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It is Finally Announced!
Prime Minister, Mr. Kishida announced on Thursday (9/22) that Japan would significantly relax the borders by allowing visa-free individual travelers to Japan and lifting the limit of the number of people inbound to Japan, which will start from October 11. On the same day, the government will launch a tourism support measure “National Travel Discount (National Travel Support)” and “Event Discount” that is applicable nationally.
*Visa-free for individual travelers are for those who was eligible to enter Japan without visa just like before the pandemic.
Travel Offers To Expect This Autumn!
The travel support offers a 40% discount on travel costs, up to a maximum of 8,000 yen/person per night for a trip using public transportation (train/subway, bus, airplane, etc) and 5,000 yen for a trip other than that (without using public transportation or accommodation only), with local coupons that can be used at restaurants, souvenir shops, etc worth 3,000 yen on weekdays and 1,000 yen on weekends.
Tourism, entertainment, and other industries are struggling to survive cause of the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, and this announcement should bring vibes to not only industries but also to international travelers that are waiting to visit Japan.
Will The Breaking Relaxing Border Bring International Tourists Back to Japan?
Japan has been allowing inbound tourists in June, starting with those on packaged tours (with a guide), followed by removing the requirement to get a pre-departure negative PCR test (only for those vaccinated three times) and allowing non-guided tours who had booked flights and hotels through registered travel agencies in September. Unfortunately, these measures have been unpopular among many foreigners who want to have freedom in traveling.
Different from the previous, the announcement to fully reopen the border on Thursday, brings excitement vibes among foreigners who are eagerly vising Japan. Positive feedback such as “At last!”, “Finally! See you soon Japan!” are noticed easily. while seems some still having dissatisfied with how slowly Japan reopens its border compared to other countries and how they are struggling to obtain the visa.
Should We Still Wear a Mask?
Japan is known as the most strict country in allowing inbound among the G7 countries. When people in other countries stop wearing a mask or wearing a mask only in indoor facilities, most people in Japan still wear masks anytime anywhere, despite the recommendation from Japan’s government to take off the mask outside especially during the humid summer. In addition to hotels and other accommodation facilities are now allowed to refuse customers who come without masks or refuse to wear a mask.
If you are planning to come to Japan this autumn/winter following the breaking announcement, we recommend making sure to wear a mask and take it off when you are outside if you are not talking or with nobody around you.