-recommended scholarship students a Japanese Government (MEXT) Scholarship Certificate. We will mail the original copy of the certificate to you as well as send you a pdf version of the certificate by email. The documents required for visa applications may differ depending on the embassy. Please follow the embassy's instructions.

Flight Arrangement

* MEXT will specify the schedule and route of travel and issue an air ticket. The ticket will be an economy class air ticket from the international airport nearest the student's residence (generally within the student's country of nationality) to an international airport in Japan commonly used to travel to the host university.

* In general, you must bear all transportation costs from their residence to the nearest international airport, airport taxes, airport fees, special travel taxes, transportation expenses within Japan and baggage/shipping fees.

* Please wait to arrange your flight until you hear from the university or Japanese mission/embassy. You will definitely be contacted. Please do not reserve your ticket before then. We will contact each student in turn. Please look into airport/luggage fees and rules on travel to Japan yourself.

COVID-19 test

◆Those who need to take a COVID-19 testhttps://www.mofa.go.jp/ca/fna/page4e_001053.html

If you are departing from one of the countries/regions listed at above URL under "1. Denial of permission to entry",

* You must, at your own expense, undergo a COVID-19 test within 72 hours before departing for Japan and obtain proof of a negative result. Proof of a negative COVID-19 test result will be required to enter Japan. The certificate must be in the specified format. Please be sure to use it. 

* Before departing, please report your test result to Tohoku University immediately by the form below. Include an image of your negative test certificate.

COVID-19 Test Result Form


◆Those who do NOT need to take a COVID-19 testhttps://www.mofa.go.jp/ca/fna/page4e_001053.html

If you are NOT departing from one of the countries/regions listed at above URL under "1. Denial of permission to entry",

* You are not required to undergo a COVID-19 test both before departing for Japan and upon your arrival in Japan. Just in case, please make sure to double-check with the embassy of Japan in your country beforehand.

* Countries may be added to, or removed from, this list hereafter, so please check the above URL for the latest information when planning your trip.


* MEXT states that students cannot bring family members with them to Japan. Please come to Japan by yourself.

* In addition to items and clothes you will need for your daily life/studies in Japan, please make sure to bring your own thermometer, masks, hand sanitizer, sanitary products etc. (about a month's supply). Please also bring a Wi-Fi capable device such as a smartphone, laptop PC, etc. (You will be able to use Wi-Fi in the hotel room. You will need a Wi-Fi device to communicate with the university during your stay there.)

* Scholarship payments will be made 1 to 1.5 months after your arrival in Japan. Please bring about USD 2,000 to cover living expenses until then.

* For information on Japan (Sendai), please check the TU Support website

Cancellation fees : If you are unable to come to Japan due to the result of a PCR test conducted within 72 hours before your departure or if you are unable to enter Japan due to some other reason upon arrival at an airport in Japan, you will be responsible for cancellation fees for your flight and hotel.

Checklist before your departure

Here are things that you need to make a final check.

□ Double check your flight date and time.
□ Keep all the following documents etc. with you on the plane.
 ・E-ticket (Please print out two copies of the ticket.)
 ・Certificate of negative COVID-19 test (excludes countries where it is not required to enter Japan)
  →Does the certificate use the REQUIRED FORM?(https://www.mofa.go.jp/mofaj/files/100078393.docx)
  →Did you submit the report form for your negative result to Tohoku University? (A digital copy of your certificate is required.)
□ Prepare your own thermometer, masks, hand sanitizer, sanitary products etc. (about a month's supply).
□ Prepare a Wi-Fi capable device such as a smartphone, laptop PC, etc.
□ Bring Cash (approx. USD 2,000).
□ If needed, prepare prescriptions for any medications you are taking.

Quarantine at the Airport

Medical Questionnaire

* Fill out the medical questionnaire in the airplane or upon arrival at the airport.
You need to enter the "Mobile phone number while in Japan" and "Place/Period of Staying in Japan" in the questionnaire and we will will be informing  you necessary information after your flight schedule is confirmed. For your reference, you can see the sample form and know how to fill it out.

COVID-19 test

* Upon entering Japan, you must undergo a another COVID-19 test at the airport at which you arrived. It may take a very long time from obtaining the test result to completing customs/immigration procedures. Please be patient. See here for details.
* Please report your test result from the airport in Japan to Tohoku University immediately by the form below.
Include an image of your negative test result.

COVID-19 Test Result Form

Entering Japan and Going to the Hotel

Entering Japan

* Proof of a negative COVID-19 test certificate from your country of nationality will be required to enter Japan.

* At the arrival gate, a staff from Tohoku University's appointed travel agency holding a signboard that says "MEXT" will be waiting for you. Please be sure to meet with the staff. 

* Staff from Tohoku University's appointed travel agency will help with the hotel arrangements. You will travel from the airport to the hotel by charter bus. Travel agency staff will guide you.

* Before going to the hotel, please exchange your money at the airport.

Going to the Hotel

* Before coming to Tohoku University (Sendai), you will quarantine at a hotel near the airport. The quarantine period is 15 nights, 16 days. (The quarantine period is calculated from the day after you arrive in Japan.)
The university will make the hotel arrangements. You do not have to make reservations.

* MEXT plans to provide a housing stipend (full hotel fees) after students arrive in Sendai. Therefore you do not need to pay hotel fees there.


* You will have to submit your used boarding pass to the university. Please keep it in a safe place.

* All students will be enrolled in overseas travel insurance. The university will cover the fees. It will be valid for 21 days from your arrival.

