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Transportation, tourism sectors hit hard by virus outbreak

52 Comments
By Tomoyuki Tachikawa

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Yup, the money flow has slowed way down during this time.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Why do all the adult have mask ,but the child do not ,you can contract Coronavirus from a restaurant plate,fork or spoon ,that someone else put in their mouth ,ATM or Vending machine that an infected person touched,the CDC say avoid in home contact with person ,if they are infected,i guess that mean toilets

-11 ( +2 / -13 )

@Yrral

and how exactly do you suggest the mask will help prevent in infection from that restaurant plate you’re eating off?

everyone seems to think masks have superpowers

16 ( +17 / -1 )

Tourism is a fickle industry. No one could have foreseen this happening, and the people who are going to get hurt the most are the seasonal and part time workers.

The government holds part of the blame however, as the government screw up with how it handled the cruise ship and now this follow up with a "knee-jerk" reaction with school closings, just shows again that the government does not have solid contingency plans for incidents like this!

Rebuilding the trust of people around the world is going to take a lot of time and effort.

13 ( +14 / -1 )

So the question is.... will the Government throw tax money to needy businesses or will they let things take a more natural course? Everyone talks about "change". Getting away from the "lifetime employment" system and go more for "merit" based. The same goes for any business that is given money to survive. It is the same as "lifetime employment". For every company that goes out of business it opens up more opportunity for existing and new businesses. But that is not how it works in Japan.... instead they'll draw up a nice "Stimulus Package".... one that includes some "presents" and they'll dole out the cash to keep things on an even keel. A very well managed economy that is surviving mainly by writing "rubber checks". Just issue a few Trillion JGBs.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Tourism will revive if we can show the ability to get the virus under control.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

@Akie, not this year.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@that person

and how exactly do you suggest the mask will help prevent in infection from that restaurant plate you’re eating off?

Umm that's what Yrral is saying (I think). 

Saying: Adults wear masks (thinking they have superpowers) but don't bother to encourage children to wear these *superpower" masks, which is illogical. The only sure way to avoid getting infected is self-isolation.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

I was about to arrive in Japan next week for a month but cancelled.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Tourism will only recover once this is all over (worldwide). Even if somehow Japan eradicated the virus (like Vietnam LOL), people are going to reduce travel EVERYWHERE.

Japan is part of a highly integrated, (fragile) interdependent system.

If Japanese authorities are serious about eradication, they surely must first begin to properly TEST for the virus. How do you know how prevalent it is until you know how many cases you have? Testing just 800 or less per day (on one recent day they managed just 412) nation wide is just acceptable, especially since they have the capacity to test 3000. Even Kato, when asked by an opposition party member why they are not testing at capacity, was unable to answer. His reply as he sucked his teeth was something like: "We will look into it." Seriously???

One expert told us what we know is the correct answer: "The government is not adequately testing because they want to fudge the numbers".

Why is Korea able to test over 12,000 in ONE day?

I have lost all hope.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Previous post edit:

acceptable = unacceptable

1 ( +2 / -1 )

CNN had a doctor who said that masks can never stop virus particles. Masks are only good for a person who is sick!

6 ( +8 / -2 )

That person,the young boy do not have a mask, and the adult do, I know mask do not protect you unless the are the right kind, that scientists wear in labs,

1 ( +3 / -2 )

The pace of decline was the almost same level as was in May 2011

The data is for the start of February, when the government was still sitting on its hands. Now we have closed schools and people being told to stay home and avoid gatherings, it'll be much worse. I'm not disputing the cautionary approach, I'm not a pandemic expert, but the economic effect is going to be huge.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

People don’t have time to go to tourist spots because they are in huge lines at drug stores buying out all the toilet paper and tissues.

