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Japan government doubling overseas tourist target for 2020

The Japanese government has boldly raised its goal for annual inbound tourists to 40 million, by 2020.

Source: Japan doubles overseas tourist target for 2020 | The Japan Times

Key takeaways of the Japanese effort:

  1. Tourism has been identified to be an important pillar of Japan growth strategy. The Japanese government now seeks to establish a tourism-based country.
  2. Japan has increased its inbound tourism target to 40 million by 2020.
  3. A record 19.73 million foreign tourists visited Japan in 2015 – a 47.3% increase.
  4. Japan plans to achieve a target of ¥8 trillion in spending from overseas visitors by 2020.
  5. Japan is also easing regulations such as the ban on minpaku private accommodations, in order to meet accommodation demand by tourists.
  6. Japan has stepped up promotional efforts to attract more tourists from Europe, the United States and Australia.
  7. Japan is also structuring campaigns to attract tourists to regional areas and to entice them back for repeat visits.

Another article in the same paper,  reports that The Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Ministry is further looking into ways to increase the accommodation facilities. The easiest way at the moment is to allow Airbnb style accomodations. Doing this will solve the problem of  an increasing number of empty apartments and houses and allow them to be converted into vacation rentals.


The Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Ministry plans to ease restrictions on floor area ratio for hotels in a bid to bring more accommodation on

Source: Japan to ease hotel floor area ratio rules in bid for new development | The Japan Times

What does for these meant for Vacation Rentals Investors?

For one it will be easier for investors to enter the market, however, this may also mean that there will be a lot of competition coming. All these may be good news and a lot of money to be made if only you do it right. In the sharing economy, reviews play a very important part of the business. Not just a landlord-tenants relationship, but a paying guests, with high expectation if you do not want to compete on price only. To be successful in Vacation Rentals, the following 10 criteria will bring you ahead of your competitors.

  1. Quality Photographs – You only have less than 1 second to get your potential guest attention. This is the number 1 investment that you well worth it.
  2. Time. Minimise the number of interactions with guest during booking. As oppose to hotel booking, guest will need to have multiple interaction with the host before getting a place. A good and efficient system is the key.
  3. Customer services.  This will differential a 5 stars review or a 4 stars review. Hence very important to  creates a better rapport and connection throughout the whole transaction, from booking all the way to checkout. Yes, this is similar to a hotel business.
  4. Unique experience. With so many listings on Airbnb and other similar websites, if you are able to highlight the features of your location, such as nearby activities and the types of experiences that the guest could have there. your property is likely to gain more attention than those who simply list the property details.
  5. Price. It is utmost important to create cost effective experience for your guests as that is one of the main reason that they are booking your property. However you could use up-to-date analytical tool to price your listing that you could also make more money so that your pricing is just right.
  6. Response time. Short response time will increase your chances of potential guests booking your property instead of somewhere else.
  7. Housekeeping. Your property need to be clean and meet certain hospitality standards. If you list your property on Airbnb, make sure that its standards are met or else not only you will get a bad review but you may need to refund your guest’s payment.


If you are looking to participate in vacation rentals in Japan, but do not the hassle of doing the above, we are your choice for professional vacation rentals management services. Click here to check out our full services.

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