The number of domestic travelers during the summer holiday period from July 15 to Aug. 31 is expected to reach a record 76.24 million, up 2.2 percent from last year, according to the Tokyo-based travel agency JTB Corp.
JTB attributed the upbeat forecast to signs that the economy is picking up, the addition of Mount Fuji to the prestigious World Heritage list and Tokyo Disneyland’s 30th anniversary.
The figure, which covers people who plan overnight and longer trips, is the largest since JTB started compiling comparable data in 2000.
In contrast, the number of Japanese heading overseas during the summer peak is expected to fall 5.8 percent to 2.6 million, with a marked decrease in travelers to China and South Korea because of strained diplomatic ties.
Destinations such as Europe and Southeast Asia, including Thailand, remain popular, JTB said.