As the world gradually reopens and life begins to restore some semblance of normality, Japan may soon be offering daring travelers one of the best travel deals of 2020 to curb their post-quarantine wanderlust: half-priced flights. Similar to many other nations, Japan’s tourism industry took a massive hit this year due to Covid-19 lockdown measures and border closures. However, the East Asian country especially suffered considering the postponement of the Summer Tokyo Olympics and a 99.9% drop in tourists last month during the infamous spring cherry blossom season compared to last year.
Amid lifting stay-at-home measures and easing flight restrictions, the Japanese government could potentially subsidize travelers’ airline fees to help revitalize its thriving tourism scene once again. According to The Japan Times, a representative from the Japan Tourism Agency announced the government plans to release a 45.9 billion AED-worth reimbursement initiative this July, which could possibly include the country paying for half the cost of flights for tourists who book trips in the upcoming half of the year.
The Go To Travel program is also rumored to subsidize holidays by up to 681 AED per day through discounts and vouchers redeemable at local shops and restaurants if vacations are booked through Japanese travel agencies or with hotels directly. While overseas visitors are not excluded from this initiative, it’s intended to specifically stimulate domestic travel demand within Japan and cover domestic travel expenses, explained the Japan Travel Agency, not the expenses of foreign travelers. Nevertheless, the country’s creative efforts to triage after the dire effects of the pandemic on its economy may help Japan achieve its previous goal to welcome 40 million tourists by the end of 2020, or at the very least give the hard-hit hospitality and airline sectors the kickstart it needs to get back on its feet after this unprecedented crisis.