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Travel & Leisure

Foreign tourist spending in Japan rebounds close to pre-COVID levels

Credit card use surged after easing of entry restrictions in October

Tourists from Taiwan wearing Japanese traditional kimono clothes pose for a photograph in the Asakusa district, a popular sightseeing spot in Tokyo on Jan. 9.    © Reuters

TOKYO -- Spending by foreigners visiting Japan has recovered close to pre-pandemic levels, according to a new analysis of credit card data.

Sumitomo Mitsui Card and the Japan Research Institute analyzed credit card transaction data to extract spending by tourists from abroad. The credit card data accounted for around 3% of total inbound tourist spending, according to Japan's official figures -- a significant enough sample to show trends, the researchers said.

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