I took a video yesterday and passed it around. Amazing lines.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

I bought the industrial masks for my son and I weeks ago and we started wearing them from, yesterday,  Not a hundred percent fool proof, however,  I do not need to hunt one down should the pros say you need to be wearing one and the other upside is they have cloth reusable filters and so you do not need to be filling up the land fill with the paper ones.  The down side for others should they wish to do the same they are all sold out my student who is a doctor wanted some for his family, however, they are sold out.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The drop in tourism only means a return to pre "easy visa" times, so why the fuss? If Japanese panic and stay away from crowds--good luck to that!--the economy will collapse. I'm not hopeful Japanese will do the right thing since there is absolutely no toilet paper to be found in stores. This, in a country that invented the shower toilet...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Therat

CNN had a doctor who said that masks can never stop virus particles. Masks are only good for a person who is sick!

Adults here are all wearing masks because they know they may be asymptomatic. So it is out of courtesy and consideration of ohers. ;)

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I hope people have realized the danger of depending too much on inbound tourism, something that is beyond our control. Japan should abandon the balanced budget policy that have hindered growth for the past two decades and start investing in domestic markets and infrastructure.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Once Japan was very poor, in worst condition after World War II being devastated by US bombing. People were howerver bright and active for recobstructing the country. Japan has got richer and people lately look exhausted and not happy with weaker family bobdadge. The virus problem has ironically brought the family back home to stay longer. TV shows that the viewers have increased. Let's see if the birth rate will increase. Japan has got poorer? No problem. We started from zero.

We can survive as we have 100yen shops.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Ashley Shiba, you could easily catch this on a contact surface, this virus last about 9 hours on objects ,now that people pets are testing positive Google Coronavirus On Contact Surface

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

If I went to a hospital and asked to be tested, it would be futile.

Why?

At present no hospital will test without symptoms even though Nocov-19 can be asymptomatic.

The other reason is that only a small percentage of hospitals even have the ability to test for the viral infection.

Watching Asian and European countries showing 2x infection rates overnight suggests that the government of Japan is doing exactly what the government of China did at the beginning of their outbreak.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Kurisupisu, you would still have the anti bodies of the Caronavirus even if you did not get sick from the virus ,traces of the virus would be present in your body

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I've got a trip booked for May/June to Japan but as it stands now, there is no way my wife and I will be able to come. It is now impossible to get insurance to cover coronavirus. Yes, there are two Japanese insurers that might cover it for us but I can only apply AFTER I arrive in Japan and only IF they are still covering coronavirus after I arrive and even then they ONLY cover medical costs and the cover is very limited. They wouldn't cover me for travel disruption like other travel insurance normally does. e.g. what if I get caught up in a quarantine and miss my flight home? As it stands, we'd be stuck with having to book replacement flights at a cost of a few thousands dollars.

So sorry Japan, unless somebody can come up with a realistic way of covering tourists against coronavirus both for medial AND for travel disruptions (i.e. like normal travel insurance), the trip won't take place for me or for thousands of others no doubt.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

I don't know about you but it seems like a good time to travel if you're aged 16-39. Lots of bargains from people cancelling and far less tourists getting in the way... I might even go to Kyoto tomorrow for the first time in years

4 ( +5 / -1 )

So, the hype and propaganda is working.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@Wobot

I don't know about you but it seems like a good time to travel if you're aged 16-39. Lots of bargains from people cancelling and far less tourists getting in the way... I might even go to Kyoto tomorrow for the first time in years

Mate, Kyoto is DEAD. Most museums/galleries all shuttered up. Many temples /shrines following suit. Might not be a good time to come mate. Here is a useful link (In Japanese)

https://ja.kyoto.travel/news/format.php?id=143

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@Mark

You're not alone. I canceled my trip to the States from Feb 15 for a month to visit the folks. Biggest two concerns were spreading it to my elderly parents and the assisted living apartment residents, and my wife getting caught up in quarantine since her English is not the greatest. Seems to me you can get insurance to cover everything but it is pricey. Unless the insurance companies have specifically stated NO corona coverage.

Better safe than sorry.

