In an exclusive interview with Travel And Tour World, Masashi Imai, the Director of Marketing / Promotion, Tourist Promotion Dept. Tokyo Convention & Visitors Bureau shares his thoughts on the Tokyo’s leisure and MICE tourism infrastructure and also explains how the city and the country as well is moving towards normalcy.
Travel And Tour World: What are the challenges Tokyo Tourism facing during this COVID-19 pandemic?
Masashi Imai: There are restrictions on activities related to tourism and cross-border travel. The challenge is that the number of tourists has plummeted and the tourism industry in Tokyo is facing very difficult conditions.
Travel And Tour World: How the Tokyo Tourism playing a major role to promote the city’s tourist attractions?
Masashi Imai: In order to promote Tokyo as a premier destination for international leisure travel, we have established the Tokyo Tourism representative (Reps) in Europe, America, Australia and Asia. The surrounding areas are also important to us. We are also attracting tourists from Los Angeles, New York, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Australia, Canada, China, Korea, Taiwan and Malaysia.
Travel And Tour World: What are the future planning of promotion of Tokyo to Europe, Asia and United States ?
Masashi Imai: In order to recover the number of tourists that dropped significantly during COVID19, we will continue to conduct PR activities for overseas markets such as Europe, the United States, Australia, and Asia, do promotion by participating in travel expos, and exposure in the media etc. We will also work to create business opportunities for the tourism industry in Tokyo.
In addition, we speculate not only on “quantity” such as the number of visitors, but also on “quality”. In this moment, many people perceive to learn or do something good by even travel. Tokyo, where tradition and technology are well harmonized and generate new tings every day, will offer and provide vivid information by introducing variety of experience in Tokyo to fulfill their demand.
Travel And Tour World: What kind of tourists you are expecting in this tourism season?
Masashi Imai: This year, with the impact of COVID19 and restrictions on travel, honestly, we perceive it is tough to expect many visitors. During those difficult time, we would like to continue to promote by exposing positive image of Tokyo, like exceptional charms and breathtaking efficiency.