While Japan has been closed off to tourists for much of the last two years, the country came out on top in the latest Travel and Tourism Development Index by the World Economic Forum. The report covers a series of benchmarks and measures of the sustainable development of the travel and tourism industry around the globe. In particular, this year’s index focuses on rebuilding the travel and tourism sector after the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Out of the 117 economies covered in the 2021 index, Japan tops the list for the very first time, ranking high for its number of cultural resources as well as infrastructure. Following Japan are the United States and Spain, in that order. In the top ten, fellow Asia-Pacific destinations include Australia in seventh and Singapore at ninth place.
Apart from its transport networks and rich cultural heritage, Japan also scored well on other measures, ranking ninth for health and hygiene as well as 15th for safety and security.
Some of the sectors where Japan did not rank highly include price competitiveness (96th) and prioritisation of travel and tourism (42nd) – perhaps due to the pandemic border closures.
Despite setbacks, travel has been slowly recovering. Japan has been easing border restrictions since March, with more rules set to be relaxed from June 1. The country is also allowing a limited number of tourists to enter on a trial basis from this month.
For more information on the Travel and Tourism Development Index, visit the website.
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