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Japan seeks more visitors despite overtourism problems

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That's sounds like Japanese logic, want but don't want.

-20 ( +42 / -62 )

We love the tourists... we love them not... we love the tourists........ You know the rest.

-15 ( +35 / -50 )

A 5000 yen charge to see a world heritage sight like Himeji sounds about right.

It's not as if you would visit weekly.

This story attracted 200 posts on JT , and I'm left wondering what a stingy lot posters are.

How much do you spend on a meal or drinks without a quibble.?

-17 ( +30 / -47 )

Kyoto is already overwhelmed. And Mt Fuji is limited to 4000 visitors or something a day and you are charged for climbing it. Small towns are putting up barriers to block tourists and this will just increase.

And on top of it, they are going to be charged more than the locals under a two tier pricing system.

This is not a policy of "welcoming" tourists at all. The government out of touch with reality.

4 ( +31 / -27 )

This is not a policy of "welcoming" tourists at all. The government out of touch with reality.

In Japan, it's not first time. Will happen more and more in the future.

-24 ( +20 / -44 )

More tourism = more xenophobia.

-21 ( +28 / -49 )

Japan seeks more visitors despite overtourism problems

This should be “Japanese bureaucrats seek more visitors despite overtourism problems.”

The average Japanese resident feels we have too many foreign visitors.

2 ( +18 / -16 )

It is quite simple really, the hospitality/tourism sector is vital to J economy.

Now either welcome "foreigners" with open arms, introduce visitors to all the facets J culture has to offer, yes Mount Fuji, Kyoto or *Not***. **

And face the middle to long term economic consequences.

4 ( +15 / -11 )

"There are still many little-known places in Japan that are left unexplored by tourists from overseas -- I believe Japan has infinite tourism resources," Takahashi said.

The problem is that 95% of the tourists only visit three places. Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto. Which I think many people are thankful for!

19 ( +30 / -11 )

I think that Mr.Takahashi is trying to that that Japan wants more tourists money, and tourists, despite being an utter nuisance are a good cash cow. Can't always have your cake and eat it.

-16 ( +10 / -26 )

5,000,000 a month, up from the current pace of 3,000,000. Something is going to have to give here, but as long as the yen rate is so low, it is entirely feasible.

3 ( +11 / -8 )

Start charging foreign tourists ¥10,000 entry fee into the country. This would bring in $3-500 million per month, into the government’s coffers - desperately needed dollars (or yen)

-27 ( +8 / -35 )

Japan seeks more visitors despite overtourism problems

Japan being neurotic as usual.

We love the tourists... we love them not... we love the tourists........ You know the rest.

Exactly. Beat me to it.

-13 ( +12 / -25 )

This is madness. Japan isn’t like the US or France in terms of land mass. It’s already overcrowded. But the authorities will continue pushing tourism because they don’t have to do anything difficult.

13 ( +20 / -7 )

So that will be 60 million tourists all looking for trash bin. Any plans to deal with that? Conbini are going to take it all in?

4 ( +21 / -17 )

There is no reason Japan cannot ultimately replace France as the most visited place on earth - perhaps by 2040. Yes - this will require big investment by government and infrastructure projects, but the export money will be worth it.

The key is to get foreign tourists back on multiple return visits - some already visit yearly but this needs to increase. And get more out of Tokyo-Osaka-Kyoto. Start aggressively promoting Okinawa, Hokkaido, Shikoku and Tohoku. Promote small mountain villages, onsen-towns and all of the lesser-known ski resorts. There is still a huge tract of Japan largely undiscovered by foreign tourists.

-8 ( +12 / -20 )

 Japan has infinite tourism resources

This guy lacks a simple understanding of infinite.

The same thinking behind infinite growth of the economy on a finite planet.

10 ( +14 / -4 )

Ichiro Takahashi, head of Japan's tourism agency, speaks for the tourism agency not all of Japan.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Go to the lesser known but great sights in Gumma, Tochigi, Fukushima, or northern Ibaraki, about an hour and a half out of Tokyo, and you’ll see almost no foreign tourists, apart from the odd Japan resident. There’s plenty of places in this small country, the foreigners mostly congregate in the few most popular ones.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Not just right efforts, make smart investments in physical infrastructure, human resources, the promotion of expanded tourism sites and technology.

"It is a figure that we can very much achieve by making the right efforts", Takahashi told a briefing in Tokyo.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

@sakurasuki

Based on the number of downvotes you quickly receive compared to other posters regardless of what you write, I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that you have a coordinated bot campaign targeted against you similar to the anti-China campaign the U.S. government recently ran in the Philippines, as reported by Reuters last week.

“A Reuters Investigation: Pentagon ran secret anti-vax campaign to undermine China during pandemic,” 14 June 2024, https://www.reuters.com/investigates/special-report/usa-covid-propaganda/

-8 ( +6 / -14 )

With the collapse of Japan's manufacturing industry, Japan got two pillar industries left, finance and tourism.

Japanese will have to endure 60 million foreign tourists/year to earn enough dollars to import food and oil.

-24 ( +2 / -26 )

Japan's tourism chief said Thursday its ambitious goal of luring 60 million foreign tourists a year -- more than double the current level…

( O___O )’’’

One word. NO. Just… NO.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Ichiro Takahashi, head of Japan's tourism agency, speaks for the tourism agency not all of Japan.

He speaks for a lot more people than YOU do. You represent a tiny ultranationalist fringe element that is being ignored more and more in mainstream society.

And you know it.

-2 ( +9 / -11 )

Shikoku could use a lot more foreign or local tourists. Our numbers are nowhere near pre COVID. The contrast to the three overcrowded areas of Kanto, Kansai, and Chubu is massive,

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Shikoku could use a lot more foreign or local tourists.

