Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO) aims to build on the 31 million visitors it recorded in 2018 at ATM 2019.
.JNTO’s stand is adorned with real cherry blossoms to highlight its spring colours and year-round seasonal appeal, while luxury and authenticity are other key promotional messages. Sport is set to be another major inbound magnet, with the Rugby World Cup coming up later this year and Tokyo hosting the 2020 Olympic Games.
The Japanese Government is currently targeting 40 million visitors for next year.
ATM delegates can enjoy daily tea ceremonies, traditional street juggling acts and kimono shows at local tourism boards from Tokyo and Kyoto, Japan Airlines, JR Kyushu cruise train ‘Nanatsuboshi’, Hilton Japan, Keio Plaza Hotel Tokyo, Tokyu Hotels, and tour operators Ayabex, KNT-CT Global Travel, Miki Travel and MT Japan.
Executive vice president, JNTO, Tsutomu Shimura said that while the majority of Japan’s visitors are from neighboring Asian countries (24.34 million), it is keen to attract more affluent, long-haul visitors. JNTO has a strong global presence through its 21 overseas offices.
“The market research we conducted last year shows the Middle East, especially the UAE, is a potential lucrative market with positive impressions of Japan,” he said. “We have identified the Middle East market as an important market for travellers seeking unique luxury experiences and will use the ATM to spearhead a great number of promotional activities in the region.”
Strong connectivity from Emirates Airline and Etihad Airways is another positive factor, fuelling UAE visitor numbers from 7,106 in 2017 to 7,782 last year. Total GCC visitor numbers rose from 20,742 in 2017 to 21,976 last year.
From traditional culture with 18 UNESCO World Heritage sites to modern pop culture including manga and anime, Japan ranked fourth in the world for travel and tourism competitiveness, and is the perfect holiday destination for travellers looking for authentic travel experiences among its 126 million population.
Inbound visitor drivers include relaxation of visa requirements, expansion of tax-free programme and faster immigration procedures, along with growth in flight and cruise networks and rise of middle and high-income classes in Asia.