DALLAS – Japan is to waive its tourist visa requirements for some countries as part of a further easing of its COVID-19 border controls.
According to a report by the Fuji News Network and relayed by Reuters, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida could decide as early as this week on the easing, which would also allow individual travelers to visit Japan without travel agency bookings.
The Japanese nation did not require tourist visas for 68 countries and regions before COVID-19 took a stranglehold on global aviation. To open up the country further, Japan may scrap a daily cap on arrivals by October, the Nikkei newspaper reported on Sunday.
“A weak yen is most effective in attracting inbound tourism,” Deputy chief cabinet secretary Seiji Kihara said on a television program on Sunday, noting that further steps had to be taken to attract more foreign visitors.
To help usher in the post-pandemic recovery, the Asian country raised the daily ceiling of inbound travelers from 20,000 to 50,000 and axed a requirement for pre-departure COVID tests, easing what has been among the most restrictive border measures among major economies.
Featured image: Four members of Star Alliance at Tokyo Narita Airport: Thai, United, Swiss, and SAS. Photo: By Marek Slusarczyk, CC BY 3.0