Certainly somewhere I have been interested in seeing alongside Gifu. Problem is time and money. We looked into a Shikoku vacation years ago and found that it was more expensive than we realized

5 ( +9 / -4 )

Japan seeks more visitors despite overtourism problems

Translation:

Despite the old people and xenophobic locals complaining and living in the past! Japan needs the outside money!

-7 ( +12 / -19 )

Japan seeks more visitors despite overtourism problems

Translation:

Despite the old people and xenophobic locals complaining and living in the past! Japan needs the outside money!

You're a good translator mate!

-7 ( +12 / -19 )

Shikoku ...rent a car and sleep in it...or the many cheaper accomodations used by surfers.

The road is good, with a 50 k limit and patience tested when stuck behind a tractor.

I lived there for a little while...cant wait to go back.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

His or her “pointless opinions” are often supported by links to reputable reporting, such as Nikkei, PBS, and CNN.

Including these?

That's sounds like Japanese logic, want but don't want.

In Japan, it's not first time. Will happen more and more in the future.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

There is no reason Japan cannot ultimately replace France as the most visited place on earth -

Not gonna happen, simple island geography. Also the yen will not stay in this gutter forever , despite the govt and BoJ impotence. The numbers will plateu and fall off when that happens. Despite that Japan will stay a popular destination I think.

Hey Gajin, Gajijn tourist is less than 1 % of GDP.*

Just under 1% of GDP per 1 gaijin? Those are some mighty gaijin individuals, imagine if a dozen more such gaijin come, Japan's GDP growth will be phenomenal and envy of the world once again, just like in Showa era.

Another gaijin idiot.

That sounds like a rant of a demented person.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Can't live with 'em. Can't live without 'em.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

GuruMick,

Shikoku ...rent a car and sleep in it...or the many cheaper accomodations used by surfers.

Cool fun! I can't wait to see the reaction when tourists start using caravans, R.Vs and Kombi vans! Or, heaven forbid, freedom campers!

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Translation: Despite the old people and xenophobic locals complaining and living in the past! Japan needs the outside money!

You're a good translator mate!

I second that :)

2 ( +9 / -7 )

Japan is overrated! Limited sightseeing spots which are mostly in super small areas make it easily overcrowded. Then the locals start to complain and build hatred in their minds as well as heart against foreigners! It’s a bad bad situation for everyone!

-13 ( +7 / -20 )

Can't live with 'em. Can't live without 'em.

That's been Japan's approach to the outside world in general.

-6 ( +13 / -19 )

"The local citizens using the castle as a community hub should not be charged the same amount as people who only visit for sightseeing purposes once every 10 years," he said. "

I believe that statement is untrue. No one can use the castle and its grounds for anything other than a visit. Local people use the park area for free. The castle fee should be increased to ¥2,000 for all visitors, children should be charged ¥500, and disabled visitors should enter for free.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Already mentioned but yes, public trash bins are absolutely needed. Tourists from other countries are use to them. Another quirky backwards aspect of Japan. It would solve the tourist garbage problem and make life easier for the locals.

6 ( +14 / -8 )

Japan is overrated! Limited sightseeing spots which are mostly in super small areas make it easily overcrowded

Hundreds of millions disagree.

You should get out of the Tokyo-Osaka-Kyoto zone. Get up to Hokkaido (it's just a 1hr, 30 minute flight). Definitely no overcrowding there. National parks, onsen, hiking, mouthwatering seafood- and the best powder snow in winter you'll find anywhere.

Much of Japan is still seriously under-rated.

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

Why not charge everyone who uses a toilet? They do that in Europe!

-20 ( +2 / -22 )

Singaporesnow?

Today 08:18 am JST

It is quite simple really, the hospitality/tourism sector is vital to J economy.

> Another gaijin (edit). Hey Gajin, Gajijn tourist is less than 1 % of GDP.

Ah the famous GDP as if it is the be all and end all!

The funny thing about stats, on one list it was 1% pre-covid but another list it is 7% pre-covid so as usual with stats you pick what you want , right?

What isn't disputable is the employment and industry and the Tourism industry accounted for around 10% of employment pre-covid and is growing primarily due to the influx of foreign tourists as the Japanese population ages and fewer Japanese travel due to age and health, the foreign portion will become more and more important.

Just a quick look around Tokyo and you can see the difference!

Popular areas that were previously big tourists zones that didn't adapt to the changing demographics are full of empty "shotengai" and closes businesses.

Areas that adapted and areas that were previously less popular but openly encouraged foreign tourists are booming.

Best example is the long long running outdoor antique shows that discouraged foreigners are now closed or closing due to few buyers.

While start-ups that actually advertise in multiple languages and offer services to non Japanese are booming as are the areas these shows are located.

The tourist industry is trying to adapt but the old anti-foreigner attitude and "we don't like change" older generation are doing their best to stop progress!

-5 ( +6 / -11 )

Fighto!Today  08:05 am JST

There is no reason Japan cannot ultimately replace France as the most visited place on earth - perhaps by 2040.

Japan is only 70% of France in terms of area, and 70% of it is mountains. So the available space compared to France is much smaller.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

The municipality famous for Himeji Castle is mulling making the World Heritage site's admission fees for overseas tourists four times as expensive as those for local residents, local media reported.

> "A wooden structure will be worn out and become more brittle after many people climb up and down", mayor Hideyasu Kiyomoto told Japanese media, stressing the need to "curb overtourism".

Then what is needed is to impose daily visitor limits. Of course they can also raise charges for everyone of they want extra revenue

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Japan is overrated! Limited sightseeing spots which are mostly in super small areas make it easily overcrowded. Then the locals start to complain and build hatred in their minds as well as heart against foreigners! It’s a bad bad situation for everyone!

