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Visas Revoked as More Chinese Tourists Overstay in Japan

Recently there has been an increase in the number of Chinese tourists leaving their tour groups without authorization while visiting Japan. According to insiders in China’s tourism industry, more than ten groups of Chinese tourists have gone missing from their tours to Japan during May and June of this year.

Japan has decided to stop issuing visas to freelancers and low-income groups, and the Japanese government has revoked the visa issuance rights of 11 travel agencies in Guangdong and other provinces for tours to Japan. Another 15 provinces and cities have been added to a “high-risk” list and are being denied visas.

In recent months there have been multiple incidents of Chinese tourists from various travel agencies defecting from their tour groups and illegally overstaying in Japan during their visits. This phenomenon is particularly prevalent among 6-day tour groups from Guangdong to Osaka and Kyoto. As a result, Japan has tightened visa requirements for Chinese tourists across the board.

A leaked notice from the Japanese Consulate General in Guangzhou states that 11 travel agencies, including Guangdong Tieqing International Cultural Tourism Group and Shenzhen China Merchants International Travel Co., Ltd., have had their rights to apply for Japanese tourist visas revoked due to violations.

Travel industry insiders reveal that, in just the first part of June, there were already two tour groups from Guangdong with tour members defecting in Japan. Defectors included tourists from Fujian province. Japanese authorities are now requiring additional financial documentation from tour members when applying for visas.

Japan is denying visas to freelancers, those with low education levels or with no social insurance, as well as residents of provinces like Liaoning, Heilongjiang, Jilin and Shandong, which are considered high-risk areas for illegal overstays when touring in Japan.

Source: Radio Free Asia, June 18, 2024