"December 2011" Archives:News

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Japan Tourism Agency

Source: Japan Tourism Agency

The project titled Fly to Japan! (to offer flight tickets to 10,000 foreigners with high potential to communicate Japan's attractions), which had been covered in a number of media in autumn this year, was not approved as a governmental draft budget of FY 2012.

http://www.mlit.go.jp/kankocho/en/page08_000020.html

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New service

Source:asahi.com

MOTENASU-JAPAN is a premium service for individual tourists starting January 2012. Tourists will be able to experience traditional Japanese culture and splendid hospitality. Here you can try on Kimono, take a stroll in beautiful gardens, play with geisha girls on Yakata-bune ( private owned traditional Japanese boat ) or stay at gorgeous Onsen ryokan ( classicall Japanese accommodation with hot spring ).
The guide will be able to speak in both Japanese and English, so that language barrier will not be a concern anymore for foreign visitors.

http://www.asahi.com/business/pressrelease/ATP201112220010.html

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New products

Reference: Akiba Keizai Shinbun

For foreign travelers who visit Akihabara, a multi-linguistic iPhone application, Akihabara Guide, has been released on December 9. The content is based on the book "The Best Shops of Akihabara" (2008) which collected information by interviewing foreign visitors in Akihabara about the shops they visited, the places they wanted to visit and the things they had difficulty with. It aims to help visitors enjoy the rich "otaku" culture in Akihabara.

http://akiba.keizai.biz/headline/2233/

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Transportation

Source: asahi.com

China Airlines, a Taiwanese airline company will start to have regular flights between Kagoshima and Taiwan from March 25th next year. According to Kagoshima prefecture's announcement, flights are scheduled on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday. Wing Bow 737-800, an airplane with 158 seats will be used, and the flight takes 2 hours in total.
Kyushu is a popular destination for Taiwanese tourists. On top of Kyushu shinkansen, the new direct flight will give Tiwanese tourists another choice of transportation when travelling to Japan.

http://mytown.asahi.com/kagoshima/news.php?k_id=47000001112190002

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Ratings

Source:Kyodo news

Tokyo remains for the three consecutive year the city with the most three-star restaurants among the cities covered by the Michelin Guide, with 16 such restaurants in Tokyo now. Michelin also awarded two stars to 52 restaurants in Tokyo, three in Yokohama and one in Shonan.

http://english.kyodonews.jp/news/2011/11/128790.html

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Transportation

Source:Doshinweb

From December.21, Direct Access Association (an association created by hotels and Tourism Association of Otaru) will run a free bus from Sinchitose Airport to hotels in Otaru downtown area. This service is especially for tourists coming from East Asian countries such as Taiwan, Hong Kong and China.
The association will run nine buses in five days per week. Detailed schedule will be set along with the arrival time of direct flights from East Asia. Currently this free shuttle goes to 8 hotels, online reservation is required.

http://www.hokkaido-np.co.jp/news/chiiki/336845.html

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New service

Reference: JNTO

While JNTO has been providing interesting and useful information needed for traveling in Japan through its website in 12 languages, they have set up a website specialized just for Taiwanese travelers. The site focuses on detailed information especially interseting to the Taiwanese travelers. One of its contents includes a special feature on Tohoku, which will help the Tohoku area recover from the decreased number of visitors.

http://www.jnto.go.jp/jpn/press_releases/111118_taiwan_website.html

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New products

Reference: Kanaloco

Service offering information on visiting Yokohama via smartphones has been launched. The service is available in 3 languages including Japanese, English, Korean and Chinese. Information on access to the city, information on hotels, commercial facilities, restaurants are available for free. The idea is to promote Yokohama to domestic visitors as well as foreign tourists.

http://news.kanaloco.jp/localnews/article/1112050034/

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Transportation

Source:SHARP

A media tablet "GALAPAGOS" (EB-A71GJ-B) was adopted by East Japan Rail Way Company(JR-EAST) as a mobile tool to help staff guide around.

The workers(service managers) guid people, bringing GALAPAGOS around when they walk along in a station. They expect that's going to be helpful
for their customers to get a variety of information while workers show its screen to them. They decided to use GALAPAGOS because of its splendid
features: GALAPAGOS is slim and easy to bring around like a diary, it has a seven inches screen which is large enough to show information clearly,
and it has a speedy communication system in it.

http://www.sharp.co.jp/corporate/news/111206-a.html

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Ratings

Reference: Lonely Planet

Lonely Planet lists Japan within the Top 10 best value travel destinations for 2012. Comparing Japan to travel destinations like London, Paris or New York, it suggests that attractions and accommodation are often much cheaper.

