Your trip to Japan is looking up with the news that the Japanese government is considering a travel bubble that would allow visitors from countries with low levels of COVID-19 infections to fly in as soon as October.
Both Australia and New Zealand have made Japan’s list of priority nations, of which there are 10 in total, according to the Nikkei Asian Review. There’s little information around the opening of borders at this stage, but we wait eagerly to hear more about whether or not a two-week quarantine will be required upon entry.
The publication says that starting on October 1, 2020, the government will allow the entry of foreigners with permission to stay in the country for more than three months.
From next month, Japan will also lower Australia into a ‘Level 2’ warning. The grading system is more of a reference for Japanese travellers.
Previously, when Australia was categorised as ‘Level 3’, Japanese nationals were urged to avoid travel to Australia completely. A ‘Level 2’ warning means Japanese travellers should avoid non-essential travel to the country.
Previous story published on June 9, 2020
Japan Is Proposing a Travel Bubble and Australia Has Made the Cut
Japan’s state of emergency was lifted on May 25 and the reopening of schools, cinemas and department stores swiftly followed. Even still, an entry ban for much of the world is still in place within the country.
However, when Japan does look to reopen borders to tourists once more, it’s rumoured the nation will first allow visitors from four countries, all of which saw successful responses to the novel coronavirus and had low levels of infections.
According to The Asahi Shimbun, Australia, New Zealand, Thailand and Vietnam are rumoured to make up the list of countries being considered for the bubble, and it’s exciting news for those of us with itchy feet.
Japan’s tourism is down 99.9% from April last year, with the nation welcoming less than 3,000 tourists in April 2020 — the largest ever decline. Of course, Japan had been expecting to host thousands of visitors for the 2020 Olympics, while the Sakura (cherry blossom) seasons usually draws large numbers from all over the world, too.
Japan’s response to coronavirus has been hailed something of a “success story” by experts, according to the ABC. Considering the population of 126 million, there’s no denying the job well done to contain what could have been sincerely worse.
Right now, all Australians are expected to comply with current ‘Do Not Travel’ advice, so it may not be worth you booking anything you can’t change or cancel flexibly at this stage.
In the meantime, those keen to visit Japan can begin planning their trip with the 10 unmissable Tokyo experiences, best places to stay in Tokyo, what you need to know before climbing Mount Fuji and the only way to get a table at Jiro’s famous Tokyo restaurant.