Airline employees pass the Quarantine Counter at Narita Airport in Chiba Prefecture. Photo: REUTERS file
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Japan to tighten entry from Britain over new coronavirus strain

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Just to avoid alarm, apparently this will NOT apply to foreign residents of Japan.

11 ( +14 / -3 )

About time.

-2 ( +9 / -11 )

No change in the rules then, just an announcement to make people “feel safe”, which is very telling.

10 ( +16 / -6 )

They are including Japanese nationals as well. Finally, not just targeting foreigners and realizing that the corona virus does not discriminate based on nationality.

20 ( +23 / -3 )

@Luddite: More of a level playing field in fact. Thought this might make you happy for a change, being "equally treated". You really can't help but to complain, can you?

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

In my opinion a travel ban is overbroad and causes a lot of humanitarian problems. I think a PCR test in advance of the flight and upon arrival is sufficient, and mandatory quarantine for anyone testing positive at the airport.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

@Reckless - Fully agree. PCR both ends and quarantine for everybody. No exceptions.

1 ( +8 / -7 )

-3( +1 / -4 )

40 countries quickly barred people arriving from Britain,but Japan doing it days later is bad,uh?

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Are there even people travelling from the UK to Japan?

From UK Gov

Travel to Japan is subject to entry restrictions

-From 24th December, foreign nationals arriving from the UK and in possession of visas issued since 1st October under the ‘Global Residence Track’ will not be permitted to enter Japan.

-Residents of Japan returning from the UK may re-enter, but those on the Short-Term Business Trips scheme will no longer be exempted from quarantine requirements.

-Short-term visitors who have been in the UK and other select countries in the last 14 days are currently unable to enter Japan, unless they are travelling for business purposes or in exceptional circumstances.

-Japan has also suspended its visa waiver system for anyone travelling on a British passport. Single and multiple entry visas issued prior to 20 March also remain suspended.

-Non-Japanese nationals who arrive in Japan will be required to undergo a coronavirus screening test and are required to self-isolate for 14 days on arrival at a designated location (such as a hotel or your own home) and avoid using public transport. You will also need to provide written evidence of a negative COVID-19 test result conducted within 72 hours of your flight departure time, and and will be asked to install a Covid-19 tracking app if arriving from the UK.

https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/japan

8 ( +9 / -1 )

@zichi - Yes, there are. I know several, Japanese, PR's and on Work Visas who have done the trip. over the last couple of months. Quite painlessly, if following the rules and requirements. I'm reliably informed that the ANA flight that departed from Heathrow last Saturday was a good 60% full. That will not have been with connected BJ's announcement as that came at 4PM - 2 hours before check in closed for that flight.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

That’s of no use, the new mutated virus doesn’t only come directly from Britain or with people who seem to be British, in contrary it will distribute and intrude mostly via everything or everybody else, insignificantly time delayed. Why? Well, it has been transported into the British isles beforehand and is already known on the continent for about half a year, although almost undetected or of no specific interest until now when the UK numbers rose visible.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

@zichi - Yes, there are. Some of us have to go back for a tiny "visit" not because we want to see Liverpool play WBA on a screen nearer Anfield but because elderly family members get sick. You DO appreciate that as people get older, they get sick, right - if only from personal experience? Us hometown got the 'rona pretty bad.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato said Japanese nationals arriving from Britain from Sunday will be required to take virus tests within 72 hours before departure and submit the results upon arrival.

So, finally, Japanese nationals are getting the same treatment as non-Japanese residents! Seems that passport doesn't give you added immunity after all.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

The government can't impose testing on Japanese nationals. They xan't prevent nationals entering the country.

-9 ( +3 / -12 )

The Government DOES impose testing and has been since April upon arrival in Japan. What it can't do is deny entry to their own citizens. The difference up until now has been the requirement for foreign nationals to ALSO have PCR test 72 hours before departure and have the required form - which is be downloaded from the MOFA website. That has now been extended to Japanese from arrivals from the UK. No one is talking about denial of entry for Japanese Nationals.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

theResident

@zichi - Yes, there are. I know several, Japanese, PR's and on Work Visas who have done the trip. over the last couple of months.