http://www.lonelyplanet.com/usa/travel-tips-and-articles/76857?intafil=lpemail

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Transportation

Reference: Travel Vision

On the 19th of December, View Travel Service (VTS) and Japan Air Line, in cooporation with Aomori prefecture, will launch a new product to encourage travelers to visit Aomori from Taiwan. The new products are being launched in celebration of the aniversary of the extension of Tohoku Shinkansen service to Aomori. The product involves a JAL flight from Taipen to Haneda and then from Haneda to Aomori. The return journey is a Tohoku Shinkansen ride from any station in Aomori to Tokyo station and then a JAL flight from Haneda to Taipei.

http://www.travelvision.jp/news/detail.php?id=51430 

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Reference: Travel Vision

On 12 December 2011, T-Gate (a joint investment of Kansai Nihon Tourist and Kadokawa Magazines) will issue their first Chinese free magazine "Japan Free Premium" aiming at the Chinese luxury market in China. This magazine is operated in cooperation with Kadokodawa Intercontinental Publishing Ltd., a firm which has been issuing free quarterly magazines targeted at the Chinese tourists visiting Hong Kong,

http://www.travelvision.jp/news/detail.php?id=51426

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Regional inbound activities

Reference: asahi.com

The annual Kobe Luminarie event began 1st of December, to mourn the thousands of people we lost in the 1995 Great Hanshin Earthquake in Kobe. This is the 17th time Kobe Luminarie has taken place and it will be on until the 12th of December.

http://www.asahi.com/kansai/travel/news/OSK201112020006.html

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Transportation

Reference: Ibaraki Airport

Ibaraki Airport awarded Low Cost Airport of the Year 2011 by CAPA(Centre for Aviation). Ibaraki Airport has been an important hub for travellers visiting the north of Tokyo and surrounding areas.

http://www.ibaraki-airport.net/news/detail.html?news_id=54

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Reference: Travel Vision

On 30 November 2011 AirAsia X (D7) began offering 4 flights each week from its hub in Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia to Osaka in Japan. At a recent press conference, held on December 1st, Azran Osman-Rani, CEO of AirAsia expects to offer daily flights between Osaka and Kuala Lumpur in the future. Unlike in Haneda Airport, number of flights is not restricted in Kansai International Airport. It is therefore possible to increase the flights by having systematic changes. Osman-Rani stated that "it is greatly anticipated to expand the market both in Japan and South East Asia from Kansai International Airport, a regional hub that has great access to attractive cities in Japan".


http://www.travelvision.jp/news/detail.php?id=51396

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Survey

Reference: Japan Travel Agency

Survey results of trends of foreign tourists to Japan carried out between July and September 2011 has been published by Japan Travel Agency. Although foreign tourist spending has decreased by 31% compared to previous year (same period), the decrease rate is milder compared to April - June 2011 (46.9% drop). Average foreign tourist spending was 120.343 yen, slightly higher compared to same period last year. Number of repeat foreign tourists have recovered and overall the number of tourists are on the mend. Popular souvenirs amongs foreign tourists were sweets, cameras, cosmetics, mangas, and anime goods.

http://www.mlit.go.jp/kankocho/news02_000120.html

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New products

Reference: Google News

Google will start providing indoor google map service on mobile phones to include directions within airports, stations and large shopping facilties. This will help holiday-makers including foreign tourists in Japan to get around to places within these facilties at ease. The initial service will only cover a small fraction of the great indoor transportation and shopping facilities, but Google is hoping to expand the service as more operators of shopping and transportation hubs submit their indoor floor plans so they can be mapped.

http://bit.ly/s2B8AS

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New campaigns

Reference: Kansai Megasale

Kansai mega sale is starting today, until the end of January 2011. 6000 establishments at 112 shopping, dining and tourist locations ae participating in the Osaka, Kyoto, Kobe and Sakai areas.

http://kansai-megasale.com/about/index_en.html

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New products

Reference: JR-East

The JR Kanto Area Pass is a discounted pass sold for 8000 yen for unlimited rides in Tokyo and the surrounding Kanto area for three consecutive days. The pass can be used for unlimited rides and can even be used for reserved seats on ordinary cars on the Shinkansen, limited express and other trains. This is a perfect rail pass for those arranging visits to Mount Fuji, Izu and Karuizawa.

http://www.jreast.co.jp/e/kantoareapass/

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Japan Tourism Agency

Reference: Japan Tourism Agency

Although a number of media outlets have publicized about the offering of 10.000 free flights to foreigners visiting Japan, this is an initiative to be implemented from April 2012 onwards, which is still under examination for budgetary approval.

http://www.mlit.go.jp/kankocho/en/page01_000222.html

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