Lifestyle

Japan Bans Foreign Visitors From 111 Countries And Regions Including The Philippines

You may have to shelve your Japan travel plans for a little while longer.
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Is Japan first on your bucket list once air travel resumes normal operations? Sorry to burst your bubble, but it looks like you'll have to put that dream on hold for now. Japan has extended their entry ban to 11 more countries—including the Philippines—in a continued effort to curb the spread of COVID-19 within the country. 

The decision was announced by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in a government task force meeting last Monday. Included in the new list of restricted countries are Afghanistan, Argentina, Bangladesh, El Salvador, Ghana, Guinea, India, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, South Africa, and Tajikistan.

With this measure in place, foreign nationals who’ve visited the aforementioned countries within the last 14 days will be turned away at the airport starting tomorrow, May 27, 2020.

A total of 111 countries and regions are now part of the entry ban, which currently includes the Philippines, the United States, China, South Korea, and all of Europe.

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See below for the list of all areas included in Japan’s travel advisory.

Asia    

Brunei, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Macau, Malaysia, Maldives, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, Viet Nam

Oceania    

Australia, New Zealand

North America   

Canada, United States

Latin America and the Caribbean   

Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Bahamas, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Honduras, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Saint Christopher and Nevis, Uruguay

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Europe    

Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, North Macedonia, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, San Marino, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Vatican

Middle East    

Bahrain, Iran, Israel, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates

Africa    

Cape Verde, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Guinea-Bissau, Mauritius, Morocco, Sao Tome and Principe

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Prime Minister Abe also mentioned in the same meeting that Japan is set to maintain their current border control measures until the end of June. Notable of these regulations are the suspension of visas, and a 14-day quarantine period for all those entering the country.

According to Kyodo News, the measures taken by Japan to impede the coronavirus pandemic has cast a critical blow on their economy. “Inbound figures were down 99.9 percent in April from a year earlier to just 2,900,” they revealed in an article.

In a recent article by The Japan Times, the Japanese government is reportedly gearing up to cover half of their tourists' travel expenses once the coronavirus threat has declined, using a fund worth ¥1.35 trillion (or approximately $12.5 billion). "The program could start in July if novel coronavirus infections subside soon," Japan Tourism Agency chief Hiroshi Tabata told a news conference Wednesday of last week. 

This story originally appeared on Preview.ph.

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* Minor edits have been made by the Candymag.com editors.

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Katherine Go A day ago

Cold Food

The most thrilling and delightful moment of any school day is opening up your baon during breaks. There is always so much excitement in unveiling your homemade meal and snacks housed inside matching heat-insulating containers. Because preparing packed meals is an age-old tradition of showing parental love, loved ones pour effort into curating a nutritious meal accompanied by a selection of side dishes, desserts, and beverages daily; it reminds us that we are being taken care of, even from far away.

Baon plays a significant role in a Filipino childhood. Almost every Filipino child comes to school with baon made especially for them by their parents or household helpers. Even Filipinos in the labor force continue to bring baon for varying reasons: to save money, recycle leftovers, cater to personal taste, or attend to special needs. Nonetheless, eating your baon is a heart-warming experience that allows Filipinos to bring a piece of home along with them wherever they go.

Even other cultures practice making packed lunch. In Japan, mothers create bento--Japanese meals in partitioned boxes. Because of the popularity of bento, trends have emerged, such as the Kyaraben, or character-themed bento. Naturally, Japanese parents and students began competing for who had the cutest and tastiest bento, and this is similar to what I have witnessed in my own childhood. I remember seeing my classmates sharing their snacks and lunches. They would compare and boast about their parents' or yayas’ cooking. In my case, I never had the chance to join in the competition or indulge in homemade cooking. Up until this day, I have never brought any baon to school.

For a long time, I envied others. As trivial or petty as it may seem, not having baon became a problem for my grade school self. During that time, I had to sit in a separate cafeteria away from my friends because the kids who bought food were assigned to sit elsewhere. You could consider me spoiled, but I wanted to experience something most kids did. I had food at home, so what made it so hard to bring some with me to school?

Now that I am on my final year in high school I have come to realize the benefits of purchasing my own food. Since I spent on food everyday, I learned to budget my allowance at a young age. Over the years, I learned to practice self-control whenever I wanted to eat more greasy fries and drink sweetened beverages. I have tasted the strangest viands at the school cafeterias, and I have repeatedly satiated myself over my latest delicious discoveries. Despite the struggles, I am thankful that I have never had baon because of what I have learned. Not to mention, I never had to experience eating cold food.

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