Media Releases

Media Releases

WIN a chance for your own Japan experience!

The Japan Tourism Agency has recently launched a website, which provides information on outdoor activities in Japan. Some of these include: hiking and trekking in Mt. Fuji (Yamanashi and Shizuoka); rock climbing in Ogawayama (Nagano); bicycle touring around Tokyo city; mountain biking in Niseko (Hokkaido); white water rafting in Tone River (Gunma); canyoning in Hakuba (Nagano) and relaxing in an onsen (hot springs) in Kusatsu (Gunma). The website offers recommendations on four popular locations for each outdoor activity, with information on the areas and links to their respective websites.

Furthermore, during the period of 1st February, 2011 untill 28th February, 2011, some great prizes are on offer to those who enter the Lucky Draw on the website. These include a pair of round-trip Economy Class tickets from Sydney to Narita (Tokyo); 5-nights accommodation in some of Japan’s most popular resorts and a number of goodies for the outdoor lovers. Visit the website now to enter the draw and begin your own outdoor adventure in Japan.

For more information on outdoor adventures, visit:
For information on the white season, visit :


Airlines of the JAL Group Named Most Punctual for 2nd Consecutive Year

Best On-time Arrival Performance among International Airlines – Japan Airlines International Best On-time Arrival Performance among Regional Asian Airlines – J-AIR

Tokyo, January 26, 2011: Airlines of the JAL Group – Japan Airlines International (JAL) and J-AIR, have been identified as having the best on-time arrival performance respectively among global airlines and airlines in Asia, by Conducive Technology Corporation*1 – a data provider of reliable flight information to the transportation industry. Statistics tabulated by Conducive’s FlightStats show 89.90%*2 of the 180,343 scheduled international and domestic flights operated by JALI in the calendar year 2010 arrived at their destinations as scheduled, rendering it the most punctual airline among 33 major global carriers*3 evaluated for this award. Regionally, J-AIR emerged first among 9 contending airlines in the category of most on-time carrier in Asia*4, a title held by another JAL Group airline JAL Express in 2009.

An awards ceremony will be held today at the headquarters of the JAL Group in Tokyo where its President Masaru Onishi will receive the “FlightStats 2010 On-Time Performance Service Awards” for both airlines from Mr. Jeffrey Kennedy, Chief Executive Officer of Conducive Technology Corporation.

“We could not have achieved this without the understanding and cooperation of valued passengers who arrive at their boarding gates promptly, and without the dedication and efforts of our employees,” said Masaru Onishi. “We would like to thank them for ensuring the on-time departures and arrivals of our flights and thereby help us retain this title for a second year.”The JAL Group is firmly committed to providing customers with the safest standards in flight operations and high quality products and services. It also regards punctuality as a fundamental quality of an airline group and will continue to endeavor to maintain on-time departures so as to be a reliable carrier of customers’ choice.

  • 1 Conducive Technology Corp. is a data services provider focused on delivering innovative information solutions to the travel and logistics industries ( Conducive’s FlightStats ( product delivers real-time and historical flight performance information. Conducive Technology has broad experience in travel, including development of high-volume e-commerce web sites and web infrastructure for several major airlines. The privately held company is led by President Jeffrey Kennedy and is based in Portland, Oregon.
  • 2 The FlightStats On-time Performance Service (OPS) Awards recognize airlines around the world that deliver the highest percentage of flights to their arrival gates within 15 minutes of the scheduled arrival time or earlier.
  • 3 The 33 major global airlines evaluated for this award each operated more than 30,000 flights in 2010, in at least 3 of the following regions: Asia, Africa, Europe, America and the Pacific.
  • 4 The 9 Asian carriers evaluated for this award each operated more than 20,000 flights in Asia, in 2010

JAL Group Re-establishes Identity with Corporate Policy and Logo Change

The JAL Group (JAL) today will adopt a new corporate policy and announced its decision to change its logo from April 1, 2011; symbolizing a fresh start for the airline group with its strengthened commitment to society and reinvigorated determination of the management and all employees.

The motif that will be used is of a soaring Japanese red-crown crane with its wings extended in full flight – an auspicious icon of Japan representing the high spirits of the Japanese people and their sensitive attention to detail. First registered as a trademark of Japan Airlines in August 1959, the circular crane mark was painted on the entire fleet during the period of JAL’s international network expansion. It stayed a main feature of the JAL livery for more than 40 years and became an unmistakable image representing Japan Airlines and the country it connected the world with. Bearing this mark on its aircraft, JAL displayed the uniqueness and progress of Japan to the world and it often invoked a sense of pride and familiarity in many Japanese as well as its loyal customers.

The symbol of the crane has come to be associated with the nation’s distinct hallmarks of pristine quality and reliability. For customers, JAL is determined to safeguard these values of the Japanese culture and to continue reflecting its quintessential hospitality from the heart in the airline’s authentic services – a promise that is now embodied in the Group’s new corporate policy unveiled today.

