Wednesday, December 1, 2010



Tourism has greatly impacted Japan in many ways, both positive and negative.
The growth of tourism definitely brought in more revenue for Japan as a whole and has contributed greatly to Japan's economic. Not only will it generate tourists receipts for Japan, it also helps to increase sales and revenue in sectors that are affected by tourism like F&B, accommodation, retail, attractions etc. Having a better economy also means that more jobs will be created and lesser people will be unemployed in Japan.

Because of a better economy, Japan's government can then invest in building and improving infrastructures like airport, shopping malls, attractions and many many more. This in return allows the Japanese to have more choices for leisure and recreation purposes. It not only benefits the tourists, but also benefits the locals. This is so because it improves the locals' quality of life.

As we all know, Japan is rich in their own culture and traditions. Tourists go to Japan to experience the way and life of a Japanese and to learn about their culture and different kind of traditions. Because of this, it will push Japan to preserve their culture to attract more tourists into the country. This is also known as cultural tourism. An example of cultural tourism would be visits to Japan's temples and shrines to learn more about their religious views and beliefs.

However, good things aside, tourism can also cause Japan to lose its own culture due to the influence of western culture. As tourists starts streaming into Japan, cultures are being exchanged and Japan might lose some of their own culture in the process of cultural exchange. This is inevitable as the western influence on Japan is too strong and they are slowly losing some of their own cultures. For example, Japanese kids are starting to behave more like kids in the western country with more rowdy and rude behaviour. As compared to the past, Japanese children are all very obedient. This is quite sad as Japanese are well known for their good and accommodating behaviour.

In conclusion, I feel that yes, tourism definitely has commoditised the cultures and traditions of Japan but only to a certain extent. Japan used to be a country so rich in their own cultures and believes but is now diluted due to the influx of tourists into the country. Everyone that goes to Japan will try their onsen (public bath) and it does not make it special and exclusive to Japan anymore. Also because the government is trying to use their unique traditions and culture to "sell" their country, this results in Japan's culture being spread too widely across the globe. Tourism may also cause Japan to lose their own identity in the long run, to the point where nothing is distinctive to Japan anymore.

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