The Asia Pacific Superyacht Association has announced that the process for Japan luxury yacht charters has been significantly simplified, making cruising through the region easier than ever before.
Previously, luxury yacht charters in Japanese waters took place under rules more closely aligned with commercial shipping: A Crew Pass only lasted 14 days, and vessels had to complete full customs, immigration and other clearance declarations for every leg of a cruise.
Now, privately owned and commercially registered superyachts have no time limit for staying in Japan, and crews will be issued with a Multiple Landing Permit (also known as a Crew Pass) which only expires when the crewmember leaves on the yacht or by flight. Certain nationalities are also eligible for the benefit of a 90-day ‘tourist visa waiver’ which will allow them to travel and see the country on their own time.
Moreover, luxury yachts can apply for and receive a ‘Naikosen’, which is essentially a cruising permit that allows the vessel to operate as if a domestic Japanese vessel, cruising from one port to the next in Japan without going through the cumbersome customs and immigration clearances of the past.
To receive these benefits, luxury yachts will need to use the services of a recognised yachting agent that has the experience and government permissions to apply for yacht entry into Japan. For the country’s accelerated post-pandemic economic recovery, private jets and luxury domestic travel such as private limousines also have fewer restrictions.
The relaxation of restrictions has already had a positive effect on cruising in the region and Super Yacht Logistics Japan (SYL Japan) has declared that a number of luxury yachts are already planning to cruise there in 2022.