Working holiday program open to Japanese nationals

What is the working holiday programme (WHP)?

This is an international exchange programme which allows citizens from the participating countries (USA, Argentina, Hongkong, New Zeeland Canada, Uruguay, Australia, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan) to live and work in a country for a maximum period of one year. 

Although formally the emphasis must lie on cultural exchange, one is allowed to work unrestricted on the labour market for the duration of the permit. 

Any specific requirements?

The most important general requirement is that the scheme is only open to persons between 18 and 30. 

For Japan there is also a quota of 200 participants per year. 

How does it work?

A Japanese national must first pre-register her/himself at the Dutch embassy in Tokyo. Within 90 days of this pre-registration an application for the permit must lodged here in the Netherlands at the Immigration service. 

And after the year is over?

The permit has a one year maximum and is not extendable. But luckily a Japanese can quite easily obtain residence under the Dutch Japanese Friendship Treaty


Due to the global Covid-19 pandemic the WHP with Japan has been suspended until further notice. Once the situation has stabilized the WHP with Japan will be resumed. 

What next?

If you want to explore your options under the working holiday program some more, you can reach out to one of the experts of Alt Attorneys. You can reach us at +31206161467, or by email We are happy to help!