The numbers of Brits travelling between Japan and UK and back must be low. The total Brit population here is only 15,000. Japanese had less restrictions travelling to the UK and non on their return.

The Brit tourists come for the food, it's No1. Who would have thought?

https://www.statista.com/statistics/1069190/japan-leading-travel-motivations-british-tourists/

Overseas Residents' Visits to Japan in Oct was 27,400, down 98.9%.

https://www.tourism.jp/en/tourism-database/stats/

Visitors from the UK was just 300 for the period May-Oct.

https://www.tourism.jp/en/tourism-database/stats/inbound/#region-courtry

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Though supporting the latest restriction, I've always felt odd when the authorities try to curb the spead by import according to nationality/visa status. As the virus doesn't care nationality, the decision about selective entry control seems more political than epidemological. It would be more reasonable and effective to control quantity or the total arrival numbers (and period of stay). Of course, such a policy is not at all unique to Japan.

I can't trust much about PCR testing. Mandatory quaranting upon arrival and travel insurance covering full treatment fees (for international visitors) are significant. At the same time the host side needs to further beef up health care services if they are to welcome more visitors.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Zichi:

1: Passengers will not only be Japanese or British. Air ties between Europe and Japan have been severely curtailed since the Pandemic began, London and Frankfurt having the majority of the few flights that have been taking place - There will have been plenty of transit traffic from other European countries and possibly beyond.

2: Tourists cannot enter full stop. Visa waiver has been suspended for a long time ago.

3: The 'visitors'' fropm the UK will have only been here on visas issued in very exceptional circumstances. I do know of one person who manged to get a visa in July after a family death here (unconnected to Covid) - so I would in no way dispute your number of 300!

4: As has been pointed out to you above - there are many reasons might HAVE to travel. I doubt if anyone WANTS to travel right now. The people who I've know have travelled have all done for important business or family issues.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

theResident

The numbers of non Japanese travelling from the UK to Japan remains low then. Most are people returning who reside here.

"Currently, entry from Britain is limited to Japanese nationals and foreigners with resident status as well as short-term business travelers. Tourists remain barred."

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Chief Cabinet Secretary Kato Katsunobu told reporters on Wednesday that Japan's stepped-up measures will take effect on Thursday.

Kato said Japan will refuse new entries from the UK for the time being.

He said Japanese and non-Japanese residents who take short business trips of up to seven days to the UK will be asked once again to self-quarantine for 14 days when they return home or enter Japan.

Such travelers are currently exempted from quarantines under certain conditions.

Kato also said Japanese nationals returning from the UK will be asked from December 27 to provide proof that they have been tested within 72 hours of leaving the country.

The testing for returning Japanese nationals is new then?

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Nah, I'm just fed up that I won't be having black pudding, eccles cakes, Lancashire crumbly and Black Sheep beer at Christmas this year.

I admit to never having heard of them, but would like to try. I do know British fish and chips and especially Whisky are impossible to resist!

I hope the UK, with the vaccines now started, recovers soon from this horrible disaster, and Brits can come and enjoy Japan like they always have.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

absolutely, please ban them from entering Japan.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Apart from Japan, only New Zealand (after an overt and brutal lockdown), China, Macau, Cambodia, Vietnam, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, UAE and Qatar. I doubt that any country in Europe or the Americas will avoid a lockdown during this period.

The economic impact in Macau, South East Asia and South Asia is going to be severe from previous lockdowns, and most both Qatar and UAE are suffering bad long term due to oil prices and travel bans. Taiwan is basically an extraterritorial province of Japan as well.

Japan is on a different league to the rest of the world. There is a reason why Tokyo has been voted the best place to live in the world for 2020.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

They should block the Olympic a dream that will never should cause me true under a pandemic but go block brittan. Stuff starting to sound propaganda ish

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

This is fine by me.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

For once, I think the Japanese authorities have done the right things. They've stopped people with no ties to Japan from entering - I'm sorry, but priority must be given to those who actually live there and are already working there. And they've finally realized that businessmen and Japanese are no more immune to the virus than the ordinary non-Japanese person.

