Japan ready for Rugby World Cup boost

Japan stadium which will host games at the Rugby World Cup 2019.

The 2015 Rugby World Cup generated nearly £2.3 billion (NZD$4.4 billion) in total economic output, with £1.1 billion directly added to the UK GDP. This year’s RWC in Japan is expected to bring even more money in, hoping to deliver around ¥216.6 billion (NZD$2.86 billion) to the Japanese economy.

While big cities such as Tokyo and Osaka draw in countless tourists each year, the RWC also promises to bring travellers to smaller places like the ten other cities around Japan where games will be played.

“There will be a magnet effect for hosting cities, and we expect this will encourage people to explore Japan more widely,” said Tom Sawayanagi, head of Hotels & Hospitality Group at JLL Japan.

Over 400,000 extra visitors are expected to come to Japan for the tournament, but even before the competition, the Japanese tourism sector has been experiencing a boom.

“The inbound tourism boom started in 2013 when the new government of Shinzo Abe weakened the yen and deregulate visa requirements for Asian visitors.”

Last year visitor numbers in Japan hit 23.47 million, up 10.7 percent from the year prior.

While most of Japan’s visitors come from the Asia Pacific, RWC 2019 will bring in lots of tourists from big rugby playing nations particularly from Europe, promising to boost the number of incoming visitors.