divinda comments

Posted in: Tokyo reports 2,377 new coronavirus cases; nationwide tally 21,784 See in context

@Rain Man

You asked why there aren't 10,000 cases per day.

I pointed out that if they only test 3003/day, then finding 10,000/day is impossible.

(not to mention, 2377 cases out of 3003 tests is about a 80% positive rate. Thats ridiculous.)

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Posted in: Tokyo reports 2,377 new coronavirus cases; nationwide tally 21,784 See in context

But weren’t the cases supposed to be over 10,000 a day now because of the selfish golden week travellers?

Yesterday Tokyo tested 3003 people.

The day before was 7600.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

Posted in: Countries with lower-than-expected vaccination rates show unusually negative attitudes to vaccines See in context

Places with low vaccination rates for some bizarre reason also have a negative opinion about vaccines?

Wow, I never would have guessed that!. This is major ground-breaking research!

I mean, the discovery of this correlation between two concepts that are otherwise completely un-related utterly blows my mind!

Certainly deserves a Nobel Prize.

19 ( +20 / -1 )

Posted in: Finnish PM says joining NATO will strengthen security See in context

This probably isn't what Russia had in mind with their desire for NATO to be finnished.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan FY2021 long-term debt hits new high above ¥1,000 tril See in context

Next stop yen 140 to a dollar!

No wonder everybody is selling yen for the Dollar and Swiss Franc.

Goldman Sachs today stated that they think the yen is now oversold at 130/USD, and would be a good deal for hedging against a recession despite BoJ's continued easing.

Translation: one of the world's biggest investment banks just signaled to sell your dollars to buy yen because the yen is a bargain, and even though the Japanese printing press is cranked to eleven, its a safer bet than relying on the crumbling US economy.

(what was unmentioned is that when the wind shifts like this, and everyone starts funneling their dollars to yen, it puts huge downward pressure on the exchange rate, so once it gets going, within a couple months or even a few weeks it may be back at 115/USD or even lower.)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Ex-lawmaker arrested over illegal shinkansen ticket receipt See in context

...Japan Rail pass, which is free for Diet members, including access to the first-class Green Cars.

Wait a sec...

Diet members get a free Green Car rail pass on top of a 1 million yen MONTHLY travel and communication allowance, which is on top of their salary and bonus.

Here's more about their travel budgets:

https://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/14545088

21 ( +22 / -1 )

Posted in: Tokyo reports 3,809 new coronavirus cases; Osaka 4,192 See in context

An all time high today in Okinawa. Tourism in the islands is a double edged sword.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Posted in: Salsa & Avocado Smoky Whopper kickstarts Burger King Japan’s new Smoky Whopper lineup See in context

Plus, they have onion rings

Yep, plus one for the O-rings!

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Salsa & Avocado Smoky Whopper kickstarts Burger King Japan’s new Smoky Whopper lineup See in context

Just wish it wasn't so damn expensive in Japan. In the west BK and MD prices are similar. Don't understand why it has to be so expensive here.

Regular Whopper Prices (individual burger only, non-set, from BK website):

Japan: 540 yen

US: $4.19 (which is 535 yen as of right now, at rate of 127.6yen/USD)

But McD got BK beat.

Prices for a Big Mac at McD can vary in the US, but its average about $4.89 (burger only, non-set) right now.

In Japan a Big Mac is 390 yen, or (with the current exchange) just $3.05 !!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan considers 'quasi-refugee' status for people fleeing conflicts See in context

While here, the quasi-refugees may get to experience one of the quasi-state-of-emergencies, or maybe they can go visit one of Japan's quasi-national parks

3 ( +19 / -16 )

Posted in: How to make summer 2022 travel plans that actually happen See in context

Yeah, stay domestic and enjoy the lack of foreign tourists while it lasts. Reminds me of the 90s and early 00s when I first came and it was be rare to spot other foreigners outside (or even inside) big cities. Certainly lots of places to go.