Just because she broke your heart, it doesn't mean you should blame an entire country.

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

Seigi

Today 09:26 am JST

Why not charge everyone who uses a toilet? They do that in Europe!

The EU and UK also require that sushi rice be kept at below 5°C (horrible).

So not everything Europe does is a good idea or needs to be copied!

The 7-eleven next my station doesn't have a toilet for the public (located in an office building the only toilets are in the restricted office section) the manager is en charge of 2 locations this one and one located further from the station with a public toilet, my son previously worked part time in both locations and the manager said the one at the station gets less business and the big reason is people go in ask for the toilet and are told there is non but the other one has a toilet and they leave go to the one with a toilet, then often buy something there.

Places that offer free toilets and now free water bottle refill feature Higher on tourist information sites.

My store offers both free water bottle refill and free use of the toilet, I would estimate this brings about 30% more traffic and 20% more sales especially since I am not in a heavy traffic area and quite a distance from most tourist areas.

Free WiFi, free water, toilet, air-conditioning (yes just coming in to cool off is fine), multi-lingual service, yes people seem to be fine with a little detour to get these things and in many cases they will return the favour by picking up a little souvenir to take home!

Europe is not Japan the tourism industry is very different, most people are from other EU countries with direct ground routes, speak somewhat local language or can read or have a basic knowledge of the local language or English.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

I wholeheartedly agree.

Of course you agree! You wrote the previous posts encouraging more trash bins.

It’s easy to agree with yourself!

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

A 5000 yen charge to see a world heritage sight like Himeji sounds about right.

It's half a day's take-home pay for a typical working-class person here. Ten times what you'd typically pay to enter a similar site.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Yen is going to reach soon a value of 1$=200¥, meaning a 100% devaluation compared to the USD from 4 years ago.

This means that Japan will be basically twice as cheap as 4 years ago, so tourists will come in hordes anyways. At least until prices will explode here too, making the life of the local residents even more miserable.

Japan is quickly going into a tourism based economy, no longer going to be a 1st world country. Basically is going to be on the same level as Thailand, Philippines, Cambodgia, Vietnam, etc...

-11 ( +6 / -17 )

OssanAmerica

Today 09:20 am JST

Already mentioned but yes, public trash bins are absolutely needed.

Absolutely not!

Go to any major city in the west and what you find are overflowing public trash bins.

Remember these bins need to be emptied daily (sometimes multiple times a day).

And who is going to do it? Public servants!

And who will end up paying for those public servants? The tax payer!

There must be thousands of YouTube videos of travel bloggers originally complaining about Japan not having public trash bins, then a few follow up videos later as they return home, they realize how dirty and disgusting their own cities are especially around the public trash bins!

I was recently back in my home country and the public bins everywhere were basically unusable because they were already overflowing with trash.

And yes people will use them to dump home trash if they missed pickup day.

-11 ( +5 / -16 )

God help us.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

I’m just sad that it’s become like this. I’m not looking forward to my trip to Tokyo/Yokohama in 10 days, the same way I have the past 20 (?) trips since 2017, ~30 trips since 2003. I’m still now trying to find an excuse to get away from the tourism, but all my friends are in Kanto area, and Japanese have zero work-life flexibility.

The real problem is Japan’s economy. The yen is so cheap and standard of living is declining so much. Japanese resent the “rich” care-free tourist. If Japan were prospering, they’d be welcoming the tourists, but that’s not the case.

I don’t remember sentiment anything like this pre-COVID when tourism was near these levels. I was there more than home Nov 2019 - March 2020.

my 2-cents. Makes me sad.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Himeji Castle

"A wooden structure will be worn out and become more brittle after many people climb up and down", mayor Hideyasu Kiyomoto told Japanese media, stressing the need to "curb over-tourism".

Daily limit for the number of visitors entering the castle keep.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

AntiquesavingToday  10:05 am JST

OssanAmerica

Today 09:20 am JST

Already mentioned but yes, public trash bins are absolutely needed.

Absolutely not!

Go to any major city in the west and what you find are overflowing public trash bins.

Remember these bins need to be emptied daily (sometimes multiple times a day).

And who is going to do it? Public servants!

Only a person who has never lived in Japan could possibly be against public trash bins, Or an idiot. Do you enjoy having to carry your trash home all the time? Even public parks, where you see people eating their bentos at lunchtime don't have public trash bins. The Japanese public servants are extremely well organized and efficient. Far moreso than many places in other parts of the world.

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

The idea that Japan has "infinite" tourism resources is laughable. Even the latest World Heritage places are scraping the bottom of the barrel. The silk mill gets pretty bad reviews online and its appeal seems to lie solely in being a large building made of bricks. You're not going to lure hoards away from Kiyomizudera with that.

Yes if you hire a car or motorbike, there is lots of exploring to do, some great scenery and nice hikes. Japanese rural towns aren't generally very nice though, so you can forget about comparisons with rural France or Italy. Half an hour of watching the Tour de France should illustrate this very clearly. Without the car or motorbike, you are going to struggle to get anywhere. Rural trains that run once every two hours and take 70 minutes to go 50km (my local line) stopping at unmanned platforms every ninety seconds will get tiresome pretty quickly.

(foreign) tourist is less than 1 % of GDP.

I think its only recently overtaken pachinko as a contributer to GDP. I've never seen pachinko mentioned in positive economic terms or heard anyone present data about it. We now hear about foreign tourism pretty much every single day.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

OssanAmerica

Today 10:21 am JST

Only a person who has never lived in Japan could possibly be against public trash bins, Or an idiot. Do you enjoy having to carry your trash home all the time? Even public parks, where you see people eating their bentos at lunchtime don't have public trash bins. The Japanese public servants are extremely well organized and efficient. Far moreso than many places in other parts of the world.

