Go To Travel Campaign Inspiration for Your Family!
2020 is coming to a close and to say it's been an unusual year would be putting it very mildly! The novel coronavirus upended plans and created a lot of (reasonable!) fear and uncertainty. As the situation has thankfully improved in Japan, the government is offering a promotion for domestic entertainment and travel - to make it easier financially and to encourage those of us who can't easily leave Japan right now to explore locally instead!
The GoTo campaign is a government subsidy program that reimburses, either through point-of-sale discounts or vouchers, up to 50 percent of your travel, dining or entertainment costs (up to a certain amount). It's a great opportunity for families who want to enjoy a night out, or take a long weekend trip, but don't want to or can't afford to shell out!
You can get a more detailed breakdown of the campaign from Time Out Tokyo here. And keep reading for some inspiration for your family's next vacation!
Known as a tourist utopia, Kyoto is understandably a lot less crowded these days, with international tourism way, way down. It's a great opportunity for your family to enjoy this lovely city without having to push through thousands of people at every stop. Plus, peak fall foliage viewing is slated for late November to early December, making it the perfect time to head to Kinkaku-ji for stunning nature (and photo ops!).
Our long-time favorite, The Tokyo Chapter, also has an awesome round-up of places to stay. Just make sure you double-check that they are participating in the program!
Head to southern Japan to explore this incredible city! A can't-miss attraction your family is sure to love? Uminonakamichi Seaside Park! It's a massive national park (six kilometers long) that has tons of nature, playgrounds and an amusement park, just to name some of its features. There's also a petting zoo, in case anyone in your household has been longing to cuddle with a guinea pig! As a bonus, there are also many family-friendly resorts nearby, meaning you can easily enjoy the park and head back to your hotel to recharge when you're tuckered out! Check out the Luigans if you're looking for a little luxury (at a discount!).
If your family loves winter sports, Furano is a great family-friendly destination for ski bunnies of all ages. In fact, reviews on trip advisor call it the best ski resort for children, thanks in part to the free lift tickerts for kids under age 12. There's even childcare for parents who want to hit the slopes separate from their kids (CareFinder babysitters would also be happy to help!).
Whether you're looking for an onsen with a view, a quaint chalet or a no-nonsense inn, Booking.com has a host of options in the area to consider. You'll also automatically see the GoTo discount applied!
Not every vacation requires a trip on the shinkansen or an airplane ride. Sometimes, just getting out of your own home (especially if you've been working remotely and/or the kids have been doing online classes) is enough to relax and reset. And, to be fair, there's no city on earth like Tokyo!
Then take advantage of your savings on airfare to splurge at one of Tokyo's nicest hotels. And feel free to have a date night - CareFinder has tons of babysitters in Tokyo who can watch the kids in the room while you enjoy a night on the town!
GoTo Eat in Tokyo (coming soon!)
This will come as no surprise to parents, but not every restaurant is conducive to dining with children, especially young ones. If you want to take advantage of the GoTo campaign for date night, we recommend it! And if you're looking to take the whole family out, we'll also have suggestions on kid-friendly options. The campaign in Tokyo begins November 20, so stay tuned!