Japan kicks off domestic tourism campaign despite spike in new COVID-19 cases

Japan kicks off domestic tourism campaign despite spike in new COVID-19 cases

In a bid to revive its shattered travel industry, Japan’s tourism launched a national travel campaign today, amid criticism over a spike in new COVID-19 cases in major Japanese cities.

The ‘Go To Travel’ slogan was instead dubbed ‘Go To Trouble’ by some domestic media. The campaign offers subsidies of up to 50 percent for trips to and from prefectures except for Tokyo, which was dropped from the program last week after infections surged to new highs.

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Many of Japan’s governors wanted the campaign delayed or altered, fearing that visitors could carry the virus to rural areas with few infections. A Mainichi newspaper poll this week showed 69 percent of the public wanted the program cancelled entirely.

Osaka set a record daily high with about 120 new infections on Wednesday, Governor Hirofumi Yoshimura said, while daily infections in Tokyo were 238.

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