Funny, I have lived here in Japan for well over 30 years, no trash bins has never been a problem!

Not even when I was a single father with 2 young children one still in diapers.

Carried around soiled diapers, and all the rest until we got home!

I am sure Japanese public services are good but you failed to factor in the extra time (meaning extra cost) efficiency isn't the problem cost is, especially if you factor in foreign tourists, if the city needs to dispose of the trash that means your tax, if the foreign tourist brings it back to the hotel well that becomes the hotel's cost and they needs to pay for business trash pickup!

But my main point stands!

Look at Japan, look at Tokyo, Osaka, etc.. then look at London, Rome, NY, Los Angeles, etc...and tell us that their streets with public trash bins are cleaner!

-3 ( +10 / -13 )

OssanAmerica

Today 10:21 am JST

One more point!

The only people I have ever met complaining about Japan not having public trash bins are foreigners.

Every Japanese I know understand the reason, the facts and are fine with bringing their garbage home or back to their hotel when traveling!

-2 ( +11 / -13 )

Many Japanese people discard their garbage on the streets, as well as along rivers and other beautiful places. This behavior is shameful.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

Better start putting up three metre screens on every road throughout the country. Just walk through the tunnels and buy stuff. Sayonara.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

so much attention for the tourists that are here for a week or two.

No love for migrant workers who have been paying taxes to this impotent "ossan" government all these years. All our hard-earned salaries in yen does not even buy us 2 plane tickets a year.

Good luck filling up all those empty jobs caused by decreasing JP population, if you keep valuing tourists more.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

Japan reminds me of traveling through Boracay and the rest of Philipines. Tourists coming to town to enjoy everything they've got to offer, while locals get to look at them in envy, poor and unable to do the same.

-8 ( +5 / -13 )

The LDP is intentionally creating overtourism. This is a very conscious, thought-out policy.

The electorate does not really understand this. The news media often implies that the weak yen is the primary driver. However the surge in tourism began before the weak yen.

So will the LDP be held accountable at the polls?

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

"There are still many little-known places in Japan that are left unexplored by tourists from overseas -- I believe Japan has infinite tourism resources," Takahashi said.

Yeah, because they raised the prices of rail passes to insane prices and they never promote other areas of Japan.

To Foreigners, Japan = only, Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto and MAYBE Hiroshima.............

0 ( +2 / -2 )

You will notice that the LDP promotes a huge increase in tourism along with zero discussion of the infrastructure needed to support it.

This is at a time when the media complains (falsely) of a lack of drivers, when trains are insufficient and overcrowded and late. In many places buses are overburdened with tourists.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Most tourists do not want to visit "little-known places". They want famous places like Kyoto.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

wallaceToday  10:39 am JST

Many Japanese people discard their garbage on the streets, as well as along rivers and other beautiful places. This behavior is shameful.

Maybe but compare a large city like Tokyo and a large City like Paris and it is day and night.

All people arriving in Japan can’t believe how clean it is. According to my own experience this is what they all say after a few hours in Japan.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Rakuraku

wallace

Many Japanese people discard their garbage on the streets, as well as along rivers and other beautiful places. This behavior is shameful.

Maybe but compare a large city like Tokyo and a large City like Paris and it is day and night.

I don't care about Paris because I don't live there. Two wrongs do not make a right.

All people arriving in Japan can’t believe how clean it is. According to my own experience this is what they all say after a few hours in Japan.

Again, that does deny the fact too many Japanese dump their garbage. I go into mountains or along rivers and find items like washing machines or cars dumped.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

My country, Germany, is the 7th most visited place in the world, with fluctuating numbers year on year, as most places. It is a lot larger than Japan with thousands of places worth seeing, and of course with autobahn's connecting with all its neighbouring countries. It also has great train and bus services, which are not too expensive, and our people are generally very friendly to tourists, but not all. But with this Japanese official, Ichiro Takahashi, may be he shoud also consider opening all Japans government offices so that tourist can see the hard working officials at work...........Oh and yes, that includes Kashida's place......not that he is ever there that much.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

There is no reason Japan cannot ultimately replace France as the most visited place on earth -

Don't think so, simple geography - an island country with access only via air ( and limited cruise ports ) vs one in middle of Europe surrounded by well off EU population connected via air, rail, road.

If and when JPY improves from the current too low levels, demand will level off.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

"It is a figure that we can very much achieve by making the right efforts", Takahashi told a briefing in Tokyo.

.

Takahashi san could get out there marshaling tourists, driving a cab or picking up trash.

The problems will soon be solved if we all keep our hands pressed to our sides and breath in and out lightly…

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

AntiquesavingToday  10:34 am JST

OssanAmerica

Today 10:21 am JST

*Only a person who has never lived in Japan could possibly be against public trash bins**, Or an idiot. Do you enjoy having to carry your trash home all the time? Even public parks, where you see people eating their bentos at lunchtime don't have public trash bins. The Japanese public servants are extremely well organized and efficient. Far moreso than many places in other parts of the world.*

Funny, I have lived here in Japan for well over 30 years, no trash bins has never been a problem!

Well you are a unique one-of-a-kind. Because for the rest of us who are used to seeing public trash bins on sidewalks, shopping malls. public parks, the lack of public trash bins is an annoyance.

