Gov't calls for longer New Year holiday to curb virus spread


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Great if you are a full time employee with a generous allotment of paid holidays. However, for the already hard hit contract,freelance and p/t workers living paycheck to paycheck it will mean smaller paychecks to start off the year.

29 ( +30 / -1 )

The Calander printers, the Calander printers? There is not enough time to print. It's going to cause confusion! Oh the horror the horror....

18 ( +20 / -2 )

Well over due, holidays are so short it's exhausting doing all that's required to do Culturally, nice to have some extra time to relax. And most people I know have years of paid holidays they have never taken.

16 ( +18 / -2 )

This dude is thinking about the economy and all the extra cash that will be spent and not about the virus!

15 ( +23 / -8 )

More time to spread it far and wide.

14 ( +22 / -8 )

The government should lead by example and first give the millions of civil workers such an extended break.

But they won't.

14 ( +15 / -1 )

I don't think this is a good idea at all. On the news last night, they interviewed some people who were concerned about a loss in income, which is certainly a factor for temp workers, non-regular and contract workers as well as freelancers. In my company, sales people would have four fewer days to work, meaning it would be hard to meet their monthly target (which means less commission).

Also, people are not going to stay at home or wherever they go from Dec 30-Jan 11. They are still going to be traveling, so that does not help contain the virus, if that is supposed to be the intention. The shrines will be just as crowded, as well as shops offering New Year sales.

Maybe the idea is just to try and stimulate the economy with the Go To Travel and Eat campaigns.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

If it's coming from Nishimura, it's only about his Go to project. The more that participate the better...takes us for idiots? It's so obvious.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Extra time off, great.

Pity for all the non-regular workers without holiday pay.

If people do stay home for long enough, I wonder if we will have a mini baby boom in September?

9 ( +10 / -1 )

If the gov't is so worried about the spread of the virus and protecting people, I would like to see them cancel or ban all bonnenkai parties. Those will be super spreader events. But that will never happen as it will hurt the economy.

As someone said above people will not stay at home during this time. Do you think they will not all rush to shrines on New Years Eve or New Years Day irrespective of what the authorities want.

I really have no idea what the purpose of this is, but I really don't think it will work at all.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

It’s an interesting idea. I think Japan should try this but consider some of the other ideas such as

Ban govt. bonenkai and encourage companies to do the same (many of my clients have done this already)

Find some way to ease economic impact on the part time workers.

Incentivize in some way staggered travel

Extend on both the front end and back end (Provide some extra days early) so travel to people’s hometown can be staggered also.

My experience withe New Year in Japan is it is quiet. Would be nice to give families more time together.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Great, now, instead of just visiting one set of in-laws people can visit both! Spreading whatever virus they might have to two areas of the country.

And, after starting a week later, Everyone will end up doing quadruple overtime to make up for the lost week.

Unless, of course as often happens, companies say:

'Sure, take the extra week off. Of course, you'll have to work 80 hours the week you come back to make up for lost time. OR, you (the worker) can come back early? Maybe? Like, say, a week early? I mean we (management) will start Jan. 4. And you?'

I wonder if Nishimura has ever lived in Japan.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

longer New Year holiday to curb virus spread

It's nothing to curb virus, it's about Go To Travel

7 ( +9 / -2 )

If people do stay home for long enough, I wonder if we will have a mini baby boom in September?

Quite the reverse as already noted in an article from JT here earlier this week. The birth rate is actually forecast to drop further.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

the holiday would have to be months long, another day or two isn't going to do much.

Better to focus on increased testing from less than 5000 a day to 50,000 a day for just Tokyo, and ten times that a day for the entire nation. Strangely absent is the real work of science versus quite literally symbolic gestures aren't going to be that useful

6 ( +7 / -1 )


However, for the already hard hit contract,freelance and p/t workers living paycheck to paycheck it will mean smaller paychecks to start off the year.

My excitement for some real time off made me overlook that obvious and huge downside. That huge reduction in pay in February will be a pain to start the year. Especially since it's also around the time to pay taxes.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Everyday I go to work, I contend with the 3 Cs...

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Funny.nobody cares or thinks about the private companies needing to pick up this bill and about the fact that the rest of the world will be working as from jan 04th and so the loss of business will be important.

mand of course still everyone will return from holiday the same 2 days, only a week later.

i never understood the myth of hardworking Japan. Never lived in a country with more national holidays and most employees now do take Up their, and rightly so, holidays.

the economy in Japan is the worst I have seen it and this extra week is a luxury Japan can not afford

5 ( +6 / -1 )

This is good news but let’s not kid ourselves. The government’s only motivation is to have people travel MORE in order to revive the economy. I find it very hard to find evidence in the news of the government trying to curb the spread. It seems they are doing everything possible to spread it - all for the precious yen. Business travels not being required to quarantine as an example.

