Japan tour packages are more expensive due to Covid restrictions

The Japan National Tourism Organization announced the entry rules for tour operators allowed to enter Japan with their groups on June 10 for the first time since the pandemic in 2020. Along with the restrictions and immigration requirements , Covid-19 controls and rising operating costs, prices are expected to be 30-40% higher than packages offered before the outbreak, according to the president of the Thai Travel Agents Association , Charoen Wangananont.

Each group must have a maximum of 10 people and be accompanied by a tour guide during the entire trip, which will lead to a steep increase in prices as companies must provide meals with the tour. Tour operators will struggle to make a profit with smaller groups, so they need to raise the price per person to keep their heads above water.

“We have yet to see how Thai customers react to the rule as there are requirements that require them to pay more and engage in additional document processing, including a 2,000 baht visa fee, which had been waived. exempted before the pandemic.” Tourists must also apply for a visa and take an RT-PCR test 72 hours before arrival, which costs around 5,000 baht.

Travel agencies wishing to sell tour packages must establish a relationship with authorized companies in the country. The policy was put in place by the Japanese government to help reduce the impact on tourist activity before it opens up to individual travellers. Quarantine and the PCR test are waived for Thai nationals, as well as for other countries classified as “blue” countries.

THE SOURCE: Bangkok Post