I am in Kyoto for a business trip.
I don’t remember another time when Gion was so quiet.
How will the shutdown of cities during the COVID-19 pandemic affect them post-pandemic?
Digital transformation is needed to bridge the inconsistency between “Members Only” and “Promoting Inbound Tourism”.
In particular, the economy of Kyoto that is dependent on tourism has seen a revenue drop of 70% in recent years due to COVID-19.
We must take this opportunity to make structural reforms.
While it is not possible to make all “exclusive entertainment” more accessible by selling them online, we could first try to get the existing customers to go online and make it easier to join in casually.
Even now, there are delicacies and confectionaries that cannot be bought without lining up, so we could establish a trust score system on online stores to market them in a more proactive way.
For example, newcomers who have fulfilled more bookings will get a higher trust score and be given VIP treatment after the pandemic. They may also open the door to the acquaintances of customers with high trust scores. Including foreign tourists.
In other words, they should not limit their trust to just the regional confines and customs of Kyoto, but make new standards of trust to turn it into a city that is able to thrive in the 21st century.
Another good idea would be to implement vaccine tourism before the cold season next year and give every visitor a free vaccine shot.
While going through the menu at the yakitori store, “Rebiya Korekido”, I was impressed by the photo of the Suntory factory in Yamazaki as well as the large variety of whiskeys on offer, so I asked and found out that the head chef Tatsuyuki Akiyama is from Yamazaki. We’re from the same hometown!
By the way, my last glass of Yamazaki was at the bar of “Hotel The Mitsui Kyoto” where I stayed at. This is the only place that serves alcohol now. Only for hotel guests.