REPORT: JAPANESE TOURISM FINALLY RECOVERING

Gregory Dolgos - Jun 17, 2013
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In 2011, Japan suffered two major crises. First, the devastating tsunami claimed a countless lives. Then, the country had to handle one of the biggest nuclear scares in their history. The tourism industry was seriously hit. Recent report however suggests that tourism in Japan is beginning to return to normalcy, despite the threat of more natural disasters in the future.

One of the main reasons why the Japanese tourism industry took a major hit was the damage that overtook the entire transportation system. The 2011 earthquake, and the tsunami that followed, destroyed many road systems, rail systems, airports, and seaports all over the country.

In addition to that, many hotels suffered thousands upon thousands of room cancellations for many months after the devastation occurred. All of these key factors are what contributed to the sudden failure of the Japanese tourist industry.

Timetric, a market research company that specializes in measuring economic growth, released a new report suggesting that Japan is now in the middle of a very strong rebounding process. At the end of 2012, the amount of international arrivals grew by nearly 34.6 percent reaching 8.4 million according to their data.

By 2017 inbound tourist arrivals should reach 11.0 million, expanding at a CAGR of 5.7%. They state that the main reasons for this growth will be improved economic conditions and the fact that Japan is doing everything in its power to make the country an attractive destination for tourists from all over the globe.

The amount of domestic tourists is also expected to grow, increasing at a CAGR of 1.68% reaching 330.9 million by 2017. Outbound tourism is likely to grow from 18.5 million outbound departures in 2012 to 21.9 million in 2017, rising at a CAGR of 3.77%.

Though things may be improving for the Japanese tourist sector, many still believe that tourists may hesitate to visit the country. Some skeptics believe that tourists will stay from the recovering country because they feel the country is still at a very high risk of suffering more natural disasters. Furthermore, the Japanese Yen is rising in overall strength, meaning that year after year, it is becoming a lot more expensive for tourists to visit the country.

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