As it stands, we'd be stuck with having to book replacement flights at a cost of a few thousands dollars.

That doesn’t sound right unless you’re changing your destination. Should only be around $250. each USD to change the date. If the airlines ever make an official policy about not flying in or out of a country (China) there will be no charge. Try August or September when it’s hotter and the virus will hopefully be gone or in summer limbo.

Good luck

Invalid CSRF

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I hope people have realized the danger of depending too much on inbound tourism, something that is beyond our control

I hope Japan is not actively pursuing some kind of dependency on inbound tourism because it is just about the lowest paying sector in the economy.

I think what we have had in Japan with tourism is some rare good news in what is a declining economy. Something politicians can slap themselves on the backs and try to take credit for. The "foreigners think Japan is wonderful" line also plays right into Nihonjinron type Japanese pride.

On the insurance question, just asking, but won't "cancel for any reason" insurance cover rescheduled flights etc.? If it won't, I can't book anything myself. We're a family of five.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

@fizzbit

Virtually all insurance companies have a standard clause that excludes pandemics OR if they didn't exclude pandemics as a matter of course, announced on January 22nd (pretty much worldwide) that they would NOT be providing coverage for coronavirus going forward. I've already read of one intrepid soul who contacted company after company asking if it was possible to pay an extra premium for coronavirus coverage and was told in every case that it was not possible to get coverage.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Time for some short term pain to achieve long term gain.

Shutter up. Get the virus under control. Short term pain.

We already know trying to appease China and keeping things going is disastrous. If you're going to spare some time out, spare it for a protest against Xi when he visits in April.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Some folks on threads have mentioned no one SAW this coming.....

I beg to differ, to me viruses like Covid 19 are & still are OBVIOUSLY COMING.....we just do not know WHEN they will is all!!.

As I have been harping for years, Mother Nature is NOT happy with us humans & she sometimes gives us hints of that, Covid 19 IS one of those hints.

Mother Nature has 3 basic arrows in her quiver, Geologic (earthquakes, volcanoes etc), Weather(Storms, drought etc) & finally Biological( DNA, diseases, viruses etc)

And the last two Weather & Biology are directly related to each other although many on our planet seem to disagree for odd reasons.

And here we are!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Mother Nature

Please don't blame mother nature for China's incompetence.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

When Ebola hit in Africa in 1995 and presented an immediate danger to the whole world, we were not ready. This was 19 years after the virus was discovered. When it hit again in 2014, another 19 years later, we were still not ready.

SARS hit in 2002. Even though it was 40 years after human coronaviruses had been discovered, we were not ready. Now Covid-2019 is here 17 years later and we are still not ready.

Yes, we need to deal with the immediate threat. Yes, tour bus operators are going to have a tough time for a while. After this though, we must look at the bigger picture and figure out how to prepare ourselves better for outbreaks like this. Because they will come again and they will be worse.

Abe wants to violate the constitution and spend billions and billions on a Japanese army? Spend some of the money on virology and vaccine R&D, rapid vaccine development facilities, and anti-pandemic efforts instead. This is where the real threat lies, as we are clearly seeing now.

New viruses will continue to emerge. Pandemics will continue to happen - we've known this for more than a 100 years and yet we are never, ever ready. We need to be ready.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Abe wants to violate the constitution and spend billions and billions on a Japanese army? Spend some of the money on virology and vaccine R&D, rapid vaccine development facilities, and anti-pandemic efforts instead. This is where the real threat lies, as we are clearly seeing now.

On the money ^. Japan's high density living environment needs a more robust health infrastructure. Until then, be cautious.

I read elsewhere today Australia's first covid19 death is actually a Diamond Princess quarantinee. How sad, trip of a life time turned into trip of a life time literally. His wife is also in a serious condition in hospital. They boarded the ship virus free. Not perfect quarantine doesn't cut it for the family of this couple.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

i don't know but these mask fanatics keep bring up the subject any chance they get.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I know for Australians air tickets to Japan are cheap but Japan is getting pricey for some as the dollar is getting caned. Set to go under 70 yen this week.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Well,after the virus has been contained,there'll be bargains for people to travel on.Don't need to feel too sorry for those industries.They've been making money hand over fist for years.A bad few months won't hurt so to speak.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

May i?