Quarantine at the Hotel

* MEXT asks that you please rigorously observe the following instructions while staying at the hotel: → Do not leave the hotel.
→ Do not leave your room, except for essential reasons.
→ Do not use the hotel's public spaces, lounges, etc., or enter other guests' rooms.
→ You may use the tour desk, convenience store etc. for shopping and laundry.

* MEXT's instructions state that students are not to go to restaurants during their quarantine. Please obtain meals at a convenience store or order room service. You must pay for meals yourself at the hotel.

* Please take COVID-19 precautions at the hotel. Tohoku University will provide masks and hand sanitizer for use at the hotel.

* While staying at the hotel, take your temperature twice a day and monitor your health. Report the results to the hotel staff. (A detailed explanation will be given when you check in.)

* If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the hotel tour desk or Tohoku University.

End of Quarantine, Coming to Sendai

* After the quarantine period is over, you will come to Tohoku University (Sendai). Our travel agency will arrange your ground transportation (for the trip to Sendai) and you must pay for travel within Japan yourself. We will ask the travel agency to allow payment of fees for the travel to Sendai after the first scholarship payment. To ensure a quick and safe journey, all students will travel by Airport Limousine and bullet train. The travel agency staff will give you your tickets at the hotel while you are staying.

* Please be sure to wear a mask while traveling.  Use hand sanitizer while on trains and taxis as well. Please eat before you board the train or taxi. Do not eat while riding in vehicles.

* After arriving at Sendai Station, you will go to your housing.
If you are staying at a dormitory, you will need the Residence Permit you obtained in advance.

* You will register as a resident of Sendai and open a Japan Post Bank account.

* You will undergo enrollment procedures at the university. (University staff will give you instructions.)

* Submit your ticket stubs, boarding pass etc. to the university. (University staff will give you instructions.)


From the Hotel to Sendai (MIYAGI Pref.) Transportation from Narita airport to Sendai station

Ground transportation


Updated on Nov.12

1. Take the free shuttle bus from the hotel and get off at Narita Airport Terminal.

 Check at the tour desk for the boarding location and departure time of the shuttle bus.
2.【Embassy Recommendation】:Take the limousine bus from Narita Airport Terminal 2 Bus stop

 and get off at Tokyo Station Yaesu North Exit Tekko Building. It’s recommended to take the limousine

 bus that departs at 10:20 am and arrives at Tokyo Station at 12:05 pm.(See here for details)

   【University Recommendation】:Take the limousine bus from Narita Airport Terminal 1 South Exit

 Bus stop and get off at Tokyo Station Yaesu North Exit Tekko Building. It’s recommended to take the

 limousine bus that departs at 10:25 am and arrives at Tokyo Station at 12:05 pm.(See here for details)
 *Board the bus that departs at 10:55 am at the latest as there may be heavy traffic on the way and

 you will need time to walk to Tokyo Station.
 ◆Airport Limousine Website: https://webservice.limousinebus.co.jp/web/en/Top.aspx
 ◆Narita Airport Bus Stop Map: https://www.narita-airport.jp/en/access/bus
3. Walk to Tokyo Station and get on the Tohoku Shinkansen(bullet train) from platform 20, 21, 22, or 23

 to Sendai Station. (See here for details)
 The Shinkansen scheduled to board: Hayabusa 25, departs Tokyo at 13:20 / arrives at Sendai at 14:52


Before Heading to Dormitory Get a Smart Card for Transport

We recommend you to get a Suica from a ticket machine (tap "Purchase new Suica" on the screen of a machine) or JR EAST Travel Service Center at JR Sendai Station and top up with approx. JPY 3,000 for starters, before heading to the dormitory. Suica is a smart card for transportation paying as you go for Sendai City Subway, Sendai City Bus and JR train, even for purchasing stuff at major convenience stores and drugstores.


From Sendai Station to Dormitory

You will have to arrange the transportation by yourself or follow the instructions from your department.

Student Exchange Division does not specify how to get to your dormitory, but please make sure to arrive at the dormitory by 17:00 at the latest.

See page 24 of the Pocket Guide for the details.

Train Route Planner


If you take a taxi from JR Sendai Station to get to your dormitory,  it would take about 15 - 30 minutes. The fare would be about JPY 2,000-4,000 but differ depending on the traffic condition. At JR Sendai Station, go down to the 1st floor to find a taxi stand, just outside of the station.

Useful Websites

Maps & Directions

- Pocket Guide

- TU support

- Bus & Subway Commuting Guide

- How to Use Sendai Subway

- How to Ride Sendai City Bus

- Directions to Campuses

- Interactive Campus Map


Campus Life

1. TU Campus Life
2. TU Computer Network Access Guideline
3. Medical Handbook
4. Sendai Living Guide (Hospital List)
5. Disaster Handbook (English, Chinese, Korean and Tagalog)
6. Disaster Handbook (English, Vietnamese, Nepali and Indonesian)
7. Traffic Safety Guidelines
8. Tips for Avoiding Cyber Crime
9. Aeon Sendai - Supermarket (Downtown)
10. Gyomu Super - Supermarket (Downtown, Halal food available)



Arrangement & Inquiries (Please put your name in the email subject.):
International Education Section, Student Exchange Division
Hours: 9:00 am-17:00 pm, Mon-Fri
Counter #6-B, 2nd floor, Education and Student Support Center (A01 on the map), Kawauchi Campus,
41 Kawauchi, Aoba-ku, Sendai, Miyagi, 980-8576 Japan
Tel: +81 (0)22 795 7817
E-mail: mext-tohoku@grp.tohoku.ac.jp