Welcome to the August 2020 edition of the Japan Meetings & Events Update for Australia and New Zealand.

• In the past few months, the Japanese government has introduced a series of measures to curb the spread of the coronavirus. Check our website to find updated information on the entry bans.

• You can find up-to-date statistics on the number of cases and details on Japan’s policy to prevent and control the epidemic on the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare’s website.

• Domestically, Japan completely lifted its state of emergency on 25th May, as it reached its target of 0.5 daily cases of infection per 100,000 people. Nevertheless, the authorities remain cautious and call for vigilance.

JAPAN Best Incentive Travel Awards 2020
Applications close 16 September!

Have you organized an incentive travel to Japan recently? Then consider applying to our new edition of the JAPAN Best Incentive Travel Awards (applications from 15th July to 16th September). Three incentive programs will be selected based on demonstrated excellence in the aspects appreciated by clients or participants, the originality of its planning, and the contribution to the destination visited in Japan. The winners will receive a trophy, a trip to Japan (1 person, business class, 3 hotel nights) or support for their promotion in the media. Click here to find more information and to participate!

Japan Updates

Japan Convention Management Association releases Guidelines for MICE events

JCMA has released an English version of its Guidelines on Hosting MICE Events in the COVID-19 Pandemic. This 15-page PDF is a translation of the guidelines which have been made available in Japanese for event suppliers in Japan as well.

Osaka announces new guidelines for MICE events

The Osaka Convention & Tourism Bureau has taken into consideration the government policies, the views of MICE industry partners and the guidance of infectious disease experts to formulate these guidelines aimed at business event managers, in order to mitigate infection risk and provide recommendations on operations management.

Kyoto announces FY2020 subsidies for MICE events


With funding provided by Kyoto City and Kyoto Prefecture, the Kyoto Convention & Visitors Bureau offers a variety of subsidies for attracting and holding MICE events. Applications are now being accepted for FY2020 subsidies, which include new and expanded subsidy options. Additionally, with continuing restrictions on foreign travelers due to the novel coronavirus, Kyoto Prefecture has relaxed nationality requirements for international meetings, expanded eligibility to include small-scale international meetings, and raised the maximum subsidy amounts.  Note: The Japanese fiscal year runs April through March.

Tokyo 2020-2021 Meetings & Incentives Support

Tokyo Convention and Visitors Bureau has also updated their support program for corporate meetings and incentive travel to Tokyo for FY2020. Click the link above to go straight to the new brochure introducing the special offers, or click here for the application form and overview of the special programs and site visit support availab.e

*As a reminder, in last month's issue we introduced Tokyo's guidelines for the new normal as well.

Sapporo Convention Bureau launches new website


The newly revamped website includes latest information and resources regarding Covid-19, inspiration and resources for Association Meetings as well as Incentive & Business Events; a new Unique Venues & Team Building Guide; information on Sapporo's Carbon Offset Program; and more.

Sapporo Convention Bureau has also become more active on LinkedIn, starting a "6 Feet Campaign" to promote social distancing, as well as just this week announcing their first international conference since the Covid-19 outbreak.

Hotel and Venue Updates

PACIFICO Yokohama North opened April

The new meeting space PACIFICO Yokohama North opened April 24th of this year. The newest addition to Yokohama’s “all-in-one” business events venue can hold up to a 6,000 PAX event on its lower levels and has 42 meeting rooms on its upper levels. The entire PACIFICO Yokohama has established measures to stop the spread of COVID-19 such as complete venue disinfection, constant ventilation and requiring face masks for staff.

Tokyo event venue Happo-en posts COVID-19 guidelines

The event venue Happo-en, located in central Tokyo, has exemplary guidelines that it has published as it begins to accommodate domestic events. Happo-en is a luxury venue that marries traditional esthetic and charm with modern technology and sensibilities. Click the link above to view the details of the guidelines, but as a brief overview, rules include: Staff are required to wear masks at all times and have temperatures taken daily; prior to guests’ entry, all tables and chairs are thoroughly cleaned and disinfected; a 3 foot gap is set up between each guest’s seat; the building is ventilated every hour for 10 minutes. 

Educational and Inspirational Tools

JNTO Sydney YouTube educational tools


We have launched a webinar series with in-depth information on Japan. Whilst the information in this series is somewhat general and targeted at leisure travel advisors, incentive travel planners may also find it useful for increasing destination knowledge. Please note this series does not cover any Covid-specific travel restrictions or measures.

Many of our partners in Japan have begun launching 360-degree interactive VR videos. We have collated some of these from various regions across Japan into a consolidated YouTube playlist to give you a taste of the country as a whole.

Explore Japan for a few minutes with our VR Video!


We still have to wait a little longer to travel to Japan again. But what if, in the meantime, you visited it virtually? Thanks to our VR 360° video, you can immerse yourself in some of Japan’s most iconic spots from your home or office. Click the link, switch to full screen and use your mouse to look around you!

Many local convention bureaus in Japan have a financial support scheme for MICE groups who have selected their city as a destination for their event (subject to certain requirements). 

Some also have a support scheme to subsidise inspections for groups that are still in the process of deciding on a location.

If you have a group which has decided on or is considering Japan as a destination, please let me know and JNTO can enquire with the local convention bureaus on your behalf to see if your group is eligible for any subsidies they may provide. 

JNTO also has limited support available for incentive groups only which meet certain criteria. If you have an incentive group which has decided on or is considering Japan, please let me know and I can give you more information on this.
You are receiving this email as either I or one of my colleagues have met you at a MICE related event or exchanged emails with you in the past. This newsletter will be sent out periodically, featuring news from Japan in the Meetings & Events industry tailored to the Australia and New Zealand markets.


Remember to bookmark www.japanmeetings.org for resources to help you with planning your meeting, incentive or event. These include photos and videos, venue search, supplier search, statistics, model courses, and more!

For agents with leisure clients, please see the Travel Trade section of the local JNTO Sydney website for resources.

If you can't find what you need on the above websites, please contact me directly at sally_miles@jnto.go.jp or by phone at +61 2 9279 3177 and I will be happy to assist however I can.

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