The Art of Travel in Japan has an update to share regarding COVID-19 and current travel to Japan. For specific questions, please contact Marie Pilaud, North American Regional Manager with The Art of Travel, directly via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or via telephone at (646) 412-5850.
Is travel to Japan suspended or discouraged?
Travel to or from Japan is not suspended by any world government. People returning to their home countries after visiting Japan are not facing quarantine upon arrival, although heat scans are being employed at many airports for all international arrivals.
Currently, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) classifies the virus as Level 2 and advises enhanced hygiene precautions for those visiting Japan (e.g. frequent hand washing, alcohol-based hand sanitizers, etc.). According to the CDC,“Older adults and those with chronic medical conditions should consider postponing nonessential travel.”
Are travel services within Japan disrupted?
At this time, all travel services are continuing without significant disruption, including accommodation, transportation, and guided touring and experiences. Some touring sights such as the National Museum have announced temporary closures, and The Art of Travel is continuing to monitor the situation and provide updates to affected travelers.
Is there anything else to note?
Upon arrival in Japan, travelers may notice that many around them are wearing surgical masks. While the image of normal citizens wearing surgical masks might seem alarming to westerners, it's important to understand that wearing such masks is a regular practice in Asia. People wear masks throughout the year and for a wide variety of reasons, such as flu season, spring pollen season, etc. Masks are worn both by healthy individuals seeking to protect themselves, and by those who are already sick but wish to minimize the spread of their sickness to others.
Please note that some of The Art of Travel's partner service professionals (guides, drivers, etc.) may choose to wear masks during tours in order to protect themselves.
The Art of Travel strongly encourage all agents and guests to keep themselves up-to-date using reliable and trustworthy news sources such as the World Health Organization (WHO) Daily Situation Reports and the reports offered by the U.S.-based Center for Disease Control (CDC).
Please feel free to also visit the Health and Safety section of The Art of Travel's website for more information pertaining to coronavirus.