Japan is now offering a free translation hotline to tourists. The multilingual call center is available 24 hours a day. Call centers can be contacted by companies that provide services to tourists, such as car rental centers, hotels, and restaurants, or by the tourist directly.
Japanese authorities rose to the demand for translation needs due to a surge in tourism. Japan has seen an increase in foreign travelers, over fifty percent greater than the previous year.
The call centers, that are run by private companies, are good for anything from communicating with physicians abroad to deciphering how to get from place to place with directions in your own language. The call center currently offers 13 different languages, from Russian to Indonesian.
The government in Japan’s Saga prefecture has come up with a new app to connect tourists with operators who can provide information in their native dialect. Emergency services have gotten involved as well. So if you were to need medical attention or report an accident you would be able to communicate effectively.
The Japan National Tourism Organization is working hard to keep the recent tourist growth in Japan. Travelers who feel comfortable and welcomed are more likely to return or recommend areas of Japan to others.
The 2020 Olympics, which will be held in Tokyo, Japan, may include five new sports. Baseball and softball, along with karate, sports climbing, surfing, and skateboarding are amongst the proposed sports. It would mean an additional 18 events would be added to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
The Japanese organizers made their recommendations to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) which will ultimately be the deciding vote. The IOC will not make their final decisions until August 2016, however baseball and softball are thought to be a shoo-in due to their popularity in Japan. (more…)