National

Japanese winter holiday travelers at Narita up 6.5%

JIJI

The number of Japanese people who flew out of and into Japan using Narita International Airport near Tokyo during the year-end and New Year’s holiday period marked the first growth in two years, preliminary data showed Thursday.

Between Dec. 21 and Jan. 3, the number of such passengers rose 6.5 percent from a year earlier to 599,230, according to the Tokyo Regional Immigration Bureau’s Narita Airport District Immigration Office.

The rise came mainly because low-cost carriers increased their flight services and people who work Monday to Friday could take nine straight days off from Dec. 29 through Jan. 6 if they took leave Jan. 4, the first business day of 2019.

The number of foreign passengers who used international flights to and from Narita increased 4.5 percent to 690,750.

Of foreign passengers who flew to Narita for short-term travel to Japan, those from China, excluding Macau and Hong Kong, accounted for the largest share, at 44,380, followed by Taiwan at 33,120, and the United States at 32,710.

Of both Japanese and foreign passengers who departed from the airport to overseas destinations, travelers to the United States came to 126,500, the largest, followed by those to China at 75,900, and those to South Korea at 75,000.

Meanwhile, the total number of Japanese and foreign air passengers who traveled out of and to Japan using Tokyo International Airport at Haneda during the same period went up 5.3 percent to 700,150, according to the Haneda Airport District Immigration Office.