Visiting Japan? Prepare to pay departure tax

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 03 2019 07:38 PM

This picture taken on April 12, 2018 shows an airplane taking off over a protest board against runway construction at a farmland encircled by Narita airport, Tokyo's main international gateway, in Chiba prefecture. Kazuhiro Nogi, AFP

MANILA – Planning a trip to Japan soon? Make sure you add 1,000 yen (or P488.74 as of Thursday) to your travel budget.

Starting January 7, the Japanese government will collect a departure tax of 1,000 yen from each person leaving their country by aircraft or ship, regardless of nationality.

According to a report from the Japan Times, the revenue collected from the new levy will be used “to accommodate more foreign visitors to the country, develop tourism bases, and improve immigration procedures.”

More specifically, it will be used to set up facial recognition gates at airports, multilingual information boards, and cashless payment terminals for public transport, the report added.

The Japanese government has set a goal of increasing foreign tourists to 40 million by 2020, when Tokyo hosts the Olympics and the Paralympics.

Those who are leaving Japan within 24 hours of their transit entry will be exempted from the departure tax, as well as children under two years old.

More Filipinos have been going to Japan over the past few years following the country’s relaxed visa policy and discounted tickets offered by local airlines.