How to Do If Going to Japan but Have Tattoos?

How to Do If Going to Japan but Have Tattoos?

The Japanese people’s aversion to tattoos stems from the punishment of tattooing criminals dating back to the Edo period. Tattoos were forbidden in this country in 1872, but were later reinstated in 1948.

Japanese people still have prejudices toward tattoos nowadays. They believe that this form of art is related with the Yakuza, a Japanese gang that specialized in tattooing its members’ entire bodies.

Tattooed people are frequently denied entrance to public places such as saunas, beaches, gyms, hot springs, and swimming pools…

Tattoos are not forbidden, but they can inhibit visitors from fully experiencing Japan.

Tourists can conceal tattoos by wearing long-sleeved shirts, long pants, or accessories (bracelets, scarves,…). Furthermore, if the tattoo is minor, they can conceal it with a bandage or by using thick makeup.

Some places have signs preventing people from having tattoos, therefore visitors must plan ahead of time or use language translation tools to avoid making mistakes.

Guests who choose Airbnb housing (sharing accommodation or renting a property from locals) must openly discuss having a tattoo with the homeowner before visiting. This allows tourists to avoid making others uncomfortable while simultaneously expressing respect for the host country’s culture.

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