Australia—a multicultural nation—provides students with second language education from primary school onward. There are estimated to be approximately 410,000 Japanese language learners in the country, mainly in primary and secondary education*. In terms of the number of Japanese language learners in the world, Australia ranks fourth after China, Indonesia, and South Korea, and is up by 10,000 learners compared to 2018. This is one of the reasons why the Australian market is characterized by its active promotion of educational travel to Japan.
Event name：Japan Educational Tours Seminar
Organizer：JNTO Sydney Office, G.E.T EDUCATIONAL TOURS
Date：Monday, October 9, 2023
Local participant criteria：Teachers who are considering (or may consider) organizing educational tours to Japan and travel agencies that handle educational travel products
On October 9 2023, JNTO Sydney Office, in collaboration with G.E.T EDUCATIONAL TOURS, a travel agency specializing in educational travel to Japan, hosted a seminar in Melbourne, inviting approximately 30 school teachers who were considering organizing an educational tour to Japan as well as travel agencies that handle educational travel products.
The seminar was attended by representatives from Japanese local governments, theme parks, and other organizations from Japan who showcased content for educational travel. Organizations that were unable to participate sent pamphlets in ahead of time, which we distributed at the venue. The participants listened to the presentations with great interest, and at each table, they shared their own experiences of visiting Japan and exchanged opinions with teachers who had not yet conducted educational travel programs. We received comments from teachers considering educational travel such as, “I thought that the presentations could have included the benefits to the students – bringing back to the curriculum, explaining how some aspects are educational” and “This seminar contained lots of useful information and some things I had not considered before.” In the four-point satisfaction survey, all the attending teachers gave the event the highest rating (‘satisfied’). One presenter from Japan presented an activity from their venue in which participants could create their own figurines using a 3D scanner. Met with the occasional gasp of surprise and wonder, these kinds of exhibits helped generate interest among educational travel operators who are yet to sell Japanese products.
The participant questionnaire** showed that 91% of the participants are considering an educational tour to Japan by 2025, and 69% of them are planning to visit sometime in 2024. As for other aspects, as shown in the graph below, the intended frequency of educational travel is mainly either once a year or every other year. The results of another question demonstrated that nearly 90% of the respondents decide on a travel agency one year in advance.
Budget was the top priority for overseas travel. In one question asking what factors deter (or have deterred them) from visiting Japan on an educational school tour, more than 70% of the respondents answered “budget,” indicating that they have the impression that traveling to Japan entails large costs.
“Hands-on & interactive cultural experiences,” “school exchanges,” and “speaking Japanese” topped the list of experiences/attractions in Japan that students are interested in. We believe that showcasing activities helps participants formulate a concrete image of a visit to Japan, and providing detailed up-to-date information related to entry and transportation helps teachers feel more comfortable sending students to Japan.
**23 collected, teachers only
Frequency of educational travel
Factors to impact decision-making of planning educational travel
Experiences/attractions in Japan students are interested in
Travel agencies have informed us that both domestic and international educational travel in the Australian market is recovering much faster than expected since pandemic lockdowns have ended. Educational travel to Japan is highly anticipated as a valuable experience for children, and the market is expected to see return visits by families and individuals after visiting Japan on an educational tour.
JNTO Sydney Office is considering holding seminars on educational travel to Japan on an ongoing basis and will continue to reach out to learners.
*Source: The Japan Foundation, Survey on Japanese-Language Education Abroad 2021