Government aims to boost superyacht visitation

The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism is eyeing superyachts—pleasure ships owned by wealthy foreigners—as a special target for tourism promotion efforts, especially as they tend to have long port stays and spend a lot of money during their visits to the country.

There are almost 10,000 superyachts globally, but only ten of them visited Japan last year, usually preferring locations like Caribbean and Mediterranean countries.

The ministry hopes to change this pattern dramatically by working with the Japan Tourism Agency to facilitate customs procedures and to create attractions aimed at this class of visitor.

This project may ultimately dovetail quite nicely with IR construction projects in the mid-2020s, as many of the candidate locations have been giving thought to ship traffic playing a key role in bringing visitors to their resorts.