5 ( +7 / -2 )


4 ( +5 / -1 )

This is an excellent plan. Gives people time to recuperate, a proper chance to quarantine, and it has the potential to ease how people travel since they can now spread it out over a larger time. Let's hope they go through with it.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

As usual sadly, ideas generated, thinking caps NOWHERE in sight!

Reeks of desperation!

4 ( +5 / -1 )

As a NZer this policy is perplexing; If you have a longer holiday, aren't you just prolonging the inevitable?

It's getting worse everywhere, and NZ has been back to normal life for months? You have to bite the bullet and lock down .

3 ( +5 / -2 )

and give People more chances for go out party, have fun, do tinder, hook ups, go to eat, go to travel. while ovt will never TEST more people.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

For business person who’s worked at foreign related companies in Japan or had business with foreign companies

as the second choice it might be better to take long holidays from Christmas to early January? Which adapts to western holiday winter season.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Hmm, many (most?) people going to home towns will be parents taking kids to see grandparents. Are schools going to close for an extra week too?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

As 40%- 60% of workers are on hand to mouth Saleries, That's on the government. They need to do a better job for the people. That is their job apparently.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Then they’d also need to extend school holidays otherwise it’s just the parents taking time off waiting for the kids to come home from school.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Obviously Japan Today readers all live in the Tokyo area, or they would know that most schools outside of the capital do not go back on January 4th but have a much longer holiday. So no, parents won't be at home waiting for little Taro and Junko to come home.

But it is still a piss poor idea. Why can't the government tell people that for once they will have to resist going home, much like happened at Golden week, all in the hopes of keeping the virus at bay until a vaccine can be found.

Is that not the prudent thing to do?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Wonderful news!!!

1 ( +3 / -2 )

To dissipate crowds and collectivistic behaviors (subject to virus transmission risk), Japan's public holidays and schedules should be more "individuated". The key is to let individual workers take paid holidays freely whenever they like.

Meanwhile Japan better cut or realign some of its public holidays to stop commanding when and how long to work or rest "en masse". Some designated holidays are losing original meanings and cultural significance (e.g. a holiday falling on calendar weekend is shifted to next Monday). More public holidays primarily benefit school or public officials while service industry workers or parents raising school kids get rather busier.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Since the virus has started there has been only 215,500 roughly tests been done for all of Japan and 37 percent of those tests have come back positive and 2 hundred plus deaths since July that we know of.

What we need is free testing for all, find out how many cases there are really, and so, it cannot spread over the New Year's Holiday.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Can I get a “Hell yeah?!”


0 ( +2 / -2 )

good news....or......they could, you know, spread out vacation time for everyone and not make it all at one time!!!!

some people go on break in Nov, Jan, or whenever! rotate holiday times! so simple!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Is it still necessary to mention the cruise ship cases in every COVID-19 story?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

"The government should lead by example and first give the millions of civil workers such an extended break..." It's damned if they do, damned it they don't, as komuin are paid with tax funds, and citiaens' groups will complain. Doing so would also be a tacit admission that the country can run for a week w/o the bureaucracy - perish that thought - and given the level of red tape involved in everything here, it might actually be impossible. Ever try getting paperwork done over golden week, obon or new year? Don't bother.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Two weeks vacation and another ¥100,000 for everyone.

0 ( +1 / -1 )


Two weeks vacation and another ¥100,000 for everyone.

Now you're talking my language!

But what about schools/kindergartens? I wonder of those would be closed too?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Hopefully this virus will help promote the idea of phased holiday seasons where everyone gets the time off just not at the same time. If the companies are worried about tradition, give the traditional days off to those ranked by seniority or (better) merit.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Can I get a “Hell yeah?!”

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

fat chance

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

This means more days OFF for government and public servants, that's all.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Best news I have heard in weeks! I like this! More time off from work???? Oh yes!! Cant wait to for new years so i can chillax and get away from work.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

The Calander printers, the Calander printers? There is not enough time to print. It's going to cause confusion! Oh the horror the horror....

Since NOT public holidays,it wouldn't make a difference.Plus with January being exam season,not what exam takers would want either if schools were delayed a week.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Most will be moving around on the 29/30/31, even if the gov requests companies to restart a week or to later.

Makes no difference.

Also, restaurants are already jam packed everywhere and trains alike, as the gov has no control over maximum numbers/percentage for these as it should be happening.

Apart from the extra holidays that japanese companies must start taking in order for the work-life balance to be a thing in Japan, this strategy of starting on the 12th seems pointless, considering everything else that is happening, or not happening, in order to reduce - not official - infections.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

The rest of the world will be starting work on the 4th. If Nishimura's plan goes into effect, Japan will basically still be closed while everyone is back at work "making money." How is that contributing to the economy? Customs for imports and exports will be closed, TSE will be closed, the banks will be closed. They've been talking about children falling behind in their studies, so schools are also going to be closed? Nishimura has no clue, he just wants to tout that his Go to project is a success.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Hell yeah! Keep in mind this will only apply to employees at big companies who have a lot of paid holidays to cover it and they will spend a lot of money at restaurants etc. which will help workers in such a Places.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

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