The Covid-19 pandemic has affected global tourism badly. Normally, many tourists would have flock to Japan during the month of April to see the cherry blossoms. Sadly, it doesn’t happen this year.
The country has reported a 99.9% drop in tourism in the month of April 2020 as compared to the same period of last year. There are only 2,900 foreign tourists in April 2020, according to the statistic shared by the Japan National Tourism Organization.
Extraordinary times require extraordinary measures. In order to boost the tourism, the Japan National Tourism Organization came up with a plan that is expected to cost 1.35 trillion yen (RM54.5 billion).
The agency intends to launch the plan once the Covid-19 outbreak is under control. The amount of money will be spent to provide discounted accommodation, day trips, promotions at souvenir shops, restaurants, and tourist hotspots.
For example, as part of their “Go To Travel” campaign, coupons that halve tour expenses (including accommodation, local products, food and beverages, facilities) are being considered. However, the value of such subsidies is capped at 20,000 yen (about RM808) per night per person.
While, part of the budget will also be spent on improving tourist experiences such as supporting cashless payment, online reservations, resuming air travels to Japan, and other campaigns and events.
On May 21, the Prime Minister of Japan announced that the country is lifting the state of emergency for Osaka, Kyoto and Hyogo. The state of emergency in Tokyo and the northern prefecture of Hokkaido may be lifted next week as well.
Source : Kyodo News