COVID-19 clampdown: Japan closes borders to foreign nationals

Dec 26, 2020

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Borders are continuing to tighten around the world as governments respond to the threat of a new, more contagious strain of the coronavirus.

Effective on Monday, Dec. 28, the Japanese government will bar most foreign nationals in an effort to curb the spread of the virus. Entry bans were already in place for international travelers from more than 150 countries all over the world, including the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom.

The latest move, which will last until at least the end of January, simply builds upon the nation’s already strict entry requirements, and even Japanese nationals and foreigners with residency returning from short business trips, according to Bloomberg, must now comply with a 14-day quarantine, along with multiple COVID-19 tests.

For more TPG news delivered each morning to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

Japan, once a glowing example of successful pandemic control, is now experiencing its highest-ever number of COVID-19 cases. And the highly infectious coronavirus variant has already been confirmed in Japan. In Tokyo, nearly 950 new cases were recorded on Saturday — a grim record for the island nation.

It’s a discouraging turn for Japan, which was widely reported to be planning to welcome back international travelers in the spring in preparation for the rescheduled Summer Olympics.

Related: A country-by-country guide to visiting Asia

Countries around the world have turned to new border restrictions, increased testing and enhanced screening measures in a last-ditch effort to contain the new coronavirus strain, which was first identified in England in September. In the U.S., travelers from the U.K. must now provide a negative COVID-19 test result taken within 72 hours before departure.

But experts fear the precautions may be far too late. In addition to Japan, Bloomberg reported that the new strain — which is thought to be 70% more transmissible — has already been reported in France, Switzerland, Germany, Ireland and Sweden, among others.

Feature image by Kyodo News / Contributor / Getty Images. 

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 80,000 Points

TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,650

CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Plus earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases within your first year of account opening.
  • Earn 2X points on dining including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.
  • With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Get up to $60 back on an eligible Peloton Digital or All-Access Membership through 12/31/2021, and get full access to their workout library through the Peloton app, including cardio, running, strength, yoga, and more. Take classes using a phone, tablet, or TV. No fitness equipment is required.
Regular APR
15.99%-22.99% Variable
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.