Japan Seeks to Address the Repercussions of Tourism Boom

Year in and year out, the Land of the Rising sun welcomes a great surge of international tourists and globetrotters from different parts of the world. More than a million foreigners come to visit Japan to experience the country’s unique traditions and culture, be amazed by its awe inspiring tourist attractions and try out some of the most iconic Japanese dishes known worldwide to provide a one of a kind gastronomic experience.


However, with the influx of international travellers in Japan, establishments and firms located in major tourist spots have also observed some repercussions such as the unruly behavior of some tourists and the worsening traffic congestion. These observations are also reflected in a recent government survey carried out by the Japan Tourism Agency this month. Aside from these main issues, the said survey also reveals the other disadvantages of the tourism boom in Japan including the shortage of accommodation and lack of emergency preparedness.


Photo credit to: https://www.japantimes.co.jp

More than thirty eight percent of the prefectures and municipalities across Japan with popular tourist attractions voiced out that the worsening traffic situation is brought about by the increase in the number of sightseeing buses. Around twenty five percent cited that the disrespectful attitude of tourists is also an alarming issue in relation to the use of public comfort rooms. On the other hand, twenty percent suggested that littering in both public places and residential areas must also be addressed.


Since Japan is targeting to attract approximately forty million foreign tourists and sports enthusiasts by 2020 in view of the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, the Japanese government is looking into these issues as early as possible. In order to address these matters, forty four percent of the municipalities that participated in the survey guaranteed that they are willing to cooperate with local governments in implementing measures that would ensure the spread of tourist flows in the country. Meanwhile, forty two percent of the prefectures concerned are in favor of promoting the use of bicycle rentals to lessen traffic jams.


Reference: Japan grapples with traffic jams, visitors’ manners amid tourism boom


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