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Tourists enjoy 1st Saturday after Japan scraps COVID border controls

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people no longer wear masks in Switzerland.

Which is basically the same in 99% of the world.

he was not worried now as he had received three COVID-19 vaccine shots.

I hope this Guy understands that he can get infected, can get sick and can also spread the virus, even he is 3x vaccinated. (which was already explained millions of times).

"I saw some foreign tourists and I feel as if our pre-pandemic life is coming back," said Shinya Kato, a 27-year old company employee from Chiba Prefecture. "There might be another wave later so I want to enjoy myself as much as I can while the disease's spread is still low."

I can not judge this statement from Shinya Kato.

Is he happy that tourists are coming back, or is he worried that because of the tourists the next wave will come and the spread of the disease will increase again?

-2 ( +11 / -13 )

after the government scrapped coronavirus border controls.

So I don't need three shots or a 72 hour ore departure negative covid test now then?

-12 ( +5 / -17 )

after the government scrapped coronavirus border controls.

So I don't need three shots or a 72 hour ore departure negative covid test now then?

Plus the MySOS App.

Which, according to some of our business travelers I talked to, seems really to be a pain in the ass.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

He probably does. You need to be living in a bubble to miss out on that detail

You nailed the point Elvis.

But unfortunately many people do live in a bubble.

Especially some vaccine addict people, who are still thinking the vaccine is the silver bullet and put them under a complete safe protection and nothing can happen to them.

Yes, such people are still around, even it is proved that they are completely wrong.

1 ( +10 / -9 )

As a foreigner without a mask, i was interviewed in Akihabara by some TV crew and gave them an earful about masks and the detrimental effect they are going to have on society, especially for the young, as well as bunch of other stuff I though they probably weren't expecting. Funnily enough, the lady interviewer seemed to agree with what i was saying. Somehow, don't think those thoughts are going to be aired since I went way off the expected script.

-6 ( +14 / -20 )

Although the vaccines don't necessarily prevent infection, they do seem to help reduce the effects and/or numbers of those who get long Covid, which is my biggest concern.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

It is not "our pre-pandemic life" until the useless masking stops. Welcome to dystopian Japan, where in spite of millions of mask wear minions, the coronavirus variants spread without a care in the world. Very few hospitalized, this is just ridiculous.

5 ( +12 / -7 )

Did anyone else notice as soon as immigration opened up the average air ticket price from the East Coast of North America jumped $500 !

1 ( +4 / -3 )

I was out and about in the city yesterday and saw a few tourists, some masked and some not. I had my parents with me, and none of use were masked and nobody gave us any grief about it. Not even in their hotel, where there are mask signs all over the place. Lots of people in the lobby lounge were also mask-free. The only place where the hotel insisted on any form of "protection" was when getting food from the buffet.

Good to see also that a small but growing number of Japanese were also going maskless, outside at least. I hope that as more maskless foreign tourists appear in the crowds, more and more Japanese will summon up the courage to ditch these things.

0 ( +8 / -8 )

The tourists can come in. But, please, please wear MASKS !!

-6 ( +7 / -13 )

Japan needs to cancel the MySOS app and replace it with a simplified one modeled after the USA's ESTA procedures that have been used for at least two decades. It should be accepted at immigration as an app or on paper. https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov/

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Why are they talking about “ saturday “ / weekend “? Do tourists need to wait for the weekend like the rest of us? I don’t think so. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday… it’s all the same to them; actually Mon-Fri is a better time to be out there because that’s when everybody’s at work; unless they need to meet some Japanese friend who works in here. Anyway, on one hand, it’s exciting and refreshing to see things returning to normal and it’s good to see all the tourists finally enjoying their trips; ( if they chose to come here, that’s because they’re interested in Japan and they like it in here ( that should make us all happy, Japanese people included ) ); on the other hand, certain places won’t be so quiet anymore,

BUT, have fun, everyone, and welcome(!) :)

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Wearing a mask, which he said was a bit tight around the ears, Paletzki, 49,

Good health practice and respectful for the local population

Because there were reporters all over the place, when the reporters are gone so will the masks be gone. Already, there have been reports of problems with tourist in Asukusa.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

tora Today  08:42 am JST

As a foreigner without a mask, i was interviewed in Akihabara by some TV crew and gave them an earful about masks and the detrimental effect they are going to have on society, especially for the young, as well as bunch of other stuff I though they probably weren't expecting. Funnily enough, the lady interviewer seemed to agree with what i was saying. Somehow, don't think those thoughts are going to be aired since I went way off the expected script.

Good on ya! When I watch those interviews with people on the street, the ones they show on TV invariably conform to the preferred narrative, as if to manufacture consent as Chomsky noted. I wonder how many people give an opposing view that never makes it to air. It'll be interesting to see what happens if and when they start interviewing foreign tourists to get their opinions.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

If I am interviewed I’ll say that in line with the Health Ministry and the PM I don’t wear a mask outside.

From the Health Minstry's website:

Mask Use

Wear a mask when meeting with the elderly or spending time in a hospital. Remove your mask if you do not need it outdoors, to prevent heat stroke in summer.

■Outdoors: You do not need to wear a mask outdoors when you are approximately 2 meters apart from others, or when you are not talking at a distance of less than 2 meters.

