by Sam Leaver


22 June 2018




In 2018 more than 31 million tourists visited Japan making it the fastest growing holiday destination of the decade.

Japan has set a target of achieving 40 million visitors by the year 2020 with factors such as the Rugby World Cup and the Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games helping their cause along with a strong exchange rate; you’ll get ¥145 for every pound.

The “Land of the Rising Sun” is famous for Mount Fuji, its capital Tokyo and world-famous cuisine, but in the build-up to your trip one thing not to forget is to arrange your Travel Insurance.

Do I need Travel Insurance when travelling to Japan?

Yes, universal healthcare in Japan is only free if you are a resident, visitors residing and working in Japan can enrol if they are staying for more than 12 months. Tourists and visitors cannot enrol in to receiving universal healthcare making Travel Insurance even more important. Having Travel Insurance will mean that you will avoid having to pay expensive medical bills if you do require medical treatment during your visit.

What if I need treatment for my pre-existing medical condition when I’m in Japan?

When buying your Travel Insurance for Japan you should read the medical declaration carefully to make sure you have declared all of your pre-existing medical conditions. Once you have purchased your policy will receive a copy of your important documents – check your documents carefully to make sure nothing has been missed. This will ensure that you are covered for any treatment for your pre-existing medical conditions when you are in Japan.

There is a zero tolerance policy in relation to drugs and as a result some common prescriptions and over-the counter medicines are banned; ignorance is not considered a form of defence. Vicks inhalers, certain cold and flu medication and painkillers containing Codeine are some of the banned substances. You should check the status of your medicine with your travel agent or the Japanese Embassy before you travel.

What do I need to consider when choosing travel insurance for Japan?

Japan is set to host a number of major sporting events in the coming years including the 2019 Rugby World Cup and the 2020 Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Consider the activities you plan on doing when you visit Japan. You don’t need specialist cover if you’re going to one of the sporting events, however you will need to check if you require winter-sports or hazardous activities cover if you plan on going skiing or climbing Mount Fuji. If you need more help with what cover you require call our award-winning staff on 0800 294 2969.

What will travel insurance cover in Japan?

Unfortunately wherever you go on holiday things can go wrong, like losing your bags, falling ill or being a victim of crime – having Travel Insurance may not stop those things happening, but it will minimise the financial impact. Compare prices from different insurers on our website and you can get cover for:

  • Medical Treatment costs up to £15,000,000

  • Cancellation of your holiday up to £12,500 (£50,000 available – subject to an additional charge)

  • Cover for your baggage if it is lost, stolen or damaged up to £3,000

  • Cover for your cash and money if it is lost or stolen up to £750

  • Loss of your travel documents up to £400

More useful information:
Do I need a visa?

If you have a British passport you can visit Japan for up to 90 days without a visa.

If you are concerned whether you’re eligible to travel to Japan, for example if you have a criminal conviction please contact your travel agent or the Japanese Embassy. If you plan on working or staying for longer than 90 days remember to apply for a visa before departure – visas will not be issued to you on arrival.


The Yen (¥‎) is the currency of Japan and comes in the form of coins and notes. The most frequently used bank notes are ¥1000, ¥5000 and ¥10,000. Cash is king in Japan, foreign debit and credit cards such as Cirrus, Maestro, Link and Delta are not commonly accepted. Check with your bank before you travel however it is advised that you take sufficient cash.


The most widely spoken language in Japan is Japanese and there are a number of different dialects. Most young people in major cities and tourist areas will speak basic English. You’ll also notice that many signs and menus in major cities and tourist hotspots are written in English.


Respect and politeness is part of Japanese culture and as a result tipping in Japan is not customary. Saying please and thank you to your waiter is all that is required. Do not be offended if your tip is refused as the Japanese believe that good service is included in the price that you pay, however any tip will be gratefully received by staff in tourist areas.

Travel Insurance:

Compare Travel Insurance for your trip to Japan. Get quotes from multiple specialist insurers on our website or call our insurance experts FREE on 0800 294 2969 and we’ll match the right policy to you and your trip.

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