Why Japan's Halloween Hotspot Orders Tourists To "Stay Away!" This Year

Why Japan’s Halloween Hotspot Orders Tourists To “Stay Away!” This Year

They launched a new “Stay Away!” campaign.

Shibuya, Tokyo, is known for being one of the liveliest cities in Japan.

| Unseen Japan

Tourists flock to this area every year at the end of October to celebrate Halloween. Locals and foreigners alike dress up in creative costumes to fill the spooky-filled season with fond memories.

| Unseen Japan
| Unseen Japan

This year, however, city officials have canceled all Halloween activities, posting reminders online in both Japanese and English.

They told their followers: “Shibuya City would like to ask tourists not to celebrate Halloween around Shibuya Station from October 27th to 31st.” They banned drinking in advance to limit unwanted behavior.

During this period, drinking on the streets near Shibuya Station will be prohibited by local ordinance between 6 PM-5 AM.

— Shibuya City

More than 560,000 people passed the famous Shibuya crossing from October 28-30, 2022. Majority walked around inebriated in costumes. Though the city increased their security measures last year in order to keep the crowds controlled, they drew the line this time around. The mayor of the city held a press conference where he declared, “No events for Halloween on Shibuya streets” in 2023.

| Unseen Japan

The catalyst of this decision-making was the horrific Seoul Halloween Crowd Crush incident which happened on October 29, 2022. Police estimated 159 people were killed and 196 others were injured.

I am extremely worried that what happened in Seoul, Korea last year could easily happen in Shibuya. I don’t want anyone coming near Shibuya train station for Halloween purposes during the Halloween season.

— Shibuya City Mayor

159 people were killed and 196 others were injured in the Itaewon crowd crush incident | New York Times

The city still plans to dispatch 100 policemen to patrol the Shibuya station area just in case.

Source: Unseen Japan and Sora News 24

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