Japan's Go to Travel Campaign: Save up to 50% on Domestic Travel
* Important notice: The Japanese government has suspended Go To Travel Campaign nationwide.
The Japanese government has been running “Go To Campaign” since July 22, 2020. The campaign aims to stimulate the demand for domestic tourism which has fallen as a result of the spread of the coronavirus.
There are 4 types of campaigns; Go To Travel Campaign, Go To Eat Campaign, Go To Event Campaign and Go To Shopping Street Campaign. Currently the Japanese government runs the Go to Travel Campaign, Go to Eat Campaign and Go to Shopping Street Campaign. The Go to Event Campaign is planned to be launched later this year.
The Go to Shopping Street Campaign aims at regional revitalization and currently runs in 34 shopping streets in Japan. Each shopping street has their own event to attract local people. Although the website is only available in Japanese, you can find the list of shopping streets and events here.
In this article, you can learn about the Go to Travel Campaign, how to apply for it, and how much of a discount you are eligible to receive.
All residents in Japan are eligible for this campaign. However, tourists from overseas visiting Japan are not eligible.
There is a special discount pass for foreign passport holders (regardless of visa status - temporary visitor, long-term resident, permanent resident, etc.). For details, please read "Special Discount Pass for Foreigners in Japan: JR EAST Welcome Rail Pass 2020".
What is the “Go to Travel” campaign?
The “Go To Travel” Campaign aims to subsidize up to 50% of travel expenses (upper limit: 20,000 yen per person per night / 10,000 yen per day trip) including accommodation and transport fees. The Japanese government provides discounts of 35% of the total costs and the remaining 15 % is covered by regional coupons which will be issued from October. The coupons can be used at travel destinations for shopping, food, and activities. This means, until the coupons are issued, the highest discount you will be able to receive is only 35% of the travel costs.
Who can apply for the “Go to Travel” campaign?
All residents in Japan are eligible. Tourists from overseas are not eligible.
What kind of travel products are eligible for the campaign?
1. Package Plans: combinations of accommodation and transportation for domestic travel
2. Accommodations only
3. A Day trip (round trip ticket + meal or sightseeing experience plan)
Individually arranged transportation fees are not eligible. However, cruises, night ferries, sleeper trains, and similar items are eligible.
Please make sure that the travel agency or accommodation facility you plan to use supports the campaign.
How much of a discount can you get?
Up to 50% of the travel costs will be subsidized for domestic trips. The maximum amount for a trip per person per night is 20,000 yen, and for the maximum daily trip is 10,000 yen. The 35% of the total costs (about 70% of the discounted amount) will be discounted, and the remaining 15% (about 30% of the discounted amount) will be issued as a “regional coupon” from September—which can be used in the destination area.
While the campaign will start from the 22nd of July, the maximum discount available will only be 35% until the regional coupons are issued in September. Even if you have already booked a trip on or after July 22nd, you can still receive the discount by applying for it (please read further for details).
* Please note: Some travel agencies may apply a different rate which is lower than 35% or restrict the number of times of bookings. Please make sure the discount rate before booking your trips.
Campaign Discount Examples
2 people staying at a hotel at ¥10,000 per person | Total: ¥20,000
50% of ¥20,000 = ¥10,000
Discount: 70% of ¥10,000 = ¥7,000
Regional Coupon: 30% of ¥10,000 = ¥3,000*
Total to Pay = ¥13,000 (¥20,000 - ¥7,000)
2 people staying at a hotel at ¥50,000 per person | Total: ¥100,000
Discount = ¥40,000 (upper limit - ¥20,000 per person)
Discount: 70% of ¥40,000 = ¥28,000
Regional Coupon: 30% of ¥40,000= ¥12,000 (regional coupons) *
Total to Pay = ¥72,000 (¥100,000 - ¥28,000)
[ Example 3]
3 people going on a day trip at ¥30,000 per person | Total: ¥90,000
Discount = ¥30,000 (upper limit - ¥10,000 per person)
Discount: 70% of ¥30,000 = ¥21,000
Regional Coupon: 30% of ¥30,000= ¥9,000 (regional coupons) *
What is a regional coupon?
A regional coupon is a gift certificate issued in units of 1,000 yen per coupon. There are two types of coupons that planned to be issued, a paper coupon and an electronic coupon. The coupons can be used during the period of travel in the destination prefecture and its neighboring prefectures at designated local stores, restaurants, activities, transportation, etc... The coupons cannot be exchanged for cash and change will not be provided. The regional coupons will be issued from October.
How to apply for the “Go to Travel” campaign
You can apply for the campaign directly via a travel agency/reservation website or at an accommodation facility. As for the application method, travelers can apply from the travel companies participating in the campaign (almost all major travel agencies in Japan such as JTB, HIS, Hankyu Travel) and accommodation companies.
For other English-Speaking travel agencies, visit "Best Japanese Travel Agencies for English-speaking Tourists" and contact them if they also run the campaign.
* Please note: Some travel agencies may apply a different rate which is lower than 35%. Please check the discount rate before booking your trip.
When will the campaign end?
The campaign period is planned for to last about 6 months. Since it starts on the 22nd of July, it is expected to last until January, however details have not yet been announced.
Traveling in the New Normal
Enjoy travel while avoiding transmission risks
- ・Wear a face mask to protect you and the people around you.
- ・Smile and nod rather than shaking hands.
- ・Refrain from conversation in public transport.
- ・Don’t forget to check the safety protocols for the destination you plan to visit.
- ・Throughout your travels, always remember to wash your hands.
- ・Avoid visiting places when they are crowded. Visit later to enjoy without crowds.
- ・Practice social distancing for your own peace of mind.
- ・Select your souvenirs with your eyes, not your hands.
- ・Be a smart traveler. Begin the day with a health check.
Practical things to have for traveling in the new normal
Here are some items that could be very useful while traveling. Please click the image to see details.