Massive Increase in Tourism in Japan

Until very recently, Japan did not have a great number of tourists coming in every year, but now, it does, so with the tourists come a lot of problems.

Japan should definitely have a flourishing tourism industry as it is a very beautiful country possessing a rich culture, having a long history and being a server of delicious food. However, foreign tourism was almost non-existent in Japan for most of the 20th and 21st century and the reasons for it are obvious as well: a World War along with very expensive airfare. But even during the 1990s, overseas visitors in Japan were slim to none.

As the neighbors of Japan in Asia continue to increase, so do the number of travelers. In 2018, a massive number of almost 31 million overseas visitors traveled in Japan, which according to Nippon.com shows an 8.7% rise than the previous year, making it a record. More than 50% of foreign tourists are coming from South Korea and mainland China. Almost 15.3% belong to Taiwan and about 7.1% from Hong Kong. Among the tourist destinations in Japan, Tokyo has the most popularity.

This huge increase in the number of tourists became all the more prominent between 2014 and 2015 when the foreign tourists hit the mark of 20 million. Ever since the influx of tourists is steadily increasing. In comparison, roughly 5 million tourists came to Japan in 2001 when it hosted the World Cup, 3.2 million in 1990, almost 1.3 million in the year 1980, and about 854 thousand in 1970.

The Japanese government, for the promotion of tourism, is latching on the concept of Omotenashi, which means looking after the guests whole-heartedly. The website of Japan National Tourism Organization says that Omotenashi is not a term that can be defined in English as it is an experience only to be felt in Japan.  It is basically a sense of implausible hospitality that is carried across just home stays but also formal ceremonies, gatherings, retail, as well as dining.