Yes, Japan can't block their citizens from returning, but I highly doubt an airline would be willing to allow a Japanese who has tested positive from boarding the plane. I sure as hell wouldn't want to get on the same plane. Japanese also need to be tested prior to boarding, which is what they'll have to do now.

oxycodin:

They should block the Olympic a dream that will never should cause me true under a pandemic but go block brittan.

I have no idea what 'brittan' is.

A shout-out to Australia on their quick work. In the UK, Johnson is seen as more and more useless as time goes by. Total fiasco. The November lockdown should never have ended so quickly. And don't get me started on Trump - he doesn't even pretend to care anymore.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

@Zichi

https://www.indeed.com/career-advice/pay-salary/congressman-salary

You misinformed people in an earlier post. I worked for the state department. All of our benefits follow the same rules. SS, FERS etc. And we are following the same rules about the stricter quarantine coming from UK to Japan.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I suspect the new covid strain as come across the English Channel FROM France to the UK because all the outbreaks originated in Kent around the channel port.UK genome research is second best behind Denmark so just because it was detected first in the UK doesnt not mean it originated in the UK.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Kato also said Japanese nationals returning from the UK will be asked from December 27 to provide proof that they have been tested within 72 hours of leaving the country.

Ha,ha. Good luck anyone getting a private test for travelling over the Christmas and New Year holidays.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

SandyBeachHeaven

@Zichi

https://www.indeed.com/career-advice/pay-salary/congressman-salary

You misinformed people in an earlier post. I worked for the state department. All of our benefits follow the same rules. SS, FERS etc. And we are following the same rules about the stricter quarantine coming from UK to Japan.

Sorry I don't know what you mean? What post?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Yes, good idea because Japanese nationals are immune to the new strain and others are not.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The standard UK test is not PCR so people will have to go to one of a few private clinics to get it. It costs something like 250 quid.

Britain has fared poorly during Covid-19, but I agree that there is no need to assume this variant originated in the UK itself.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

tottenhaminremnants

@zichi - Yes, there are. Some of us have to go back for a tiny "visit" not because we want to see Liverpool play WBA on a screen nearer Anfield but because elderly family members get sick. You DO appreciate that as people get older, they get sick, right - if only from personal experience? Us hometown got the 'rona pretty bad.

Yes but I was only saying the numbers of people travelling to the UK and back here were probably small numbers because of the severe restrictions.

What was your experience of travelling to the UK and back? Several Brits on this forum have cancelled their Christmas trip back to the UK.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Beginning Sunday, the government will additionally require Japanese citizens to submit upon entry a negative result from a virus test taken within 72 hours before departure — a measure already mandatory for foreign nationals with valid residential permits seeking to re-enter the country. If they can’t submit the test result, they will be asked to stay in designated accommodation provided by the authorities and quarantine for 14 days.

Both Japanese and returning foreign nationals also need to pledge to download a government contract tracing app or maintain their location information records.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Suga government's response is insufficient as before.

Spokesman Kato is only "specialist" of sophistry and excuse.

They don't stop to entry from other countries where confirmed new corona virus strain.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Someone who knows what they are talking about on the new mutation; https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/dec/23/travel-bans-effective-new-covid-variant

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I can't believe PCR tests are still being used as the 'gold standard' when they don't indicate active infections, only the presence of RNA which can be there for months after the virus is still active: https://off-guardian.org/2020/11/20/portuguese-court-rules-pcr-tests-unreliable-quarantines-unlawful/

Antigen tests are far more accurate: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/lab/resources/antigen-tests-guidelines.html

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

@zichi: you clearly did not read anything I posted. You have offered no new info this evening that has not been well documented. I am not being rude.

@luddite: I offered you details..they are still doing a same day / 24 hour test with required paperwork, everyday but the 25th. You declined my offer of info, but continue to claim it does not exist. You accuse me of bringing nothing to this forum, so now I present clear facts and you therefore ignore me. You therefore are the ignorant one.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

theResident

@zichi: you clearly did not read anything I posted. You have offered no new info this evening that has not been well documented. I am not being rude.

