JTB Sees 450% Increase in 2023 Japan Inbound Tourism

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Travelers are seen at an international arrival lobby at Haneda Airport on Oct. 11.

Japan will see a 450% year-on-year increase in inbound tourism in 2023, according to a JTB Corp. travel trend forecast.

Visitor numbers have increased rapidly since the easing last October of the nation’s COVID-19 border control measures and some 21.1 million tourists — 66% of the 2019 level — are expected to enter the country this year.

Japan is a popular destination for travelers from Western and Asian countries, and there has been a recent sharp increase in vacationists from South Korea, Thailand and Singapore in particular, the leading travel agency said. Despite Beijing’s lifting of its zero-COVID policy, JTB predicted visitors from China will fully recover only from July.

Domestic travel, meanwhile, is expected to increase 8.6% year-on-year to 266 million, recovering to over 90% of the 2019 level. Around 8.4 million people are expected to travel overseas, 190% more than the previous year.

However, all types of travel are expected to be more expensive than before the pandemic due to high prices and rising fuel costs.