Your argument that having trash bins would result in more garbage is ridiculous. Do you seriously think that having public trash bins would not alleviate the present problem of trash left behind by foreign tourists whio are used to having public trash bins? Think hard instead of just arguing for arguments sake,

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Why doesn't anyone mention Kyushu here? You can just visit Kyushu and you've seen and experienced almost everything that is Japan. I'm not a fan of hordes of tourists, but a little more internationality would do South Kyushu, where I live, good. At the moment, it's mainly Asians who come here, but I've also met groups from France. The only thing I fear is that things will become more expensive then. Salaries here in the city are extremely low.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

But an influx of tourists to Japan has reignited concerns over overtourism in recent months, with local residents complaining of their sometimes unruly behavior and etiquette breaches

That's silly

Because the tourist aren't even aware of so called etiquette rules as there's little communication about it - signs or English speakers.

Japanese seem to think the whole world understands their laws.

Fair enough to respect Japan’s laws and customs and etiquette however please focus on language education and information for foreign visitors

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Did you hear the one about the Japanese guy who wanted more foreigners walking around Japan?

No?- Me either

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

Trying to replicate the Venetian experience?

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

@Fighto

why do you have to turn everything into a competition? It’s childish. Eventually, overtourism will diminish the quality of life for residents. In my opinion it already has. Try to think beyond material benefits.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

We just had this story yesterday! You are either happy for the injection of free money and opportunity into the economy, or you are just part of the sad, bitter mob that would prefer to stay on the titanic because it has nice music playing and a stable view!

adapting to opportunities and free money, so bothersome…

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

I live approximately 15 kilometers away from Himeji Castle. Despite our seaside location, we seldom receive foreign tourists; most visitors are Japanese from the major cities.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Japan seeks more visitors despite overtourism problems

seeks more Vistors' spending in popular spots... is the only intent I believe.

"There are still many little-known places in Japan that are left unexplored by tourists from overseas -- I believe Japan has infinite tourism resources," Takahashi said.

This is for budget travellers to explore ..... not able to tackle over-tourism in known locations?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

I think the main issue is that 90% of foreign tourists mainly just go to 3 spots, Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, and even within those cities most go to the same few spots. There are so much to see in Japan but everyone just knows of those places, if it was more spread out it would be less noticeable even with an increase.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I live approximately 15 kilometers away from Himeji Castle. Despite our seaside location, we seldom receive foreign tourists; most visitors are Japanese from the major cities.

.

@wallace

The top three visitors to Japan are Chinese, Koreans and Taiwanese. In the main, all come from overcrowded cities.

Grouping together is a cultural norm and if it can be replicated on holiday then so much the better.

This is why there aren’t many foreigners coming to your locale-too much space…

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Japan seeks more visitors despite overtourism problems

same approach to immigration and same approach to US military. It's like I want a second dog, would be great company for our first, twice the fun but how appalling that I must clean up twice the poop! That's called reality, it ain't all cookies and cream, there's a little poop sprinkled on top!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I am not even sure there are enough today hotel rooms to cope with the tourists in some areas. And not enough buses or shinkansens at peak times if more tourists will come to enjoy.

I was in Paris today and I can tell you Japan would never bear that amount of wandering people ever.

The fact that Japan is losing many inhabitants every year will leave some space in the countryside but not in visited cities.

I don't respect yens to recovers much and inflation to raise much ever so politicians are making an easy guess in my opinion.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Its the downfall of the Land of the Rising Sun. Without tourism, economy will be in doldrums. There is no way Japan can make money - besides cars, its lagging in all going down in all other sectors.

Last 30 years economy and lifestyle has fallen consistently. Next 20 years, it will get worse. So without the tourists that can spend money on a battered Yen, there is not much hope.

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

wallace

Today 11:31 am JST

Most tourists do not want to visit "little-known places". They want famous places like Kyoto

Most people I know or have met thar visit Japan actually want or wanted to go outside the usual tourist locations.

But the infrastructure and service to non Japanese speakers and worse not able to read or write Japanese it the main obstacle.

Try booking a riokan in a small town or even some popular Onsen locations.

Many have Japanese only homepages, Japanese only registration/reservation and are often not even on the popular international travel booking sites!

I have over the decades Taken family and friends to many locations that they would otherwise not be able on their own!

But then you get places like Kawaguchiko that when tourists do find them, they say we don't want you or your money, I guess places like Kawaguchiko must be very rich to reject outside money.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Tourists numbers by city.

Tokyo

Osaka

Kyoto

Nagoya

Hokkaido

Mt. Fuji

Hakuba Valley

Okinawa Islands

Yokohama

Fukuoka
2 ( +4 / -2 )

dudichdir

Today 01:56 pm JST

Its the downfall of the Land of the Rising Sun. Without tourism, economy will be in doldrums. There is no way Japan can make money - besides cars, its lagging in all going down in all other sectors.

> Last 30 years economy and lifestyle has fallen consistently. Next 20 years, it will get worse. So without the tourists that can spend money on a battered Yen, there is not much hope.

I guess you haven't looked at the economies of many of the western developed countries.

Few if any western economy can now compete internationally in manufacturing or even resource exploitation in their own countries.

Service industry in the USA is 70% of the economy, France 82% etc...

The service industry includes Tourism with around 3% in the USA but by state some it is 80%, France 10% and similar numbers in Italy etc...

Japan is behind the rest of the developed world in developing services including tourism.

The days of producing products for export are long gone in the developed countries and this is not sinking into the heads of many old people in Japan and these are the people most resisting the influx of tourists and especially foreign tourists.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

The lack of Japanese does not prevent the tourists from coming. Smartphones can translate.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

OssanAmerica

Today 11:58 am JST

Well you are a unique one-of-a-kind. Because for the rest of us who are used to seeing public trash bins on sidewalks, shopping malls. public parks, the lack of public trash bins is an annoyance.

So I guess you don't live in Japan!

Because if you are so used to

who are used to seeing public trash bins on sidewalks, shopping malls. public parks

Then you don't live in Japan, because this hasn't been a thing in Japan for decades!

