So my wife and I have a trip to Japan scheduled for April 16th. We would be traveling in the Tokyo, Hiroshima, Hakone, and Kyoto regions. In light if the earthquake and subsequent radiation leak, should we go to Japan next month? The state department advises against it until April 1st, and they say the are not sure what the recommendation will be after that. The airline will waive our change fee so long as we fly somewhere in the next year. We will probably lose a few hundred if we were to postpone the trip, but clearly that is a small price to pay if it’s dangerous there. The other issue is that the impetus for the trip is a wedding we would be attending. As of now, the wedding is still on. We’d like to attend the wedding if at all possible. So, should we cancel.
Any “radiation leak” is honestly the least of your worries.
But it sounds like you’re traveling to parts of Japan that were not hit terribly hard by the earthquake, so as long as the infrastructure remains, I would go. They can use the tourism dollars.
I’d worry less about the radiation, unless the Mrs. is pregnant, and more about the logistics.
Will internal travel to the places you want to go be disrupted?
Will there still be power outages (one electronic component supplier I work with is saying they may be in a power usage reduction mode until the end of April)?
Keep a watch on the travel advisory and if they renew it after April 1st. Your travel insurance likely won’t cover anything if you go under the advisory.
For now, it’s just touch-and-go. I know how you feel, I was supposed to be flying out to Tokyo on the 21st.
I don’t think it’s too soon to ask the question, but I think it’s a little soon to give a clear answer. (so I didn’t vote in the poll).
That said, I agree with worrying more about the logistics and less about radiation.
I’d assume that the State Department will be conservative–odds are you (or any other generic individual) will be safer than they think you will be, but . . .
Is the wedding in Tokyo or in the south? If it’s in the south, perhaps you could fly into a southern city and avoid the Tokyo area entirely.
That’s my opinion, too. Can you fly into Osaka?
At the way things are currently, I would say go, but keep an eye on the news.
In similar news, I have friends who were planning on visiting on the 25th. We’re still mulling our options over.