Government Warns Foreign Tourists Against Rip Off Bars in Japan

In recent times, there has been a surge of foreign tourists in the Land of the Rising Sun. Year in and year out, hundreds of thousands of globetrotters and international travellers from different parts of the world come to visit Japan in order to personally experience the country’s unique culture and iconic cuisines, be amazed by its awe inspiring tourists attractions and to appreciate its technological advancements.


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However, with the influx of travel enthusiasts in Japan, the government also noted an increase in the number of swindlers and fraudulent establishments which are particularly called “rip-off bars” These entities have posed a serious problem in the tourism industry in Japan for quite some time now and the authorities are looking for ways to crack down their illegal businesses.


As a matter of fact, the deceptive scheme of these so-called rip-off bars has come to the attention of the United States Embassy. The U.S warned American tourists in Japan as early as 2014, to wit: “We remind U.S. citizens to exercise caution and maintain security awareness in entertainment districts like Roppongi and Shinjuku’s Kabukicho, as drink-spiking incidents over the years have routinely led to robbery and occasionally resulted in physical and sexual assaults. In most drink-spiking reports, the victim unknowingly drinks a beverage that has been mixed with a drug, rendering the victim unconscious or dazed for several hours, during which time the victim’s credit card is stolen or used for large purchases. Some victims regain consciousness in the bar or club; other victims may awaken on the street or in other unknown locations.”


Unfortunately, if a foreign bar goer is drugged, it can be a lot easier for the rip off bar operators to extort money from them. They are forced into signing credit card bills up to thousands of yen. They sometimes take pictures of these victims while holding bottles of alcoholic beverages in order to use as evidenced that they purchased said items in case the police will question them at a later time and date.


A Japanese sociologist Toru Takeoka remarked that these fraudulent establishments do not aspire to attract repeat customers due to the quality of their services. Rather, these rip-off bars only want to extort as much money or valuable from their innocent foreign victims.


Reference: Rip-off bars are taking advantage of Japan’s tourism boom


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