Southeast Asian tourists to Japan hit record high in 2019 for 8th consecutive year of increase

20, Jan. 2020

Photo by Atul Vinayak on Unsplash
Photo by Atul Vinayak on Unsplash

SINGAPORE, NNA - Tourists from six Southeast Asian nations visiting Japan hit a record high of 3.834 million in 2019 for the 8th consecutive year of increase, with travelers from all of those countries surpassing the previous year levels, according to Japanese industry data.

Japan National Tourism Organization, or JNTO, reported Friday that travelers from six ASEAN members – Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam – increased 15.2 percent from a year earlier, supported by the inauguration of new flight routes and additional flights as well as the promotion of local sightseeing areas.

Thailand was the most significant contributor to the Japanese tourism industry among them, marking a 16.5 percent increase to 1.319 million, followed by 613,100 visitors from the Philippines - surpassing 600,000 for the first time – up 21.7 percent from last year.

The growth also benefited from a series of new route inaugurations such as Manila to Haneda in Tokyo, Manila to Kansai in Osaka, western Japan as well as Clark to Narita near Tokyo.

The number of visitors from Malaysia showed a 7.1 percent increase to 501,700, to top 500,000 for the first time. Sightseeing promotion of local areas, including the introduction of restaurants with halal certification, contributed to the growth.

Vietnam marked the most considerable increase rate of 27.3 percent among the six ASEAN members to 495,100, ranking fourth in terms of the number of travelers to Japan. Sightseeing during the cherry blossom season appealed to them, according to JNTO.

Supported by an increasing number of flights to Japan, Singaporean tourists increased 12.6 percent to 492,300, while Indonesians numbered 412,800, up 4.0 percent.

In December alone, the five ASEAN member countries except Vietnam posted a record-high number of travelers to Japan.