Guide to JASSO Student Loans in Japan: How and Where to Apply

You may be wondering how and where to apply for student loans in Japan. Did you know that Japan Student Services Organization (JASSO) provides student loans for both international and Japanese students? In this blog, Smiles will show you where and how to apply for student loans in Japan, mainly through JASSO. The information is not widely available in English, so we hope this blog will help you understand the process.

Guide to JASSO Student Loans in Japan: How and where to apply

Table of Contents

What are JASSO student loans?

Japan Student Services Organization (JASSO) offers financial assistance programs “provided by the Japan Scholarship Foundation; the support programs for international students provided by the Association of International Education, Japan; the Center for Domestic and Foreign Students; the International Students Institute; the Kansai International Students Institute; and the scholarship programs for international students and the student support programs provided by the government.” In terms of student loans through JASSO, the amount, term and interest rate will depend on an applicant’s financial background.

Must be one of the following in order to qualify: 

  • Be a prospective high school graduate
  • Be a high school graduate (within 2 years after graduation)
  • Be in one of the following statuses:
    • Passed the examination that’s the same level as the exam for senior high school graduation
    • Passed JASSO-required subjects
    • Planning to take the examination for senior high school graduation

General criteria (1 or 2):

  1. Parent/guardian’s annual income should show that it can support JASSO’s loan amount
  2. Family who does not pay residential tax, those who are under government life support (seikatsu hogo) or those who need economical support
ekaterina bolovtsova photo student loans
Photo by Ekaterina Bolovtsova

Where to apply for JASSO student loans

The application guide pamphlet will be given to a student from their high school if one shows their interest in JASSO’s student loan program. In the pamphlet, there will be forms that will need to be filled out as well as for instructions on the application process. Please note that all of the information is only available in Japanese.

How to apply for JASSO student loans

  1. Prepare the following documents/information: 
  • Application confirmation form
  • My Number Card submission form
    • You will need your My Number information as well as your parent(s)/guardian’s My Number information
  • Gather information on your financial history as well as your parent(s)/guardian’s financial history

     2. Fill out three forms

    • Application confirmation form (hard copy)
    • My Number Card submission form (hard copy)
    • Online Scholar Net application form

    3. Submit the Scholar Net application online and submit the hard copy forms to the high school (student’s teacher or school office).

At Smiles, we understand that it can be difficult to find student loan options in Japan. Unfortunately, the options are minimal, but they do exist. We hope that the information we provided will help you financially with your education in Japan. If you know of any programs or tips related to financial support for education, please feel free to let us know. Stay tuned on Smiles Blogs as we’ll prepare articles about scholarship opportunities for international and Japanese students in Japan.

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