As far as Go To, I heard they don't intend to re-launch the national campaign and instead gave the funding to prefectures for them to do their own Go To. But some only offer deals to local travelers from within the same prefecture and/or neighboring prefectures. Just depends on the area.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: There needs to be a concerted effort to restore Japan's image and lure back all the international talent that has been lost. See in context

As Chairman Mao said, "A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step."

Mao?! That was Lao Tzu, 2000 years ago.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Posted in: 62.9% of people with foreign roots in Japan questioned by police: survey See in context

But 76.9 percent of people who were questioned by police officers in the survey said there was no reason for being treated with suspicion.

So out of 62.9% who were stopped 23.1% said they did act suspiciously.

Which means overall, among all foreign people in Japan, almost 15% admit they act suspiciously.

Seems a bit higher than the average Japanese, perhaps.

-16 ( +13 / -29 )

Posted in: Kishida says no schedule yet for allowing entry of tourists See in context

Only 25.6 percent of those in their 20s in Tokyo had received their third COVID-19 vaccine booster shots as of Tuesday, compared with 44.4 percent for the capital's entire population, according to the metropolitan government.

To encourage vaccinations....

The act as if boosters are an option people are not taking.

In Japan the booster is only available 7 months after the first 2 doses. In my city, healthy people under 60 did not start getting offered their vaccinations last year until Sept, and due to schedules I couldn't get mine until October, with the final dose on October 25. So that means I need to wait until May 25 to reach my 7 months and then be eligible for their discounts or be able to re-enter from abroad without quarantine.

Actually, they didn't finish the official vaccination distribution until late November in my city as well as across Japan, which means no boosters for them until late June!

I can not imagine Japan will allow foreign tourists until the booster is at least available to all citizens and residents.

5 ( +13 / -8 )

Posted in: Japan is simply keeping the stable door shut long after the horse has bolted. Alpha, Delta and Omicron all found their way in despite a lack of tourists. See in context

Foreign traveler or spouse of Japanese? Not allowed in.

Smith, you are simply wrong on that. Foreign spouses or any immediate family member (parent, child, sibling, etc) of a Japanese citizen or a foreign long term resident (such as a PR or spouse of Japanese) can have their family visit Japan. They just need a visitor's visa from their home embassy. Some red tape, yes. But they are allowed.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan is simply keeping the stable door shut long after the horse has bolted. Alpha, Delta and Omicron all found their way in despite a lack of tourists. See in context

OK, let's assume Japan decides to let in foreign tourists immediately.

With that, what would happen if a visiting foreign tourist caught Covid while traveling here? How other countries deal with sick tourists ranges from hotel lockdown (Thailand) to hey, who cares? (US) But how about Japan?

The sick can't isolate at home in Japan, and no hotel would want them (aside from any covid-descrimination, extending the booking multiple days or weeks would wreck havoc on any other hotel bookings. Imagine this conversation: "Sorry Mr. Repeat Customer, we had to cancel you reservation because the sick gaijin shall be in your room. Care to try back next week when he hopefully leaves?")

Not to mention if a hotel did host a sick person, they would need to lock them away but somehow need to supply food (what about the places like small hotels, cabins, guesthouses, rental homes, and AirBnBs which have no food?). And then there is the cleaning of the hotel (good luck onsens) as well as staff health issues.

And besides, can you imagine a Japanese hotel allowing non-sick guests to stay in a room next to someone sick in quarantine? So much for omotenashi!

But if there were some other type of quarantine facility instead, they would have to be located all over the place (something the government couldn't even do for its citizens in the past 2+ years) and these facilities would need to be all staffed with foreign language speaking medical personnel. And how would tourists even get there if the sick aren't suppose to use public transport?

Sure, other countries have completely flipped their living-with-covid attitudes 180 degrees in the past month or two, but widespread attitude change like that in Japan is like turning a 50,000 ton container ship (and the narrow minds of Japan are like the Suez Canal).

