Go To Travel Halt Seen Hitting Tourism Industry Hard

Economy

Tokyo/Nagoya, Dec. 15 (Jiji Press)--The Japanese government’s decision Monday to suspend its Go To Travel tourism subsidy program across the country during the year-end and New Year holiday period sent shock waves through the tourism industry, which had already been battered by the novel coronavirus epidemic.

Cancellations of travel reservations are expected to rise following the government’s decision, which came amid a surge in COVID-19 infections in Japan.

The coronavirus “has hit the busy season again,” an official at a major travel agency said. “I wonder how much reservations will go down.” The virus also hit the industry hard during the “Bon” summer holiday season in August, another high-demand period.

The negative impact of the suspension of the Go To Travel campaign on Japan’s economy is estimated at 83 billion yen, according to Toshihiro Nagahama, chief economist at Dai-ichi Life Research Institute Inc.

The suspension “is like rubbing salt in the wounds of the already battered hotel industry,” Nagahama said.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press