, 2022-12-16 21:45:54,
The number of holidaymakers in Japan making domestic trips during the New Year vacation period is expected to rise by 3 million from a year earlier but remain at 71.8 percent of pre-pandemic levels, or 21 million people, according to travel agency projections released this month.
Major Japanese travel agency JTB Corp. partially attributed the expected increase from the 2021/2022 holiday period to people having a lower psychological barrier to travel during the coronavirus pandemic.
File photo shows tourists in the area around Kiyomizu-dera temple in Kyoto on Jan. 8, 2022. (Kyodo)
The less than full-fledged recovery in travel was likely the result of rising prices of goods and services as well as efforts to limit outdoor activities during the ongoing “eighth wave” of virus infections, according to the company.
In the 2019/2020 New Year period, the last before the pandemic began in spring 2020, an estimated 29.27 million people made domestic trips.
JTB projected the number of people who would make at least one overnight stay at travel destinations between Dec. 23 and Jan. 3, 2023, based on an online questionnaire conducted in November and available reservation data.
Average travel spending is expected to rise 12.1 percent from the previous year to 37,000 yen ($275) per person, with an increase in family trips and travel involving two- to four-night stays.
Solo trips, which saw greater incidence during the pandemic, are projected to decrease.
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