Japan was lauded for containing the virus during the first wave but has seen a surge in cases, with a major spike in November. Entry to the country remains limited mainly to Japanese nationals and permanent residents.
Japan has some of the most stringent travel restrictions in the world, with 152 countries on its prohibited list. Visitors from Australia, Brunei, China (including Hong Kong and Macau), New Zealand, South Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam may enter the country, although those traveling from China and South Korea can only enter via Tokyo’s Narita airport.
Additionally, those traveling for study, work or to join family (subject to visa requirements) may enter.
Travelers from permitted destinations must undertake a 14-day quarantine, although it is possible to request a PCR test on arrival. A negative result allows you to finish quarantine. While much of Japan remains open for business, cities are far quieter than usual.