Thursday, October 16, 2008

No welcome Nippon!

Japan's Asahi newspaper recently reported the results of a Ministry of Internal Affairs government survey that found 38% of Japanese inns and hotels reported no foreign guests in 2007, and of those, 72% hoped no foreigners would come (thus 27% of the total). Multiple reasons were elicited for shunning foreign guests: "no expertise with foreign languages" (76%); "unsuitable facilities for foreigners" (72%); "uncertainty if a problem were to arise" (63%). The report was published a week after the newly-founded Japan Tourism Agency began promoting a Visit Japan Campaign to raise the number of international visitors from 8.35 million for 2007 to 20 million by 2020 (and 10 million by 2010).

Asahi (2008) "National Survey 2007: 30% of hotels & ryokan don't want foreign lodgers." (9 Oct 2008; in Japanese) 朝日新聞社. (2008) "「外国人泊めたくない」ホテル・旅館3割 07年国調査" (朝日新聞社).