Current account surplus falls 76%

Jun 9, 2014

Current account surplus falls 76%

Despite a 76.1 percent plunge in April, Japan's trade balance stays in the black after foreign visitors provide the first travel surplus in 44 years.

May 23, 2014

Tourists from Taiwan, China, S. Korean spend the most in Japan

Tourists from Taiwan, China and South Korea accounted for 68 percent of spending by all tourists in Japan last year, according to a report by Tokyo’s de facto embassy in Taiwan. The Interchange Association, which is responsible for relations with Taiwan in the absence ...

Apr 2, 2014

Standardized English for road signs to help foreign tourists

by Atsushi Kodera

Foreign tourists in Japan will have a less confusing time trying to identify roads and landmarks thanks to the introduction of standardized English words and eradication of “Romanized” Japanese words on public signs, transport ministry officials said. Revised transport ministry guidelines that took effect ...

Mar 30, 2014

Muslims praise Yokohama site

More than 90 percent of Southeast Asian Muslims surveyed say the “restaurants,” “mosques” and “suggested itineraries” links on the Muslim Tourist Information website are useful, the Yokohama Convention & Visitors Bureau said Friday. The website, set up in December, provides information based on recommendations ...

Snow-hit tourist sites try to regroup

Feb 21, 2014

Snow-hit tourist sites try to regroup

A week after record snow hit the Kanto-Koshin region for the second time within the month, tourist destinations in Nagano and Yamanashi prefectures are trying to lure back visitors after their numbers plunged due to road closures. Nagano Prefecture, flooded with queries regarding the ...

Guam rampage trial delayed by psych claim

Feb 17, 2014

Guam rampage trial delayed by psych claim

The trial over a vehicular rampage and stabbing spree on Guam a year ago that left three Japanese dead and several others injured has yet to begin after the defendant waived his right to a speedy trial and claimed mental illness as his defense. ...

Tourism industry woos Asian Muslims

Nov 25, 2013

Tourism industry woos Asian Muslims

by Keisuke Iwata

Local-level authorities are stepping up efforts to attract Muslim tourists to their holiday spots as Japan becomes a prime destination for the growing middle-class population of Southeast Asia. Their efforts center on promoting local businesses’ understanding of the religion’s customs, including dietary habits and ...

Nov 21, 2013

All ages heading to guesthouses

by Asako Takaguchi

Traditionally popular with young people, hostels and guesthouses are growing in popularity among middle-aged and elderly people looking for reasonably priced accommodations. One such guesthouse in Kyoto, called Kazariya, was converted from a 100-year-old private house. The guesthouse has four rooms, each of which ...