The Japan Tourism Agency has stated that its proposed Go To Travel campaign will partly fund domestic tourists' travel expenses as a way to boost tourism in the wake of the country's state of emergency.
Holidays and travel plans still remain on hold for many people all over the world, but countries are beginning to unveil plans for lifting restrictions initially put in place to curb the spread of COVID-19. One such example is Japan, with the country revealing that it may part-fund domestic trips through its Go To Travel campaign. The campaign, which is still "under consideration," is aimed at stimulating tourism by showcasing what Japan has to offer to the people who live there.
Initially it had been reported that the initiative may be aimed at international tourists too but in a series of tweets published Wednesday, the tourism board clarified that the campaign is aimed at the domestic market only.
Japan’s handling of the coronavirus outbreak has been deemed to be effective when compared to other destinations, with the country reporting 16,550 cases so far and 820 deaths. The postponement of the Olympics has had a major impact on the country’s revenue, and combined with dwindling tourist numbers, Japan will be eager to create incentives to boost the sector once it is deemed safe to do so.
It's not the only country to discuss such measures around homegrown tourism, with New Zealand recently putting forward the idea of a four-day working week and more flexibility around annual leave to encourage domestic travel .
Japan has just lifted a state of emergency, easing restrictions in Tokyo and the northern island of Hokkaido.
This article was first published on 26 May and updated on 28 May, 2020.
Lockdowns are easing globally as the planet adjusts to a new normal. Find out how COVID-19 is changing travel.