License Reciprocity determines whether your valid home country license can be converted into a Japanese license without taking the written and driving test. All converters must have their driving history verified and pass a vision test, and those with licenses from places that are not exempt from testing will need to take a short written and driving test.
The general flow for conversion is as follows:
- Verification of driving history
- Vision test
- 10 question written test (available in English, some JETs will be exempt)
- Driving test on the examination center’s course (some JETs will be exempt)
- License issuance
For a more detailed explanation of what is required as well as information on how and when to make a reservation at the exam center, check out this English PDF shared by the prefectural police. The same information is available in Japanese, too. (If the PDF link isn’t working, you can access the same document at the top of the Japanese page.)
And if you’d like to learn more about the process in general, this website has everything you need to know about converting your home country license into a Japanese license. For even more advice and information, read this section written by Saga JETs who successfully converted their licenses.
But what if you don’t have a valid foreign license in the first place? One option for getting a Japanese drivers license is driving school. Learn more about what that entails on the Driving School page.