“Japan Airlines started out as a pioneer and ventured on a path where no other company in Japan explored,” said JAL Group President Masaru Onishi. “Today, we firmly resolve to recapture the unity and challenging spirit that our employees possessed at the time of JAL’s founding, and together, we will propel the company forward over the hurdles that lie ahead to again stand at the forefront of this ever-evolving industry.”
“Now, represented by the high-flying crane, we hereby renew our commitment to provide our valued customers with the highest levels of service, and to diligently raise our corporate value so that the JAL Group can once again contribute to the advancement of society.”

The first aircraft to be painted with the new logo will be a Boeing 767-300ER for international flights. With the exception of staff uniforms which will remain unchanged, corporate items bearing the current logo such as signage, name tags and stationery will gradually be phased out over the next few years.

Restaurant Search Function newly available on JNTO website

Japan National Tourism (JNTO) in conjunction with the creators of the online Japan Restaurant Guide, Gourmet Navigator Inc. (Gournavi) have launched a multilingual restaurant search function on the JNTO website. It is now available in English, Chinese and Korean.

In addition to the specific searches of restaurant type, location and price range, the website also offers search options for English availability at the restaurants, such as English menus and English speaking staff.

Japanese cuisine was the main motivation for Australians travelling to Japan in 2009, according to results of the JNTO’s annual survey of international visitors released on July 30, 2010.

The survey also showed that Australians are not alone in their love of Japanese food with 58.5 percent of all respondents citing Japanese food as the main purpose for their travel. Cuisine also rated number one, came first place, top of the list in a JNTO survey about what visitors most enjoyed about their stay in Japan.

It is evident that the increasing popularity of Japanese cuisine worldwide is having a very positive impact on tourism, drawing food lovers who seek out authentic culinary experiences to Japan.

JNTO Restaurant Search

Ishin Hotels offers discounts to JR Pass holders

Effective immediately all travellers holding a valid Japan Rail Pass will be able to take advantage of special rates at all Ishin Hotels across Japan. All hotels in the group are offering Japan Rail Pass holders a standard 5% discount off the Best Available Rate (BAR) when booking on Seasonal and special rates will also be made available.

The offer is available at Ishin’s 19 hotels across Japan including the b hotels– located in key destinations of Tokyo, Nagoya, Kobe and Hakata – and Hilton Narita, International Garden Hotel Narita, Kyoto Royal Hotel & Spa plus many more.
All Ishin hotels are centrally located in the major sightseeing, shopping, leisure and entertainment areas making them the ideal choice for international travellers.

The b hotel brand has already become well known amongst international travellers for their unique contemporary design and additional features including comfortable beds with duvet, complimentary high-speed internet access and flat screen TVs. Also available in the lobby are complimentary tea and coffee-making facilities and computer terminal with complimentary internet access.

“We have identified that a number of our international guests travel across Japan using a JR Pass – and these guests like to stay in our hotels due to their key locations minutes from the shopping, dining and entertainment areas, convenient for both business and leisure,” says Annette MacAndrew, Vice President, Sales and Marketing.

“We also found that many of our guests had stayed in at least one other Ishin property before, and were delighted with the services and facilities provided. We are therefore happy to provide a solution across all hotels, and ensure a simple bookings process for all JR Pass Holders at great rates.”
JR Pass holders can make their bookings easily through by using the Private Access code, “JRPASS” (in upper case) for both the User Name and Password, and entering their Japan Rail Pass number in the booking.

Japan unveils Visit Japan Year 2010 autumn campaign

The Japan Tourism Agency (JTA) has unveiled the Visit Japan Year 2010 Autumn Campaign which will run September 1 through November 30, 2010, in a bid to attract more international visitors to Japan during the upcoming cooler months.

The unveiling of the Autumn Campaign coincided with the re-launch of the new look Visit Japan Year 2010 campaign website ( which gives details of the special offers and gifts available during the campaign at participating department stores, restaurants, tourist attractions, and hotels and ryokan across Japan.

The website lists the experiences Japan offers under the categories of sightseeing, gourmet, activities, entertainment, shopping, and accommodations to facilitate easy travel planning.

Furthermore, the website features a series of short interviews with 50 people who talk about what they love about Japan and recommend to visitors.

Autumn is one of the best seasons to visit Japan, thanks to mild temperatures and spectacular fiery crimson and golden yellow autumn foliage which covers the country from north to south. Delicious seasonal cuisine and local festivals are also highlights of autumn in Japan.

The JTA is aiming to attract 10 million visitors to Japan this year and preliminary figures estimated by the Japan National Tourism Organization - (JNTO) indicate that international visitor arrivals between January 1 and July 31, 2010 totalled 5,080,700 – up 36.3 percent on 2009 figures.

Post 2010, the JTA is aiming to attract 15 million visitors per year by 2013 and 30 million per year in the years beyond.

Authentic cuisine draws Australians to Japan

Japanese cuisine was the main motivation for Australians travelling to Japan in 2009, according to results of the Japan National Tourism Organization -’s (JNTO) annual survey of international visitors released on July 30, 2010.

Seventy two percent of Australian respondents cited Japanese cuisine as the number one reason for their trip.

