Even though the COVID-19 pandemic has affected international travel greatly, countries are now slowly starting to reopen their borders
. If Japan is on your bucket list once it's safe to travel, here's some good news! Government officials have set up a plan to open the country to international tourists and if all goes well, the earliest date will be April 2021 ? (as reported by The Japan Times
and SoraNews 24
). As of now, Japan is only open for business travel to some countries, including Singapore. Travel bubbles are also underway for places like Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam.
As the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics are scheduled to open on 23 July 2021, the Japanese government aims to set up COVID-19 safety measures for international tourists by January 2021. Once these are in place, they aim to lift the ban on international tourists in April 2021. However, this will be on a trial basis and it will also depend on the pandemic situation in Japan and around the world.
Travelling in Japan in the new normal will definitely be different and government officials have mapped out the whole process for tourists. At each stage of their travel journey, tourists will need to adhere to the necessary precautions. This starts from the moment they arrive and enter the country to their stay and departure. Here are some of the precautions:
- Tourists will need to have a pre-departure COVID-19 negative test certificate
- Tourists will need to download a health management app. Those who test negative won't need to quarantine for 14 days but they will have to report on their health status on the app for 14 days.
- Tourists will be advised to purchase private medical insurance just in case they test positive for COVID-19 once they are in Japan.
Apart from that, the government will also be setting up a health consultation support centre exclusively for international tourists so that their public health centres won't be overburdened and can strictly deal with local infections. These support centres will most likely be in Tokyo, where the Olympics will be held.
Japan says it will also continue these precautionary measures even after the Olympics. But as of now, there are still many details to be ironed out, such as the limit for the number of tourists, which areas will be open to tourism and more. We're definitely anticipating some good news in the months to come and hopefully, we'll all be able to visit the Land of Rising Sun next year!
P.S. In the meantime, why not get some inspiration for your future Japan trip with our guides?