That’s right, you heard me correctly. Japan will pay for your vacation as long as you come to Japan. Too good to be true right? Thankfully for us, this amazing country is willing to pay for up to half of your vacation this summer. This is one of the countries that I am most excited to have to open up for travel and even better if they are willing to pay for part of everyone’s travel.
During the coronavirus pandemic, Japan has seen a decrease in tourism by 99%. Japan needs tourism to rebound this summer so its economy can get started again. Other governments are considering offering to help pay for people to begin traveling. The travel industry is such a huge piece of many countries’ economies and it has been devastated over the last couple of months.
To achieve this, the Japanese tourism department has announced a $12.5 billion plan to help pay for tourists’ travel expenses. This announcement was made by Hiroshi Tabata who is the head of the tourism agency for the Japanese government. Let’s dig in and talk a little more about how Japan will pay for your vacation.
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Why will Japan pay for your vacation
Japan was planning on one of the largest scaled events to take place this summer. As we all know, the Olympics were supposed to be held in Tokyo starting this July. The last Olympics that were held in Tokyo Japan were in 1964. The Olympics alone bring in megabucks for cities.
In preparation for the Olympics, Japan spent over $12.6 billion to prepare the city of Tokyo. They willingly put this money into their city in hopes the return would be big.
The economic impact of the Olympics being canceled is huge and endless. It is so rare for the Olympics to be canceled, the last time this happened was during World War II in 1940.
Now that the Olympics have been postponed until the next year 2021, the city of Tokyo and the country are going to take a huge hit. There is a lot at stake for the city of Tokyo this year including a lot of large hotels that are sitting empty and ready to host tourists. Japan is hoping to bring in just a small percentage of the money they usually earn from tourism through this program.
Not Just The Olympics
It’s not just the Olympics that are causing Japan to lose a lot of money on tourism. Tourism in Japan has been on the rise for the past 5 years. Japan hosted a record number of tourists in 2019. They welcomed over 31.9 million tourists throughout the year. Those tourists spent over $41.2 billion while in Japan.
Since the coronavirus has taken over many countries tourism has come to a standstill. So imagine all the incoming people and money stopping almost overnight. Japan is not alone in this but they are one of the first to do something about it.
The Japanese Tourism Board announced in March that tourists entering the country were down by 99%. Japan was one of the last countries to close their borders to tourists. Hoping they could control the virus without needing to close the country. They closed their borders in April of this year and had only welcomed 2,900 visitors in that month. They have not been able to welcome any tourists since April.
As you can see Japan’s economy needs tourism to get started again. With foreign spending making up 18% of Japan’s GDP in 2018, the economy needs to get restarted.
Large and small businesses have become reliant on tourism. These businesses can only survive for a short time without any incoming tourists in the country. Japan is eager to open its borders as soon as it is safe from coronavirus this is needed to protect large and small local businesses.
When will Japan open its borders?
That is the question weighing on everyone’s minds. When can we travel again? Japan in particular has been battling this question, when and how to re-open its borders. And of course when will Japan pay for your vacation?
Countries such as South Korea and Taiwan that surround Japan are already easing their borders and asking Japan to do the same. They have even asked Japan to open their borders between just a few countries to boost all of their economies.
Hence they are creating a travel bubble between low-risk countries. Australia and New Zealand are considering doing the same to slowly increase travel between the two nations.
Travel bubbles may become the future of international travel. This lowers the risk of coronavirus by allowing free travel between a few countries rather than opening borders to all countries.
However, the Japanese government is still reluctant to quickly re-open its borders even with a travel bubble. The Foreign Minister, Toshimitsu Motegi, said in a news conference that it was necessary for the Japanese to control the outbreak before they re-open their borders to any foreigners.
Domestic travel will have first dibs on free vacations
That being said, Hiroshi Tabata, head of tourism announced that they are hopeful this new tourism program will first help boost domestic travel first. Allowing the Japanese to feel safe again and begin traveling before the borders are open. The Tourism Committee in Japan is hopeful that Japan will re-open its borders by July 1st of this year.
So if you are in the midst of planning a late summer or early fall trip, Japan may be just the place for you. Why not let Japan pay for part of your vacation? My favorite time to visit Japan is in the fall which is perfect timing this year to take advantage of this offer.
