Islands, in particular those of Shikoku and Kyushu occupy the interest of Taiwanese visiting Japan

AUN Consulting, Inc.

AUN Consulting, Inc. (a company listed with second section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange: 2459, the head office: Bunkyoku, Tokyo, representative director: Akira Shida, here after AUN Consulting), is providing global consulting service in 9 business locations in Asia. Their business covers marketing concerning SEM (search engine marketing) service and online advertising, and assets. In addition, they quickly realized SEO as a business in Asia, and they started the 21st period from June 2018.
AUN Consulting conducted a trend survey of Taiwanese visiting Japan by checking the number of searches.

■ Overview of Taiwanese visiting Japan

As shown in the top graph, the number of visitors to Japan from Taiwan has reached the highest record of about 4.75 million in 2018 (from January to December). This is 4.2 % increase (+0.193 million) from the previous year. However, the growth rate in 2018 is 4.2 %, which is lower than 2017’s 9.5%, and it tends to slow down. In additon, regarding repeaters (those who came Japan more than once), they occupied 81% of all visitors, and the share has remained high in recent years. As shown in the below graph, the market has many mature customers having much knowledge and experience about sightseeing in Japan; approaches from many sides, such as attracting tourists to the provinces, are important. Besides, Japan Tourism Agency and airline companies made efforts as shown below to appeal to Taiwan.
Source: Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO)

・Increasing supply volume of passenger seats for airplanes
・Promoting reconstruction status including invitation of media and providing correct information (In December 2018, thanks to efforts for reconstruction of tourism demand, the number of tourists, which had decreased due to the disaster, recovered and exceeded the year-earlier month.)
・Supporting start of new regular services by puting joint advertising with airlines (Maintain the existing routes and help it to take root)
・Performing promotion involving outdoor activities, and attracting repeaters to the provinces. (They focused on attracting repeaters and inviting them to the provinces by the following measures: making movies and feature articles involving outdoor activities popular in Taiwan, such as marathon, camp, and hiking; expanding contents on online advertising and official web sites; offering participatory campaigns; providing information via SNS.)
・Strengthening promotion of travel to Japan in the central and South of Taiwan such as Gaoxiong and Taichung (They made efforts to cultivate new demands, by strengthening promotion of travel to Japan in the central and South of Taiwan such as Gaoxiong and Taichung, where the number of direct flights is increasing. And also they attended travel fairs, held events for general consumers, and put joint advertising for the aim.)

[Changes in the number of Taiwanese visiting Japan]

Source: The top graph was made by AUN Consulting with referencing “Monthly number of foreign visitors to Japan by nationality (from 2003 to 2018)” provided by Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO)

[About repeaters]

Source: Results of consumer’s behavior survey of foreign visitors to Japan (From July to September 2011), reported by Japan Tourism Agency
Reference table 3: Results of Characters of respondents and contents of travel by nationality or region (group 19) [For sightseeing/leisure] and consumer’s behavior survey of foreign visitors to Japan (From July to September 2017), reported by Japan Tourism Agency
Reference table 3: Results of characters of respondents and contents of travel by nationality or region (group 21) [For sightseeing/leisure] and consumer’s behavior survey of foreign visitors to Japan [the second prompt report] (From July to September 2018), reported by Japan Tourism Agency
Reference 4: The above graph was made by AUN Consulting with referencing “characters of respondents and contents of travel by nationality or region (group 21) [For sightseeing/leisure].

The below graph indicates prefectural visiting rate. (Notes: The green-colored areas are 5 % or more, and yellow-colored areas are 10 % or more.) Among the major tourist sites, decreasing trend of visiting rate is outstandingly clear in Osaka and Kyoto compared to other prefectures. Regarding tourist sites other than major ones, visiting rates of areas on the Japan Sea side and Kyushu district are high and up from the previous year. Ishikawa, which is on the Japan Sea side, has relatively high growth rate; it presumed to be caused by increased number of flights of LCC (Tigerair Taiwan Limited.).

[About visiting rate]

Source: Results of consumer’s behavior survey of foreign visitors to Japan (From July to September 2017), reported by Japan Tourism Agency
Reference table 6: Results of prefectural visiting rate by nationality or region (group 21) [For sightseeing/leisure] and consumer’s behavior survey of foreign visitors to Japan [the second prompt report] (From July to September 2018), reported by Japan Tourism Agency
Reference 8: The above graph was made by AUN Consulting with referencing “prefectural visiting rate by nationality or region (group 21) [For sightseeing/leisure]”.