When asked which particular Japanese foods they really enjoyed during their stay 51.6 percent of respondents cited sushi, followed by sashimi (28.1 percent), ramen noodles (21.9 percent), udon noodles (17.2 percent), and tempura (14.1 percent).

These results show that Australians enjoy a range of Japanese food with their interest going beyond just the ubiquitous sushi.

Other motivations for visiting Japan cited by Australians were shopping which came in second, followed by visiting historic landmarks, visiting busy downtown areas and experiencing the local lifestyle.

The survey also showed that Australians are not alone in their love of Japanese food with 58.5 percent of all respondents citing Japanese food as the main purpose for their travel. This resulted in Japanese cuisine being ranked number one in the entire survey, overtaking shopping which had occupied the top position each year since 2006.

It is evident that the increasing popularity of Japanese cuisine worldwide is having a very positive impact on tourism, drawing food lovers who seek out authentic culinary experiences to Japan.

The survey was conducted in the departures area of Japan’s eight major international airports and one major seaport. Respondents were international visitors who had stayed in Japan for between two and 90 days.

Among the Japanese food Australians enjoyed in Japan were sushi, sashimi and tempura.


Ishin Hotels’ great summer sale rates

Great Summer Sale Rates are available now at all Ishin Hotels across Japan until 30 September 2010. The rates include accommodation, breakfast and a special amenity gift hand towel to take home for each guest.

“We have received positive feedback in relation to recent promotional campaigns we have run at Ishin Hotels Group,” says Annette MacAndrew, VP Sales and Marketing.

“Our guests like to see value ads in our packages, particularly in these tougher economic times. It is therefore nice for us to be able to offer special seasonal rates, along an amenity in line with the current season.”

Twin/double Summer Sale Package rates are available from (yen):

  • Hilton Narita from 20,000
  • International Garden Hotel Narita from 9,500
  • Narita Port Hotel from 9,400
  • the b roppongi from 15,000
  • the b akasaka from 15,000
  • the b sangenjaya from 14,100
  • the b ochanomizu from 9,500
  • the b ikebukuro from 12,000
  • Hotel Sunroute Akasaka from 12,200
  • Hachioji Plaza Hotel from 8,500
  • Utsunomiya Port Hotel from 12,900
  • the b nagoya from 8,800
  • Kyoto Royal Hotel & Spa from 12,000
  • the b kobe from 10,900
  • the b hakata from 7,300
  • Kagoshima Tokyu Hotel from 9,900
  • Okinawa Port Hotel from 9,000
  • Sunmarina Hotel from 14,000
  • Okinawa Port Hotel from 11,600

All rates are listed as ‘from’ rates and are subject to availability at the hotel at the time of booking. Rates may vary on different days of the week. The offer is available from 1 July until 30 September 2010 and is subject to availability. For reservations please go to or call the hotel directly.

Japan Tourism relaunches online image library

The Japan National Tourism Organization - (JNTO) now offers more than 6000 images in its new look online photo librarywhich was re-launched on August 4.

The new improved Japan Photo Library has 6128 registered images of Japan including temples, shrines and castles, festivals and events, traditional food and sake, hot springs, shopping and pop culture.

The new site which is now available in three languages (English, Korean and Chinese) features an advanced search option, improved cataloging system, map search function, and related and similar colour image display, making it easier to find the perfect image.

The library offers high (350 dpi) resolution images for publishing as well as low (72 dpi) resolution images for use as wallpaper and on personal websites.

Those who wish to download images can create a member account (complimentary) by simply completing the online membership form accessed from the library’s top page. Registered users can download images after agreeing to the terms and conditions set out on the library site.

Japan Photo Library


Japan: one of the world’s safest countries

Japan has been ranked as the third most peaceful country in the world in the recently released 2010 Global Peace Index (GPI) compiled by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP).

The results of the fourth annual GPI which is composed of 23 peace indicators including safety and security in society, and 32 related factors including civil liberties and hostility to foreigners/private property, reinforces that Japan is one of the safest countries in the world.

While Japan is already well known for its high level of safety and low levels of crime, this ranking reconfirms the advantages of choosing Japan as a travel destination, and is especially reassuring for those travelling alone or with children.

The 2010 GPI reported that Japan remained free from civil unrest in 2009, while violent crimes and homicides are rare and terrorist acts highly unlikely. Respect for human rights is high and stringent laws prohibit the possession of firearms.

In addition to a superior level of safety and security, the general honesty in Japanese society is evident by the number and type of items handed in at Lost and Found counters in the Tokyo Metropolitan area.

According to the most recent figures released by the Metropolitan Police Department, 2,332,904 items were handed in as ‘found items’ in Tokyo in 2008. Among the most common items were umbrellas, clothing, wallets, ID cards and mobile phones. The amount of cash among the lost property totaled 2.7 billion yen which equates to approximately $36.9 million.

Japan came in third behind New Zealand and Iceland in the 2010 Global Peace Index. The 2010 GPI ranked 149 nations of the world by their peacefulness.

2010 Global Peace Index

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