7 ( +14 / -7 )

Posted in: A gigantic Hello Kitty Apple House to open on Awaji Island See in context

You know you are in fantasy land when the artist's renderings imagine a future Japan where people somehow live without masks.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Posted in: Japan to lift COVID nonresident foreigner entry ban for 106 nations; tourists still barred See in context

Realistically, the tourism situation is not going to change until the PCR test on arrival is eliminated.... There is no way Japan has the resources to test tourism-level numbers on arrival, or to quarantine those found positive, so tourists will not be let in so long as those are the rules.

Agreed.

Pre-covid, over 100,000 people entered Japan every day, mainly through Tokyo. Yet at the worst of the worst in the pandemic during the past 2 years, Tokyo has only been able to test a one day maximum of just over 30,000, and that was only 2 months ago in early February.

If Japan hasn't ramped up testing by now for its own sick citizens, its beyond unlikely they will do so in order to accommodate visiting gaijin tourists.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Posted in: Gov't welcomes Ukraine evacuees with eye on int'l recognition, election See in context

Do they really care about these evacuees or just another opportunities to look good for PR purpose and public image.

Actually, the government came out and answered your question directly in the article:

A senior official close to Prime Minister Fumio Kishida also said that the use of the government plane was "to clearly show that we are strongly engaged in tackling this problem. We know that it was a performance."

3 ( +16 / -13 )

Posted in: China's COVID-19 policy, yuan's rise vs yen may beset Japan's economy See in context

resource-poor Japan might experience "bad inflation" -- a combination of an economic downturn and higher costs.

This is a false statement.

To correct it, change the word "might" to "has already and will continue to".

3 ( +13 / -10 )

Posted in: Japan to allow up to 10,000 arrivals daily from April 10 See in context

therougou

Please tell me more about this. The MOFA site only says "Spouse or child of a Japanese national/permanent resident.", so I assumed parents of a PR can't enter.

You should check the J-embassy of the country your family is in.

This is from the Embassy of Japan in the Philippines, but I assume its true for anywhere:

Types of Visa and Requirements

  3. Visa for Visiting Relatives 

    (a) To visit Japanese National/Permanent Resident in Japan: a spouse, parents, children, sibling, grandparents, grandchildren may apply for a visa.  

    (b) To visit Long-term Resident in Japan: a spouse, parents, children may apply for a visa. Proof of residence of family in Japan such as "Jyuminhyo" and photocopy of "Residence Card" required.

    (c) To visit relatives other than (a) and (b) above: Explanation letter and proof of necessity of visit required (ex. medical certificate, admission letter, appointment letter etc.) 

    (d) In the case that a relative in Japan died or is under a grave condition, visa application may be acceptable with an official death/medical certificate. 

    (e) In the case that a relative in Japan truly needs emergent caregiving/assistance due to accident, disease or delivery, visa application may be acceptable with an official medical certificate.

Here's the link:

https://www.ph.emb-japan.go.jp/itpr_en/00_000035.html

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan to allow up to 10,000 arrivals daily from April 10 See in context

 I'll have to check about whether or not I'd be able to get a visa for my family members with my current status 

Again, if your wife is Japanese, then your family is her family. So they can enter via her.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan to allow up to 10,000 arrivals daily from April 10 See in context

changing from a work visa to a spouse visa or applying for PR should seek legal advice first. I am not talking about visiting family members who would need the same visa as anyone else.

Application for PR usually requires 10 years of continuous residence.

No need to get "legal advice". All info is online in English via MOFA.

And J-immigration is pretty straight-forward. Just be sure to give all required docs (and I recommend being superfluous with your info and marriage narrative. I've found that they think more info means more credibility).

And again, getting PR status is hard if done directly from a work visa, but if you first have a spouse visa for just one year you can easily convert this to PR (but you need to be married for at least 3+ years total and live in Japan with that spouse visa for one of those years to get PR.)

