Rich foreign visitors could stay longer in Japan

8 years ago by in Japan

Japanese politicians are thinking of ways to increase tourism in the country and thus planned to create a new kind of entry qualification that will allow rich foreign visitors to stay for a longer time in Japan.

At the moment, foreigners can obtain an approval for a longer period, but only for business or educational purposes.

Meanwhile, in another move to increase tourist arrivals in the country, a Ministry of Justice council is recommending setting up the Trusted Travelers Program for foreign business travelers and tourists, which will allow pre-approved and low-risk passengers to use an automated kiosk instead of going through immigration, according to the local press.

Foreign residents who have re-entry permits can already use this service.

In the mean time, around 923,000 foreign tourists visited Japan in April, with 18.1 percent more compared to the same period last year.

The figure eclipsed the previous high of 879,000 set in July 2010, according to the Japan National Tourism Organization.

“The figure is not bad, but more needs to be done” to reach Japan’s goal of having 10 million visitors for the year, Japan Tourism Agency chief Norifumi Ide said, according to Kyodo news agency.