Overseas bookings skyrocket as 10-day Golden Week offers Japan rare chance to enjoy longer trips
Japan Times -- Feb 16
Reservations for travel overseas are surging for this year's 10-day Golden Week period, during which the Imperial succession is set to take place, according to a JTB Corp. official.

As of late January, the number of overseas reservations in the period from April 27 to May 6 had jumped 2.5-fold from a year before, the official said.

Many package tours have already sold out at leading travel agencies, which are rushing to arrange additional tours using chartered flights.

This year's Golden Week includes 10 straight days of vacation including May 1, which has been designated as a one-off national holiday for when Crown Prince Naruhito will ascend the throne, following Emperor Akihito's abdication April 30.

At H.I.S. Co., the number of reservations for overseas trips during Golden Week had more than tripled from the previous year as of mid-January.

Golden Week trips usually go on sale after the New Year's holidays. This time, however, "trips to popular destinations were mostly sold out in mid-November last year," an H.I.S. official said.

For those without any workdays during this year's Golden Week, it is easier to plan ahead and fix travel dates earlier than usual, the official said.

Reservations have increased for trips to distant locations such as Europe and the United States, which tend to be avoided during short holiday periods.

News source: Japan Times
May 22
Tokyo DisneySea has begun its largest expansion project ever. (NHK)
May 22
The Supreme Court and other legal professionals in Japan have hosted a symposium to mark the tenth anniversary of the introduction of the country's lay judge system. (NHK)
May 21
The Cultural Affairs Agency on Monday announced 16 additions to its Japan Heritage list of tangible and intangible cultural properties that have been preserved based on unique regional histories and traditions, including narratives. (Japan Times)
May 21
Japanese Emperor Naruhito transplanted rice seedlings in a paddy at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo on Monday. (NHK)
May 21
A 24-year-old man was arrested Monday on suspicion of threatening to kill a member of a sister group of the popular girl band AKB48, police said. (Japan Today)
May 21
Japan's economy unexpectedly grew in the first quarter, giving Prime Minister Shinzo Abe some momentum to go ahead with his plan to raise the country's consumption tax this fall. (Nikkei)
May 21
A Japanese lawmaker said Monday he will not resign as a Diet member after opposition parties submitted a joint motion urging him to quit for alluding to Japan waging war with Russia to regain control of a group of disputed islands. (Japan Today)
May 21
A special six-car Mickey Mouse-themed shinkansen bullet train has begun serving southwestern Japan's Kyushu region, with images of the beloved character splashed across its yellow livery and interiors. (Kyodo)
May 21
ith tatami mats, noren curtains and a zen garden, this is one of the most stunning and affordable ways to travel in Japan. (soranews24.com)
May 20
Officials of Japan's southwestern island town of Yakushima say all the people stranded on a mountain have descended by Sunday evening. (NHK)