Nope, wearing a mask won't protect 100% against the virus.

Anything else?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Ashley Shiba, “you do not need to be filling up the land fill with the paper ones.”

Filling up landfills with paper masks is not an issue in Japan. The vast majority of such trash is incinerated.

invalid CSRF

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Please don't blame mother nature for China's incompetence.

FYI mankind is a PART of NATURE, we are NOT separate from NATURE!!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

that personToday 07:24 am JST

@Yrral

and how exactly do you suggest the mask will help prevent in infection from that restaurant plate you’re eating off?

everyone seems to think masks have superpowers

Good point, saw a doctors commentary on the mask, they are better used on people who have an illness because the mask prevents fluids from the nose and mouth being spread around.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

So have hotel & air travel charges been reduced in the likes of Osaka & Tokyo in an attempt to attract foreign tourists ? Have the Ministry of Tourism been pro-active b y reassuring such tourists that Japan is safe and welcoming now and for the Olympics ? It would at least be a start

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I heard recently on BBC that new travel insurance policies are restricting cover for virus infection so that obviously now presents a severe restriction for visitors from UK. Maybe the Japanese Government may have to consider offering such full cover for arriving tourists ?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The message of Mark above is very worrying and confirms my suspicions on this subject. Briefly, even if WHO has not yet declared a world Pandemic for CV, it seems there is no longer any cover (including repatriation) available for visitors to Japan or elsewhere now and for the possible July Olympics !

This , surely, is the death knell for Japanese tourism & the Olympics this year at least ?? Another legal/medical complication is what happens to a visitor who catches such CV etc on a flight to or from Japan ? Who if any is responsible for the health care of the passenger/s? The airline where the flight originated from, its government ?

I again wonder if its a solution to protect such valuable revenue if the respective Governments (possible airlines) under right full travel insurance cover ? I recall seeing insurance booths at major airports where one could apply for additional cover

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Hope that the employees in those affected industries still get paid on leave in any form (financed by the state program?), which could help raising potential demands. Just like a virus, excessive self-restraints are also contagious transmitting negative outlook or conformism into neighboring industries as well as households.

In a long run we better build a "virus-proof" economy. I find the Japanese society inherently vulnerable to the outbreak (either naturally occurring or terror-intended). Crowded commuting is a good case in point.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

English schools are suffering too.

70% of my students have canceled classes for at least the next two weeks, some what to take the whole month off.

Can only hope for good news in the next two weeks and

hope the government doesn't forget us when giving out financial aid…

Would love to know how other small schools are coping.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

hope the government doesn't forget us when giving out financial aid…

You received any help after 3/11 ? Same this time.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

It will be years before the tourism industry in China and Korea recovers. As for Japan, it's different because Japan is in the good and capable hands of Abe administration. They will take action to turn the tide around. You just have to be a good Japanese and support the Japanese Gov't. Doing anything less would be unpatriotic.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Recession always happen in trade, tourism and transport sector should be perpared more for calmities.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

As I have been harping for years, Mother Nature is NOT happy with us humans & she sometimes gives us hints of that, Covid 19 IS one of those hints.

Please-this sounds like what a witch doctor would be saying a hundred years ago.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

the people who are going to get hurt the most are the seasonal and part time workers.

Yes, but that is why those people enjoy more freedom in regards to work in peaceful times. Freedom always involves more risks. We all know that all jobs are not created equal. It might help some of you guys to start looking for a job in the pharmaceutical industry. I’m sure they need more manpower. That is what I would do if I got out of work due to this epidemic. I wish whoever is in trouble good luck.
0 ( +0 / -0 )

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