Shopping malls as far as I know, they all have trash bins in Japan, I cannot remember one without them.

But those are actually privately owned;

Parks, sidewalks nope haven't seen one in a park or sidewalks in decades (don't see many sidewalks either in Japan).

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

wallace

Today 02:30 pm JST

The lack of Japanese does not prevent the tourists from coming. Smartphones can translate.

Try booking a riokan using a translation app!

Let's be honest, if trying to book a trip to some out of the way place is complicated and difficult then people will avoid it!

I have been here over 30 years, even traveling with my Japanese wife, when we walk in to out of the way Onsen/riokan the look of panic on the staff's faces at the sight of a Gaijin is visible from the parking lot!

Now imagine a foreigner not accompanied by a Japanese spouse and with zero knowledge of the Japanese language.

The panic by the staff would be ten fold.

6 ( +11 / -5 )

Antiquesaving

sorry, but you seem full of excuses. I have traveled to many countries without speaking the language and had little difficulty booking a hotel or ordering a meal. That was decades before smartphones. Open a Japanese page or any other page in Chrome and it will translate it for you.

I have lived in remote areas in Japan and had no problems with hotels, Onsens, and restaurants.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

wallace

Today 02:48 pm JST

Antiquesaving

> sorry, but you seem full of excuses

No I live in the real world!

Now go back and read all the recent articles bashing foreign tourism and see that complaints about foreigners not understanding Japanese is at or near the top of these anti- foreign tourists lists.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

You’re reaching a tipping point where it will start to affect the quality of life of the people living here and there will be a pushback. They should be trying to increase the strength of the yen so we can all afford to go abroad again..

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Antiquesaving

wallace

Sorry, but you seem full of excuses

No I live in the real world!

Where do you think I live and much longer than you?

Now go back and read all the recent articles bashing foreign tourism and see that complaints about foreigners not understanding Japanese is at or near the top of these anti- foreign tourists lists.

You too often exaggerate your negative experiences. My experiences are less negative.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Moskollo

Today 03:25 pm JST

You’re reaching a tipping point where it will start to affect the quality of life of the people living here and there will be a pushback. They should be trying to increase the strength of the yen so we can all afford to go abroad again..

Using that logic, we shouldn't have had the industrial revolution, it moved the populations in the western world for the country side to the cities, trains and cars opened up places to others and brought industry and tourism.

But you seem to want a return to a time long gone and interestingly you want Japanese and yourself to go be a tourist in other countries without a care the changes that does in those places! NIBY seems to be what you are saying!

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Few if any western economy can now compete internationally in manufacturing or even resource exploitation in their own countries.

Service industry in the USA is 70% of the economy, France 82% etc...

The service industry includes Tourism with around 3% in the USA but by state some it is 80%, France 10% and similar numbers in Italy etc...

Japan is behind the rest of the developed world in developing services including tourism.

The days of producing products for export are long gone in the developed countries and this is not sinking into the heads of many old people in Japan

This is true.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

wallace

Today 03:26 pm JST

You too often exaggerate your negative experiences. My experiences are less negative.

Reality is reality!

You seem to forget the complaints in all the articles!

Come on let's try being realistic!

Already in major cities in Japan many places have difficulty dealing with non Japanese speakers, even major chains and family restaurants are fully challenged when non Japanese speakers go there.

But you are trying to say that a countryside riokan with zero knowledge of any other language than Japanese, not non Japanese on their website, no outside way of making a reservation other than their all Japanese website or by phone in Japanese is a place accessable to a foreign tourist with no Japanese skills but has a smartphone?

In Tokyo an acquaintance of my parents visiting had a heart attack on vacation.

The ambulance brought him to a large university hospital late night, it took an hour for them to find a good enough English speaker to show up and explain what was going on!

I don't blame the hospital, this is Japan not England and we all know the general foreign language skills of the Japanese is one of the lowest in the world.

This was in Tokyo and a major big university hospital.

Now imagine a small town in the countryside!

Japan is changing the younger generation has far more skills in foreign languages but they tend to gravitate to the big cities.

Look at Kawaguchiko, they couldn't even handle dealing with foreign tourists, all they needed to do wa ls hire a few people to explain the rules in the needed languages , put a few signs up in other languages!

Instead they opted to just shut everything down out if fear!

0 ( +6 / -6 )

The UK attracted 38 million overseas tourists in 2023 - you don't hear our population demanding streets in tourist hotspots be closed to them. That's actually about half of the population of the UK itself, 65 or so million people.

Japan and the UK are also about the same size in terms of land mass.

Funny that

1 ( +3 / -2 )

The UK attracted 38 million overseas tourists in 2023 - you don't hear our population demanding streets in tourist hotspots be closed to them. 

We do hear concerns from time to time about visitors in some areas. Below is a link about visitors causing trouble in a village near Snowdon.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/articles/cljj9dg1y7no

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

English-speaking tourists are in the minority, with Chinese and Korean being the two main languages spoken by the largest groups of tourists.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

To compare this to what we have in the states, we have between 47 mil to 53 million tourists each year. That is across a much larger country. To have that many people visit Japan would probably make every intersection feel like Shibuya crossing. I live in Maine where we go from 1.3 mil residents with a few thousand hunters coming up in the winter to 15 mil summer visitors. But the state would not thrive as little as it does without all the tourists so it is a double edged sword. Going down 1A from Bangor to Bar Harbor can take 2-3 hours for what is an hour in the winter. The residents have to make the decision if the economic influx is worth the difficulties applied with heavy tourism.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

No trash bins = Japanese streets cleaner

Trash bins = London, NY, Paris (dirty streets)

So why the complain by foreigners? Doesn't make sense.

And the only tourist who don't mind spending from their pockets are Chinese.