You can take advantage of some ways that Japan will pay for your vacation now
Japan Airlines is offering free domestic flights to foreign tourists that are traveling between July and September of this year. Japan airlines are giving away 50,000 free domestic flights. This will is on a first come first serve basis. This will allow you to get from Tokyo to some of the other Japanese islands for no cost at all.
Take a look at Japan Airline’s website here for more information on how to take advantage of this unbelievable offer. Take advantage of this as Japan Airlines will help pay for you to vacation.
Best places to visit in Japan
Japan has so many beautiful places to see, it’s hard to narrow it down. Since Japan Airlines is offering free domestic flights, you should try to see more than one city.
Tokyo is of course the largest city and you will most likely fly into Tokyo but try to catch a domestic flight during your stay to see more of the awesome country. Here are a few of my favorite places to visit in Japan.
You could fly to Osaka and see the amazing castle, taste some epic sushi, and walk the river walk. The train is easy but why pay when you can fly for free right now.
You could also visit Kobe and taste some of the infamous beef that can’t be found anywhere else in the world. While you’re in Kobe, you can also visit one of the oldest temples in Japan. Kobe is a unique city and definitely worth a spot on your list.
Kyoto is also one of the best places to visit in Japan. Kyoto used to be the capital of Japan and still holds some of the most traditional Japanese buildings and customs in the country. You’ll have to fly into Osaka and either drive or take the train since Kyoto is close by and Osaka is the closest airport.
Tokyo is Japan’s largest city and is the largest city in the world with 37 million people living there. But don’t let that scare you away, Tokyo is divided up into smaller neighborhoods making it so you never feel like you are lost in a big city. Tokyo has so many great sites like their own Effiel Tower, Senso-Ji, and Tokyo Skytree. This city is one of a kind and must be seen at least once in your lifetime. The mix of modern megacity and tradition is not lost in Tokyo.
How Much Does It Cost To Go To Japan?
Traveling to Japan is not cheap and this is why you should take advantage of this great offer when it is released. If you are planning to go to Japan, make sure to have a budget in mind as you plan.
Japan is ranked as the 4th most expensive country in the world. It would be slightly less expensive than Switzerland and Iceland, but about the same as Singapore or South Korea.
On average a tourist spends around $121 USD per day in Japan. However if you are planning to stay downtown Tokyo, plan on spending more than that. On average a hotel room, downtown Tokyo will be more like $150-$200 USD per night.
Statistics say that the average tourist will spend around $30 per person on meals each day of your trip. I have found that I spend more than that when I have visited Japan.
I would say my average food has been around $50 USD per person per day for food. Mostly because I love to try so many things. You have to stop at a local Japanese bakery. They rival anything you can find in France. They are that good. But think of the savings if Japan will pay for you to visit.
For more information about how much it costs to travel to Japan and how to save money on your trip, take a look at this post for everything you need to know.
How much is Japan going to pay for your vacation?
No one knows the details of who much they will pay for your trip, yet. However if they follow the trend that Italy has set, they will pay up to 50% of your flight and one night of every three nights of your hotel room.
If you are traveling with multiple people and staying in Japan for a long time, these savings will really add up!
How to get Japan to pay for you to visit
As of right now, May 2020, the Japanese government has announced that this benefit will begin with domestic travelers. This means that it will not be available for foreigners at this time.
Check back here since we will update our information as soon as new information is released. We will tell you everything you need to know about how to take advantage of this awesome benefit.
Other places willing to help pay for your vacation
Sicily, Italy was the first place to announce that they are going to pay tourists to visit them. Sicily’s tourism industry announced that it lost over $1 billion dollars since March. Needless to say, they need tourists back as soon as possible.
Sicily has already announced its plan to attract tourists. They are willing to pay for half your flight and one night for every 3 nights of your hotel. They are also willing to pay for your tickets to local attractions including museums. This plan is going to cost around 50 million Euros. Visit Sicily’s website here for all the information you need.
Wrap up on Japan will pay for part of your vacation
Picture yourself indulging in Japanese culture at half the cost. Travel around Japan for free. Find your favorite part of Japan this year! Have you been to Japan? Would you like to take a vacation to Japan? Leave us a comment with your thoughts on Japan.
If you can’t make it to Japan, we have lots of great suggestions on The Safest Places To Travel this year. Find your dream vacation this year.