■ The trend seen from the number of searches

The below graphs show results of survey checking the number of searches about “area name + travel” or each tourist site’s name from January 2017 to December 2018. High increasing rates were seen in the numbers of searches about “Fukuoka travel”, “Okayama travel”, and “Kagoshima travel”. On the contrary, increasing rate of “Okinawa travel” was low. The number of searches about “Fukuoka travel” increased by 37% from 2017 to 2018. The factor of the increase was presumed that the airlines, such as, EVA Air and Tigerair Taiwan started new regular services and expanded the number of flights one after another.

[Fukuoka travel (in traditional Chinese characters)]
The number of searches about “Okayama travel” increased by 22% from 2017 to 2018. Investigating the number of searches about tourist sites’ name in Okayama, it was found that the annual number of searches about “Kurashiki” is far higher than that of “Okayama travel”. Kurashiki city has Great Seto Bridge, which connecting the main island of Japan and Shikoku district. In the city, tourists can enjoy “Kurashikikawafunenagashi (crossing Kurashiki river by boat)”, which is a leisure going down the river in a boat as shown in the photo below. Furthermore, Okayama city has Okayamakorakuen (one of the three outstanding gardens in Japan), where tourists can experience tasteful space unique to Japan. For these reasons, tourism demand of Okayama seems to be increasing. In addition, many tourists go sightseeing mainly in Osaka and Kyoto, and also go to Okayama on a day trip. It is presumed that the number of searches about tourist site’s name, such as “Kurashiki” is higher than that of Okayama travel because of the above reason.

[Okayama travel (in traditional Chinese characters)]

[Kurashiki (in Japanese)]

■ Tourists are interested in islands of Shikoku and Kyushu

The number of searches about “Okinawa travel” declined by 27% from 2017 to 2018. In contrast to the decline, the numbers of searches about “Kagoshima travel” and islands of Shikoku and Kyushu tend to increase. Possible factors for the trend includes: wide distribution of tourism needs by increasing number of repeaters and good access to Chugoku, Shikoku, and Kyushu districts. Besides, regarding famous tourist sites, such as Okinawa, more and more users come to look for detailed sightseeing spot on a search engine by typing it in full. It is presumed that the number of searches about “Okinawa travel” decreased due to the above reason.
Regarding other areas, the numbers of searches about “Ainoshima” known as a cat island and “Okunoshima” known as a rabit island also tended to increase. It is presumed that there is a great need for this kind of islands where tourists can touch animals among some Taiwanese who expect “a sense of different world” of tourist sites.

[Okinawa travel (in traditional Chinese characters)]

[Kagoshima travel (in traditional Chinese characters)]

[Amami Oshima (in Japanese)]

[Miyako-jima (in Japanese)]

[Iejima (in Japanese)]

[Sadojima, Sadogashima (in Japanese)]

[Ainoshima (anothrer name: cat island) (in Japanese)]

[Okunoshima or Okunojima (anothrer name: rabit island) (in Japanese)]

■ Future trend of Taiwanese visiting Japan

Previous survey (reference: a trend survey of Taiwanese visiting Japan reported by AUN Consulting on February 22, 2018) has indicated that mountainous areas and tourist sites with beautiful scenery of nature attracted more interest from Taiwanese tourists. However, in the market of Taiwanese visiting Japan, which has many repeaters, we need to continue to pay attention to wide distribution of tourism needs to the provinces and to analyze the trend in detail.
By the current survey, it was found that the number of searches about tourist site was bigger than that of name of place in some areas. In the market of Taiwanese visiting Japan, FIT (Foreign Independent Tour) has accelerated and tourism needs were distributed to the provinces. On that account, it is necessary to effectively use promotions via SNS and online advertising, which allows us to choose specific target populations. One such case is a promotion involving outdoor activities by Japan Tourism Agency; it resulted in wide distribution of repeaters to the provinces.
AUN Consulting will continue to make efforts to provide valuable information in the searching market of inbound area for clients.

■ Overview of survey

[Main point of survey]
[Annual trend of foreign visitors to Japan in 2018 and a forecast of 2019 vol.2] What is the latest trend among Taiwanese visiting Japan, which is seen from the number of searches?

[Guideline for survey]
Date of survey: From February 1, 2019 to February 14, 2019
Target survey period: From 2017 to 2018
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If you publish this press release on your media, “surveyed by AUN Consulting” should be mentioned, and we kindly ask you to tell us about that.

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