■Indoors: You do not need to wear a mask indoors when you are approximately 2 meters apart from others and when you are not talking.

■For Children: Children don’t need to wear masks at a distance of Approximately 2 meters from others. All preschool children are not required to wear a mask.

https://www.mhlw.go.jp/stf/covid-19/mask.html

3 ( +4 / -1 )

 It'll be interesting to see what happens if and when they start interviewing foreign tourists to get their opinions.

It would be more interesting to see if and when they interview Japanese who are not in the Tourist sector to get their opinions. Would it not?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I hope it helps bring the yen back to last year benchmark.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

As a foreigner without a mask, i was interviewed in Akihabara by some TV crew and gave them an earful about masks and the detrimental effect they are going to have on society, especially for the young, as well as bunch of other stuff I though they probably weren't expecting. Funnily enough, the lady interviewer seemed to agree with what i was saying. Somehow, don't think those thoughts are going to be aired since I went way off the expected script

I only write LOL when I mean it.

LOL.

This part got me:

Funnily enough the lady interviewer seemed to agree

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

It would be more interesting to see if and when they interview Japanese who are not in the Tourist sector to get their opinions. Would it not?

They already interview Japanese from all walks of life, but rarely if ever broadcast the opinions of Japanese who think that mask wearing is unnecessary. What do the media have to fear from well informed mask opponents?

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

I chuckle when I see whole families masked up in their people carriers- it just shows an inability to understand science adequately…

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

 "There might be another wave later so I want to enjoy myself as much as I can while the disease's spread is still low."

Huh??? Still trying to blame the foreigners for the spread even after having the border closed and the largest amount of infections per capita in the world???

Masks off, open up…fully!! no discriminatory triple vax or PCR only!

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

I chuckle when I see whole families masked up in their people carriers- it just shows an inability to understand science adequately…

I understand science to a point and a basic understanding of mathematics can be useful in this area.

What were those odds you got from the bookies again…was it “6/3”? ;)

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

"There might be another wave later so I want to enjoy myself as much as I can while the disease's spread is still low."

Normalcy returns (hopefully indefinitely) and, for right now at least, we have every reason to be happy and enjoy ourselves. : )

Just back from a matsuri that was cancelled for two years. Off to Yokosuka in a while for the fireworks.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Commodore

Sounds splendid my dear fellow. At the moment I’m in Suage 3 in Sapporo awaiting my lamb soup curry. Double plus good times right now. Noticed a few tourists in the city center during my stay, most appeared to be from the USA.

Seems like most are sick and tired of the negativity and want a good old jolly up and I couldn’t agree more.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

There something Monty pythonesque about getting excited about spotting a foreigner.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Wearing masks, after more than 2 years of the pandemic, does not help prevent the spread of the virus.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Plus the MySOS App.

> Which, according to some of our business travelers I talked to, seems really to be a pain in the ass.

The MySOS app is a joke. Not only is it a pain and a half to use, upon arrival, when you show them your blue screen, which is the color that clears you of everything, they hand you a blue piece of paper to show to immigration, customs etc. Yup. A physical piece of paper. What's the point of the app if you're going to get a piece of paper in the end?

As for the masks...honestly I doubt Japan will ever stop wearing them at this point.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Nice to see folks enjoying one last burst of summer weather in Osaka today despite some in my local park wearing full downcoats and woolen hats or jogging and playing tennis with masks on.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Took a day trip to Sakurajima yesterday. Airports were refreshingly busy, but the island itself (not actually an island anymore, but what the hey) was surprisingly subdued.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I think most foreign tourists - and foreign residents in Japan - are fine with masks in certain settings. It’s just the absurd, ridiculous, levels that people go to that becomes a massive wind up. Why not be sensible with masks? As the government clearly says, you don’t need them outside. You certainly don’t need them when riding a bike in 40 degrees heat!

1 ( +4 / -3 )

I see there's "mask" discussion going on here..... pitty

-9 ( +0 / -9 )

"Japan removed its 50,000-person daily entry cap and its ban on individual travelers and non-prearranged trips, allowing foreign tourists to travel freely in the country."

And likewise admitting the restrictions were nonsense to begin with.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Here in the U.S. Outside I "rarely" see anyone at all wearing a mask...almost never...Inside stores, I might see 3 or 4, persons who may be older age or have existsting conditions..otherwise NO ONE wears masks...I have my 2 shots and 2 boosters...I am not afraid....wearing outside in Japan I think ,,the time has COME..take them off..

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Most people in Japan apparently accept the reopening of borders. Even the usual suspects brigading social media with their edgy rising sun profile pictures are seemingly absent this time, at least from the English-speaking corners. This is a good thing.

Masks are essentially voluntary outside of work and pretty much always have been. You can choose to wear one or not.

The fact that the borders remained closed for such an excessively long period of time and also that the governments were still pursuing reduced dining hours and booze bans as late as earlier this year are very regrettable. In a fairer world, there would greater political consequences. But as always, the LDP is likely to slither away unscathed.

Questions do remain however whether 3x vaccinated/PCR negative status are effective or even logical as a means of gatekeeping.

Since it's pointless to expect anything to happen to the LDP, at the very least, the credibility of the vaccine manufacturers/pharmaceutical lobby/paid shills needs to suffer.

So start by getting rid of MySOS. It's not stopping Covid, it's not convenient, and it's not even necessary.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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