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Japanese Resilience

New study predicts Japan tourism to rise

Nelson Alcantara, eTN editor-in-chief  Nov 02, 2011

The aggressive efforts by the Japanese travel and tourism industry to lure tourists back following last March’s catastrophic events seem to be paying off. At least, this can argued based on a recent study that revealed “Japan is still a key destination for international travelers.”

Japan remains firmly on the wish list of destinations with global travelers, according to the recent Visa Global Travel Intentions Survey 2011, which polled 11,620 respondents from 23 countries and territories around the world.

According to Visa's survey, 16% of respondents polled said that they are likely to travel to Japan for leisure in the next two years, making it the third most popular destination with respondents. The United States and United Kingdom were ranked first and second respectively.

“The mystery of the Orient combine with ultra-modern living to make Japan a destination that intrigues and inspires. As tourists continue to search for new and exciting destinations Japan is moving up the wish list,” confirmed Sarah Campbell, director of Blazon Communications, the Middle East & North Africa representative of Blossom Japan, a high-end travel trade event taking place in Kyoto, Japan, February 13-16, 2012.

Japan received 8.6 million tourists in 2010, an increase of 26% on 2009, according to statistics from the Japan National Tourism Organization. While post-tsunami figures have seen a decrease of on average 33% per month, 3.9 million travelers visited Japan between January and July of this year, pointing to a strong recovery being underway.

Organized by Lucioles, Blossom Japan is a dedicated invitation-only event that connects buyers from across the world looking for exciting new products to present to their clients with exhibitors representing premium travel experiences. By creating a platform for key luxury brands to meet, Blossom Japan provides a new dynamism for the whole luxury travel industry internationally and in Japan.

Exhibitors already confirmed for Blossom Japan 2012 include Silversea Cruises, Orient-Express, Amanresorts, Naiade Resorts and Ayana Resort and Spa Bali.

Blossom Japan 2012 will take place February 13–16. The event will commence with a full-day conference followed by a three-day exhibition at ICC Kyoto. The exhibition will be facilitated by pre-scheduled appointments ensuring that all attendees are conducting serious business by day, and will be supplemented by a series of networking events by night for all buyers, exhibitors and media attending.

Japan is also preparing to host the 2012 edition of the World Travel & Tourism Council’s (WTTC) Global Travel & Tourism Summit, which over the years has proven itself to be a must-attend event for the industry’s movers and shakers.

Atsutoshi Nishida, chairman of the board at Toshiba Corporation and chairman of the WTTC Global Summit 2012 host committee, has said: “Japan has developed a distinct travel culture that is permeated with the spirit of hospitality. I want to make next year’s WTTC Global Summit a fusion of this unique culture and Japan’s cutting edge technology. The Global Summit will take place in April - a wonderful time of year in which spring can be enjoyed to the full, and the cherry blossoms - the symbol of Japan - are in full bloom. I look forward to hosting you all during the time of year in which ‘the heart dances its most.’ You are all very welcome to Japan.”

According to the WTTC, The 12th annual WTTC Global Summit will be held in two locations -- Sendai City (April 16-17) and Tokyo (April 17-19). “A year after the Tohoku region was devastated by the earthquake and tsunami of 11 March 2011, the Sendai Recovery and Asia Outlook Summit (in association with the Pacific Asia Travel Association) will be held in Sendai City, the provincial capital of the Miyagi Prefecture and a focal point of last year’s disaster recovery efforts.”

The plenary session of the 12th Global Summit are scheduled to take place in Tokyo and “will examine, among other subjects, the role of travel and tourism industry as a driver of economic and social advancement at a time of global turbulence.” The summit will take place at International Convention Center Pamir, Tokyo.

New study predicts Japan tourism to rise
photo by Nelson Alcantara

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