In 2015, there were an estimated 19.7 million tourists to Japan with around 43 percent being Chinese spending an estimated 3.5 trillion yen ($30 billion). The average Chinese tourist to Japan spent ¥152,991 per person (about 7,960 yuan or about $1,244). During the Chinese October Golden Week holiday from October 1-7, 2015 Chinese tourists to Japan spent more than ¥100 billion (US$830 million) on shopping. Chinese tourists came for “bakugai” (explosive shopping). The 19.7 million tourists is just short of the 20 million the Japanese government aims to pull off by 2020, when Tokyo hosts the Olympic Games.
With the huge influx of Chinese tourists, it looks like a few Chinese entrepreneurs have been cashing in on the Chinese tourist boom. In Fukuoka, several Chinese were apparently illegally working as tour guides. One reason might be do to the number of Chinese tourists coming to Japan and not enough guides to get them to all the right shops for bakugai. Another reason for their working illegally, may also be that more and more Chinese tourists to Japan are deciding to head out alone. More Chinese visiting Japan are deciding to get out into the countryside of Japan to see what is there rather then spending their time shopping. It appears that these Chinese “illegal” tour guides were probably getting some type of kick back perhaps from the shops they took Chinese tourists to for their “discriminating bakugai experience” while in Japan.
Source: Mainichi News
Chinese woman deported from Japan for illegally working as tour guide
March 4, 2016 (Mainichi Japan)
FUKUOKA (Kyodo) — A Chinese woman in her 30s has been deported from Japan for illegally working as a tour guide for foreign tourists in a southwestern Japan city and getting paid for taking them to duty-free shops, investigative sources said Thursday.
The woman, who was in Japan on a dependent visa, is believed to have earned about 30 million yen ($263,000) from duty-free shops in Fukuoka for taking tourists to the shops between May and November last year.
She was also ordered to pay fines for violating immigration laws by working as a tour guide without a work permit or proper license, they said.
Meanwhile, the police sent papers to prosecutors on a Chinese student in his 20s regarding similar violations, the sources said. He earned at least 46 million yen from duty-free shops in the city between September 2014 and September last year.
The police also sent papers to prosecutors on six executives of three tourist agencies and three duty-free shops in Fukuoka for violating the law by hiring such tour guides and paying them.
The number of illegal tour guides seems to be increasing on the back of the growing number of foreign tourists to Japan.
A Japan Tourism Agency official said that it is receiving numbers of complaints these days from tourists, especially Chinese, saying their tour guide was not properly licensed and tried to get them to buy expensive goods.