TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Taiwan was the most popular destination for overseas school trips among Japanese high schools over the 2016 school year, Mainichi reported.
According to the research on school trips conducted by the Educational Tour Institute, a Tokyo-based public interest foundation, during the 2016 school year, 262 Japanese high schools, amounting to 41,878 students, chose Taiwan as the destination for their school trips. Meanwhile, 254 schools including 36,661 students visited the United States, including Guam and Saipan.
Some reasons suggested for the rise of Taiwan as a popular tourist destination for high schools are; Taiwan's Japan-friendly attitude, the safe environment, and low travel expenses, the report said.
In contrast, the number of high school students visiting South Korea and China for excursions has continued to decrease over a 10-year period. Only 3,246 students went to South Korea, and 3,398 went to China in 2016.
The Sewol ferry incident in South Korea which led to the death of many South Korean high schoolers, also caused the cancellation of many school trips planned to the country. As for China, it is thought that a series of anti-Japan demonstrations following the Senkaku Islands dispute made China appear as unwelcoming to Japanese students, the Mainichi report said.