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan to allow up to 10,000 arrivals daily from April 10 See in context

Moskollo

Completely agree that families of Permanent residents should be given special dispensation to come into the country. My mum has been waiting to see her grandchild for two years, surely family is more important than getting students over?

Again, stop believing this false claim.

Close family of PRs can currently visit Japan from any foreign country. They just need to apply for a family visitor visa at the J-embassy in their country.

So if you are a PR, your mum can visit you at any time (once she gets the visa... and assuming she can get a flight).

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan to allow up to 10,000 arrivals daily from April 10 See in context

Nihon Tora

I am interested in the point above about visas for close family members to visit. My wife is Japanese but I don’t have a spousal visa - I typically just renew my work visa (professor status) each three years. Would that be enough to allow my family to visit or should I change to spousal or PR status?

If your wife is Japanese, then she probably has your surname, which means your close family members (like parents/children) are actually her close family members. So they should be able to apply for a family visitor visa through her at the J-embassy in their country.

But to sponsor them yourself, you need a long-term visa (such as a spouse visa) to do this, or PR status.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan to allow up to 10,000 arrivals daily from April 10 See in context

Nihon Tora,go for a PR.

Don't go for a spouse visa.If you ever break up with your J wife while on a spouse visa in Japan,you are screwed.

Getting PR directly can be hard.

But if you've been married for 2+ years, then get the spouse visa first. Then you need to have a spouse visa for only 1 year (while also living in Japan for that year) at which point you should be married 3+ years, and then you can relatively easily switch that spouse visa to PR. I did exactly this (over a decade ago)

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan to allow up to 10,000 arrivals daily from April 10 See in context

Actually, if you have a long-term resident visa (like a teacher or student) then yes, your immediate family can visit you too.

And note, it must be a "long-term resident visa". Many regular foreign teachers and students are not classified as such.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Posted in: Japan to allow up to 10,000 arrivals daily from April 10 See in context

Woops, this is a mistake in my above post:

But if you have a short-term resident visa (like an English teacher or student), then no, your family can not visit you.

Actually, if you have a long-term resident visa (like a teacher or student) then yes, your immediate family can visit you too.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan to allow up to 10,000 arrivals daily from April 10 See in context

Japan needs to either fully open or at least allow families of residents to come until then....

...though families should not be lumped in with those who have no connections to the country at all

I wish people would stop spreading and/or believing misinformation about families being denied entry.

Immediate relatives of a Japanese citizen or permanent resident are currently allowed to get a visitor's visa and enter Japan.

Yes, "distant relatives" can not enter, but a non-resident foreign spouse, child, sibling, parent, or grandparent of a citizen or PR can enter from any country, but they do need to get a visa.

I personally know of 2 non-resident foreigners who have entered this way in the past couple months.

But if you have a short-term resident visa (like an English teacher or student), then no, your family can not visit you. Sorry. But you are free to go visit them (depending on your home country entry requirements) and come back to Japan. (And notice I mentioned "your home country", because for a J-citizen or PR, Japan is their "home country" and this allows their foreign family to come here).

8 ( +11 / -3 )

Posted in: Singapore to lift restrictions for all vaccinated travelers See in context

From April 1, fully vaccinated adults and unvaccinated children will be allowed to enter the country without quarantining, as long as they take a pre-departure test, officials said.

This single restriction (along with the vaccination), as innocuous as it may seem, is a hefty hurdle for Japan.

Though not stated, Singapore requires a PCR within 48 hours of travel. Good luck getting that in Japan anywhere but Tokyo, and even then, good luck getting it for a Sunday or Monday (or maybe even Tuesday) flight.

And for this to still to be the requirement once Japan (someday) re-opens for foreign tourists, then good luck to all the foreign visitors while in Japan to figure out these pre-departure tests in order to go back to their home countries, since I'm sure all the clinics who don't yet even give these tests easily to Japanese citizens will also be doing service in multiple languages...

1 ( +2 / -1 )

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