Rest of the tourists are like those on the Amazing Race.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Japan is going ballz deep into tourism.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Wayne Denton Trotter

Today 04:25 pm JST

To compare this to what we have in the states, we have between 47 mil to 53 million tourists each year

Yep international!

Now add in domestic.

Florida population 22 million.

170,000 Km2

Japan population 126 million 377,000 km2

Florida gets over 100 million tourists from out of state each year. 123 million in 2023.

So if Florida with 22 million people can handle getting 123 million out of state tourists Japan can handle 60 million.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

Redemption

Today 04:52 pm JST

Japan is going ballz deep into tourism

The rest of the developed countries especially in Europe went that way at least a decade ago!

10% of France, Italy etc... economies are from tourism, service industry including tourism makes up 70% to 80% of the economy in these countries.

Many in Japan long for "the good old days" of lifetime jobs in offices and factories exporting goods around the world!

Sorry this is long gone, there is no bringing it back time to move on and until Japan can provide other service industry services in other languages, Tourism is the best starting point!

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

Recent Japan's LDP regime only want numerals that can justify themselves, has no interest to daily life of ordinal citizen at all.

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

This is an AFP (Agence France-Presse) article. It's good that Japan Today ran it.

The Japanese media does not report that the LDP is planning a huge increase in tourism. Major Japanese cities lack the infrastructure to deal with such an increase. There is little investment being done in local train and bus service. Tourists themselves often talk about how overcrowded Kyoto is. People who do know the Kyoto of 10 or 20 years ago do not realize the extent of the change.

The LDP is indeed spending money, but not on infrastructure. LDP policy is identical to US policy. Big increases in military spending along with a steady flow of funds to Ukraine.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

“The municipality famous for Himeji Castle is mulling making the World Heritage site's admission fees for overseas tourists four times as expensive as those for local residents, local media reported.”

That is discrimination and will not attract tourists, the fees should be the same for everyone. Plus, how would you enforce it? Check resident’s cards?

Can you imagine if Australians were charged a much cheaper rate than foreigners to do a Sydney Harbour Bridge tour? There’d be an outcry from tourists and the Tourism Board wouldn’t allow it.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Interesting because there was a program last week showing all those bad foreign tourists who drink outside and also thrown away papers on the streets etc. They even pointed nationalities. The most drinkers were from Netherlands and UK following by Chechia. Dirt were left by American girls who explained to TV crew that there are no bins so...

They want tourists and on the other hand programs like these show them all in bad way.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Castle in Osaka...Hmmm...how will they treat foreign residents. What price will apply to foreigners in Japan? ¥3000-5000 or as locals ¥1000

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

The customer ( e.g., foreign tourist) is number 1. Don’t forget that.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

EuroJP

June 21 11:55 pm JST

Dirt were left by American girls who explained to TV crew that there are no bins so...

OK that explains why so many here have been calling for trash bins, because certain foreigners cannot understand that it is wrong to throw garbage on the street and in the environment.

So basically lazy, it is too hard to put it in their bag until the convenience store with a trash bins or until they get back to their hotel or home!

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Interesting because there was a program last week showing all those bad foreign tourists who drink outside and also thrown away papers on the streets etc. They even pointed nationalities. The most drinkers were from Netherlands and UK following by Chechia. Dirt were left by American girls who explained to TV crew that there are no bins so...

They want tourists and on the other hand programs like these show them all in bad way.

So is your theory that they should either let tourists do anything they want, or they should ban tourism? And what is it that has convinced you this is better than allowing tourism with some controls?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

AntiquesavingToday 12:23 am JST

So basically lazy, it is too hard to put it in their bag until the convenience store with a trash bins or until they get back to their hotel or home!

Maybe everyone should have clear plastic bags so they can all observe each other's garbage as they haul it around the street, bus, train.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

That is discrimination and will not attract tourists, the fees should be the same for everyone. Plus, how would you enforce it? Check resident’s cards?

No it's not. This has all been well discussed and is totally feasible like many other places around the world.

I would be quite happy to pay 5 times the amount to got in if there was less than half the people in there (even though I am a resident and by the simple production of a recognised Japanese ID - Zairyu, passport, DL, My number, etc.- I would be able to get in for a discounted price)

Last time i went it was horrendous and it wasn't even peak season. The point in the article about the wear and tear is understandable. But you can't fit any more people in there anyway. It was completely rammed - horrible.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

This is like how the J-gov and media point to foreigners as the leading source of crime, though they know the government statistics show otherwise, point the finger at others and you can stop looking at yourself in the mirror.

I live in Saitama and my wife and I have a dog. There is a small koen nearby and there are quite a few dogs from here and some from the surrounding neighborhoods who frequent it and who walk around our area. Often dog excrement is left on the roadside or in the park or people don't douse their canine's urine with water. People have put signs next to the dog poop or used chalk circling it and writing in both Japanese and English "SHAME".

Now something tells me that these signs are directly referenced to me as they had to add English. And the reason for this suspicion is I am the ONLY foreign dog owner in the area, never seen another. Well, it ain't me, never has been me and as a matter of fact, I pick up others' dog pooh as well as use my water, which I add dishsoap to, to douse the pee of others as I have often been aware that if there is a problem, no matter what it is, the fingers will be pointing somewhere in my direction.

So a few months back my wife and I were walking our dog and we were passing by the house of our neighborhood chief, who was the latest victim of a left-behind-pooh attack. He was placing a sign, both in Japanese and of course English, I almost lost my sh*t. My wife said let it go but I just could let this go unanswered. I turned around, pulled out MY dog's poop wrapped in tissue and exposed it to him. I asked him was my dog's pooh similar in size, which it clearly wasn't as the poop in front of his house was twice the girth, from a much larger canine and he nodded in the negative. I then turned around and we continued on our merry way.

