An increasing number of countries have tapped into the convenience of e-visas to attract more tourists from China, the world's largest source of outbound tourists.
According to tourism insiders, the Japanese embassy in Beijing said on Thursday during a meeting with local travel agencies that it will launch e-visa services on May 1, allowing applicants to submit their materials online instead of sending paper documents.
Japan Tourism Agency data showed that 8.38 million tourists from the Chinese mainland traveled to Japan in 2018, representing a year-on-year growth of 13.9% and contributing nearly 27% of international tourists.
A report published by major Chinese travel agency Ctrip showed that 160 million Chinese people have travel plans during the upcoming four-day May Day holiday. Thailand, Japan, Vietnam, Taiwan and Indonesia are the top destinations outside the mainland.
Since last year, countries including Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Turkey, Thailand and Sri Lanka have started to accept visa application documents online and issue e-visas, either a bar code or QR code.
Industry insiders said that the rapid development of internet technology in China and people's heavy use of online shopping, mobile payment and banking services have allowed e-visa services to take root quickly in the country.
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