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Japan Reopening to Tourists on a Trial Basis: What You Need to Know


Written by MATCHA-NEWS


The Japan Travel Agency has announced that international tourists visiting the country on tours with predetermined itineraries will be accepted from May 2022. We explain the conditions and requirements that need to be fulfilled at this stage in order to visit Japan.

The Japan Tourism Agency announced through a press release on May 17 that Japan will start accepting international visitors from May 2022 on a trial basis. This is the first attempt to lift the travel restrictions imposed in March 2020 due to a surge in COVID-19 infections.

It is important to note that this first stage is a trial. The Japanese government will carefully monitor whether international visitors follow the host country's infection prevention measures, whether tour organizers and tourism facilities can deal with medical emergencies in case they occur, and whether an increase in viral infections can be effectively prevented.

Further steps toward lifting travel restrictions will be taken into consideration based on this trial period.

Conditions and Requirement for Traveling to Japan at This Stage

1. Japan will first open to visitors from the United States of America, Australia, Thailand, and Singapore.

These countries were selected based on their importance to Japan's tourism market and because they are not on the list of countries and regions designated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan and the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare of Japan as countries and regions with COVID-19 variants that require special border measures (Japanese). (*There are six designated countries on this list as of May 17, 2022: Egypt, Pakistan, Bulgaria, The Republic of South Africa, Laos, and Russia.)

2. Individuals who have been vaccinated at least three times against COVID-19 are eligible to enter Japan for tourism purposes.

3. Foreign travelers are allowed in Japan as participants in small-sized group tours with predetermined itineraries organized by Japanese travel companies. Tour conductors will accompany the groups.

4. The tours will be conducted only in regions that are not in a state of emergency at the time of the tour.

5. Tour participants are required to have private insurance for medical care.

Travel agencies that organize tours for foreign visitors, as well as accommodation and tourist facilities, have been given strict guidelines regarding the measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 infections. These guidelines have the role to ensure the safety of both tour participants and local communities.

While these conditions may seem restrictive for visitors, tour operators, and host facilities at this point, they are an important step toward lifting travel restrictions in the months to come.

Source: JTA press release from May 17, 2022.
Main image by Pixta

The information presented in this article is based on the time it was written. Note that there may be changes in the merchandise, services, and prices that have occurred after this article was published. Please contact the facility or facilities in this article directly before visiting.