Since that encounter there seems to have been an epiphany! The English from these signs has miraculously disappeared. I can't explain it but I think my Japanese wife is finally after a decade and a half getting a clue as to what it's like to be a gaijin in Japan, the boogieman.

Maybe in a way they like having me here, they don't have to look in the mirror.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

3 million tourists is not a problem in a country of 125 million. The non tolerance attitude is.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

As usual an unelected bureaucrat is pushing something that most of the population here don't want - in this case, 60 million tourists a year.

Out of touch and no thought for Japanese people and foreign residents trying to go about their daily lives with numbers of tourists that already aren't at a comfortable level because the most wanted places to visit are big cities like Tokyo that have high population densities but not wide streets in many cases and old cities like the traditional part of Kyoto that was never mean to have so many visitors day and night.

Sure some tourism is necessary for the economy but aren't the numbers already enough without having goals of 60 million? As for some on here thinking it's great to keep jacking up prices for places like Himejii Castle beyond what's reasonable, you need to go to other countries and see how reasonable prices work to attract tourists and local visitors who are satisfied with the experience.

I went to the Irish Republic last year and Malahyde Castle was a great experience for around 2, 200 yen with guides given to groups and all this arranged easily - you just waited until a session was over and then you could go in with other people who were outside the front entrance and could enjoy the grounds beforehand The ticket also gave access to the gardens and hothouses etc.

As for the poster saying disabled people should get into Himejii Castle for free - why? Disabled ramps and special facilties cost money and the problem with all the calling for this group and that group to get access to somewhere for free so loved in the US and western countries is that nothing is ever free. There's always somebody paying more than they should because of others who get in for free.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Blacksamurai

As for the poster saying disabled people should get into Himejii Castle for free - why? Disabled ramps and special facilties cost money and the problem with all the calling for this group and that group to get access to somewhere for free so loved in the US and western countries is that nothing is ever free

Disabled visitors to Himeji Castle have always been free but they can't enter the main keep in a wheelchair.

 A physically challenged person and one carer can enter free of charge by showing the certificate.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Oh yeah and to the posters saying it's fine and dandy for everybody especially tourists to carry around our trash all day until we get home or to a hotel to dispose of it in our trash - that is one of the dumbest things among many dumb things that are posted here.

Again, people need to travel outside Japan and their home country more. I also went to Paris last year, have been a number of times, and nope, they haven't removed their public trash bins. This is a city and country that has experienced terrorist attacks over the last decade in numbers that Japan will never have in a hundred years.

A more truthful reason why there aren't trash bins around very much in Tokyo and other cities in Japan is because the city authorities don't want people using them as their personal trash bins for trash from home. They've had problems with that before when there were public trash bins. Conbini have also stopped supplying trash bins in some cases because they don't want to spend money and time on having to get rid of trash that's not from products bought there.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

anyone here long enough will know that the reason for no trash receptacles in public spaces, train stations, parks and so on is due to the knee-jerk reaction after the Aum sarine gas attack on March 20th, 1995 where sarin gas was dispersed in five train cars on three subway lines that pass through Kasumigaseki Station in Tokyo during the morning rush hour and in a residential area of Matsumoto City, Nagano Prefecture on June 27, 1994.

As a consequence, IMMEDIATELY following the Tokyo attack ALL trash receptacles in train stations were taped up, covered not to be used. This was very soon followed by nearly all public spaces, lobbies of building, government offices, shopping centers and so on. What is most puzzling is why after nearly 30 years, this reaction was never ended by many entities. As far as I remember NO trash bins were used in the attacks, just a fear that they could be used in future attacks but 30 years has passed and NONE. And as a result, and in my humble opinion, this has led to an increase in discarded trash. My guess is the train companies, governments, corporations, department stores, shopping malls, etc... decided to save a few yen on garbage collection, let the people who buy the products be responsible for dealing with their trash except, that would assume people would be responsible.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

"Please come and experience the kindness and beauty of Japan, where we treat all visitors like the honorable guests they are. Oh, and we are taxing you for arriving, increasing taxes on buses and train tickets for you, we've made hotel taxes in bigger cities, are planning to quadruple fees for places like Himeji Castle if you are a foreigner, have banned you from several tourist sights, have put up nets so you can't take photos of places we wish you to praise us for (like Mt. Fuji, which we created and are incredibly proud of!), and are heretofore going to impose many more restrictions, laws against you, fees, and hope that you will soon leave after dropping off your money. But yes, please come. Pretty please? And when done, please conduct one of our many surveys about how much you loved Japan."

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The Japanese Govt. needs to get off of its ass and push for much higher efficiency accross the country. There are literally millions of Japanese working in offices that still require Hankos and use Fax Machines along with writing out form upon form. Better software and better systems will free up millions of people to work in more productive industries like tourism.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I know some tourists do not respect the places they visit. Throwing garbage, not respecting the rules and the culture of the countries they visit. But Japan must seek a balance in wanting tourism to help the economy but also realizing not everyone thinks the same way. I am a Canadian married to a Japanese and I resent that I would have to pay extra for places I go or visit. I go to Japan regularly to visit my family, occasionally we travel to areas of the country to visit friends, visit an Onsen or something no differently than many other Japanese do. But it hurts to think that I would be treated so differently because I am not Japanese but married into a Japanese family.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I know there are thousands of places that worth visiting in Japan and the tourism opportunities are limitless.

But if I am visiting Japan and know I may never return I will want to see Tokyo-Kyoto-Nara, maybe Osaka. And time will be up! So what they are seeking are repeating visitors - good luck to that! Oh, and hope they don't forget to ask the locals first (even of those small villages to be discovered)!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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