(CNN)- Japan, one of the world’s last major holdouts during the pandemic, is dissolving its Covid-19 restrictions and opening its doors to mass tourism.
Beloved for its unique blend of vibrant urban culture and natural beauty, the country is lifting strict restrictions on foreign tourists, according to a tweet from Japan’s Digital Affairs Minister Taro Kono on Thursday.
“Finally, Japan will reopen borders,” the tweet said. “Visa waiver is back, no daily limit and free personal visits.”
The new policy will start from October 11.
“We will lift the upper limit on the number of people entering Japan, lift the ban on personal travel and lift the ban on visa-free travel,” Prime Minister Fumio Kishida told a news conference in New York City on Thursday. United Nations General Assembly meeting.
Elaborating on the lifting of the ban, Kishida said that “on the same day, we plan to launch a campaign to offer domestic travel discounts and event discounts to Japanese residents, and hope that many citizens will take advantage of the offer to support hotel, travel and entertainment during the pandemic. Sectors have been hit hard.”
The move marks a major policy shift in who can enter the country and under what circumstances after nearly 2 1/2 years of strict Covid-19 restrictions.
These restrictions include the number of daily arrivals allowed, strict testing rules for the coronavirus and the requirement to join tour groups for visits.