The Japanese Government will start collecting a 1,000 yen departure tax from Monday next week. People travelling by aircraft or ship will be subject to the new departure tax.
The new regulation that was passed last April will be added to existing travel fares and taxes. However, people who have purchased tickets prior to this date will be free from the tax. People that purchase tickets on or after the Monday 7th January 2019 will incur the tax.
Those in transit for less than 24 hours or children under 2 years will also be exempt from the departure tax.
The Government plans to reinvest the revenue collected from the tax back into the tourism sector. In the short-term, airports already have plans underway to introduce facial recognition gates. They also want to provide more multi-lingual signage and cashless payment systems.
In the calendar year of 2018, tourism numbers peaked over 30 million. So, with numbers expected to continue rising all the way to the Olympics, revenue from the duty will also increase. The Japanese Government wants to use the income to boost tourism infrastructure in the long-term. Namely, they hope to streamline immigration procedures and set up more support centres.