You said Japanese nationals were required to have a Covid-19 test to return to the country. From reading various government web sites that wasn't correct. But from coming Sunday they are requested to have a test. They can't be refused entry if they don't.

If they can’t submit the test result, they will be asked to stay in designated accommodation provided by the authorities and quarantine for 14 days.

Both Japanese and returning foreign nationals also need to pledge to download a government contract tracing app or maintain their location information records. In the case of Japanese nationals it will only be a request.

I understand the situation changes frequently so I want to know the latest.

I also said fewer people are travelling from the UK to Japan. I'm not wrong on that point too.

You are entitled to your opinions I read your comments but I prefer to do my own research and check government websites. Forgive me if I don't consider you has a total authority.

One point we can agree on is that international travel has become very difficult and restrictive. That is likely to continue well into next year.

Hard to see how Japan will allow foreign visitors to attend the Olympics.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

This virus is never going away like the flu and the issue here is that you won't know if you have the flu or covid when your feeling ill under the weather. Thats the biggest problem I think Japan will face very soon.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

What happens with aircrews flying into Japan?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Zicbi: Everybody, including Japanese Nationals has had to ha e a PCR test on entry to Japan since April. Period. Foreigners were required (regardless of visa or resident status) to ALSO have a certified PCR test in country of departure 72 hours prior. For departures from the UK that now also applies to Japanese passport holders returning. What is so hard for you to grasp here?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

I'm sorry mate, but you live down in the boonies, and I am living /working with people who are taking these trips. I may not be an 'authority', but I do have a little real world knowledge here.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

The world should act globally and close all airports for at least a month (only cargo allowed in) contain the virus, deal with it, find a solution, share information globally and then, maybe it will go away or at least we have a handle on it

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Arrivals from the UK

Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato held a press conference at the prime minister's office on Dec. 23, 2020.

Nov 50/day (1500/month). 40/day (1200/month) were Japanese citizens. Non Japanese 10/day (300/month).

Dec 150/day (4,650/month). 140/day were Japanese citizens. Non Japanese 10/day (300/month).

13 Japanese citizens from the UK between Dec1-20 were infected with Covid on arrival.

At present, all people entering Japan from the U.K. are required to take coronavirus tests at airports and other points of entry.

Non Japanese are banned from travelling from the UK until further notice.

From next week, Japanese coming from Britain would be asked to submit a certificate to confirm they had tested negative for COVID-19 within 72 hours of their departure.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

You think 13 is a shocking number? Really? Personally, I'm surprised the number did not have an extra zero.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

But did you not state a fact that Japanese Citizens could not be compelled to have a PCR test at port of entry?? Wonder how they detected those 13 cases.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

and I don't need you just constantly retyping what I've already said. We can all read the websites - but do you actually know and work with people who have been travelling internationally recently? I think not.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Well I guess JT allows everyone to post not just those claiming to be experts. I haven’t retyped anything you posted.

I said I thought the travel figures from the UK were low, Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato confirms that. I will take his words before your limited experience on the issue.

If citizens refuse to take a test they are required to quarantine in a government approved place for 14 days. But citizens are tested on arrival not on departure. Infected people are allowed to fly. Non Japanese are required to be tested 72 hours before leaving and produce a certificate.

Whether you agree or not, all are able to post on all posts, regardless of those claiming to be experts. You are free to ignore my posts if you wish.

You think 13 is a shocking number? Really? Personally, I'm surprised the number did not have an extra zero.

There isn’t an extra zero because even the numbers of Japanese travellers is low from the UK

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

theResident

but do you actually know and work with people who have been travelling internationally recently?

To answer your question I actually do because I have many art clients, mostly people in charge of a business or owners of a business. I also know large groups like doctors who need to travel overseas. Your assumptions are wrong. I frequently receive calls from clients when they are heading to the airport to fly out somewhere.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

In that case - surely you can state an accurate state of play rather than quoting Government Ministers. Real life old chap - quote real life. You are a constant contradiction.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Somewhere? Quote people headed HERE. Quote people who have completed the journey as per article. You can't, and you haven't.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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