Chinese tourists lift Japan’s tourism sector
he number of Chinese visitors to Japan increased 80% in October, and shopping by Chinese visitors was stimulated with the introduction of a larger selection of duty-free goods.
The number of visitors to Japan increased 27% to 11.01 million visitors from January to October this year, according to data published by the Japan National Tourism Organization on November 19. The number of Chinese visitors increased 80% in October, spurred on by an increase in flights and port calls by cruises to the country. Expenditure on shopping by Chinese visitors was stimulated with the October introduction of a larger selection of duty-free goods.
Japan received 1.27 million visitors in October, up 37% year-over-year, making it the highest grossing month since 1964. The number of Chinese visitors in Japan peaked at 220,000 during the National Day “Golden Week” (October 1-7), up 84% y-o-y. The number of Korean visitors also increased 58% to 250,000 despite the country’s domestic ferry disaster putting a damper on outbound travel.
The devaluation of the yen and the increase in fights and cruise lines to Japan were the main reasons for the increase in visitors. The Japanese government is fostering the tourism sector by measures such as easing short-term visa requirements for visitors from Southeast Asia.
The types of duty free products has also been expanded from electronics and clothing to cosmetics and food from October. “This move is aimed at attracting more visitors to Japan,” Japan Tourism Agency Commissioner Shigeto Kubo said.
According to the agency’s “Study on consumer trends of visitors to Japan”, Chinese visitors spent an average of JPY236,000 per person in Q3, JPY80,000 more than the overall average.
The Japanese government is still mulling over the easing of requirements for multiple entry visas in an effort to attract even more Chinese visitors in the future.(Transltion by David)