Japan to extend travel subsidy scheme to support economy: minister
TOKYO. KAZINFORM - Tourism minister Kazuyoshi Akaba said Friday the government is planning to extend its domestic travel subsidy program through the end of June to support the economy hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic, Kyodo reports.
The «Go To Travel» campaign, which was launched in July and offers certain discounts on travel costs, will continue beyond its original end date in late January. The plan will be mentioned in an economic stimulus package to be approved by the government next week.
«We will review the system in stages and respond based on the situation of infections,» Akaba told a press conference.
The government is considering gradually reducing the discount rate in order to make the decline in travel demand as slow as possible once the program ends, he said. It is also looking to increase the rate on weekdays so that fewer people travel using the program on weekends and holidays.
Under the 1.35 trillion yen ($13 billion) scheme, a 35 percent discount is given for hotel and package tour expenses, while an additional 15 percent discount is offered in the form of coupons for shopping and dining at travel destinations.
As of Nov. 15, a total discount of 250.9 billion yen was provided for 52.6 million overnight stays under the campaign.
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