Travel A 'Sayonara Tax' Will Charge Anyone Who Wants to Leave Japan—Tourists and Citizens Alike

22:30  13 april  2018
22:30  13 april  2018 Source:   mentalfloss.com

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Any such sayonara tax would be certain to draw fire from tourists , as well as from the tourism and aviation industries. If foreigners and Japanese were each charged 1,000 yen when they leave Japan , the arrangement would bring in about 40 billion yen to national coffers.

Any such sayonara tax would be certain to draw fire from tourists , as well as from the tourism and aviation industries. If foreigners and Japanese were each charged 1,000 yen when they leave Japan , the arrangement would bring in about 40 billion yen to national coffers.

a man in a red shirt: A 'Sayonara Tax' Will Charge Anyone Who Wants to Leave Japan—Tourists and Citizens Alike© iStock A 'Sayonara Tax' Will Charge Anyone Who Wants to Leave Japan—Tourists and Citizens Alike If you're leaving Japan, better take out your wallet. The Japanese Parliament, the Diet, has passed what Channel NewsAsia calls the "sayonara tax," a required fee to leave the country.

As Condé Nast Traveler reports, the tax will cost about $9 (¥1000), and will apply to any traveler leaving Japan by plane or ship—whether they're tourists leaving the country or Japanese residents going on vacation. Children under age 2 get a freebie, as does anyone who is just in Japan for a quick layover and is leaving the country within 24 hours of arrival.

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The government plans to impose a “ sayonara tax ” of 1,000 yen (.70) on tourists and Japanese who leave the country starting in fiscal 2019. The roughly 40 billion yen in expected revenue from the new tax will be spent on the promotion of tourism , although government offices other than the Japan

TOKYO: From January 2019, travellers leaving Japan will have to pay a departure tax of ¥1,000 (US.40), Japanese media reported on The Diet, or Parliament, has passed the legislation and the new levy, coined the " sayonara tax ", is Japan has in recent years seen a boost in tourist arrivals

The money—an estimated ¥43 billion a year—will go towards improving Japan's tourism infrastructure. That includes adding facial recognition gates at airports, paying for things like multilingual guides at national tourist sites, and promoting Japanese travel around the world. Singapore's Straits Times reports that part of the revenue will also go to expanding free public Wi-Fi and electronic payment systems on public transit.

Japan isn't the first country to impose a departure tax on people leaving the country, but it's often rolled into your airfare, so you might not notice. Many of them are a lot more expensive than Japan's, too. Australia charges around $46, while the UK's tax varies based on the type of plane, number of passengers, and distance flown—and can be from $18 to $670 for long flights.

Tokyo is hosting the Olympics in 2020, which could lead to a huge revenue increase when millions of tourists descend upon the city to watch the Games. Parliament specifically limited the use of the new tax to tourism-related projects, though, so the money can't be used elsewhere in the government budget—just to that sweet, sweet public-bus Wi-Fi.

[h/t Condé Nast Traveler]

There's a new world leader on the ranking of world's most powerful passport .
The ranking for the world's most powerful passport has changed once again, this time with Japan topping the leaderboard. In the latest edition of the Henley Passport Index, Japan edges out former chart-toppers Singapore and Germany for offering their passport-holders visa-free access to 189 destinations. Germany and Singapore fall to second place by a slim margin, with 188 destinations. While European countries in the Schengen Area have traditionally dominated the index, analysts point to the rising power of Asian nations, thanks to increasingly strong international trade and diplomatic relations.

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