Terrie's Take -- A weekly roundup of news & information from Terrie Lloyd.

TT-941 (Tourism Edition) -- Searching for the Top Luxury Hotels in Setouchi

One of the biggest challenges for the travel agency at Japan Travel is to find places for our luxury clients to stay and memorable things for them to do. It's because of Japan's obsession with with promoting the concept of everyone being middle class.

TT-940 -- Internships - a Legal Try-out for Non-residents

The reality is that there is a worsening shortage of suitable candidates at suitable prices, and so companies are finding it easier to hire from the international marketplace, and use their existing staff to fill the language gaps.

TT-939 (Tourism Edition) -- So, Just Where in Japan Do the Last Cherry Trees Bloom?

Given the fact that nature has the blossoms come when they feel like it, I truly feel sorry for the many thousands of people who arrived in Japan last week, only to find that the prime spots were already done and gone.

TT-938 -- Japanese Recruiting in India Ramps Up, With Side Benefits for the Rest of Us, e-biz news from Japan

One of the hot beds of Japanese learning and thus Japanese corporate recruiting is Pune. The city is the second largest in the state of Maharashtra and is located about 150km to the south-east of Mumbai.

TT-937 (Tourism Edition) -- As East Asia Peaks, Europe is Japan's Next Inbound Travel Frontier

Of the 20+ major European travel agencies that I personally went to visit at ITB (Internationale Tourismus-Börse Berlin), probably 15 of them said they wanted to be in Japan, soon.

TT-936 -- Japan Tobacco Goes Further Down the Rabbit Hole, plus, e-biz news from Japan

Compared to the massive slide in tobacco users in Japan, JT's diversification efforts (not so successful) and aggressive international M&A (much more successful) are both understandable and inevitable.

TT-935 (Tourism Edition) -- Japantravel.bike Up and Running - and the Competitive Landscape

I'm happy to announce that in fact the service is now up and running. If you go to japantravel.bike, you can rent a bike from any DBS bike port in Japan, with nothing more than a credit card.

TT-934 -- Ashinaga: Orphans Have a Benefactor on Their Side, e-biz news from Japan

Every now and again, something different comes along, and in February I was asked to hold a company startup seminar for the Ashinaga organization, which helps kids without parents.

TT-933 (Tourism Edition) -- Kyoto: Overcrowded and Unpleasant - Something Needs to be Done

The unhappy campers are those residents living downtown, especially those around major attractions such as the big temples, and Gion and Pontocho. Here, the press of humanity is unrelenting.

TT-932 -- Is the Cryptocurrency Challenge Too Hard for Japan's FSA? e-biz news from Japan.

Normally in a new sector as wild and western as NEM and Bitcoin, especially after a half billion dollar heist at Coincheck, there would be a significant negative reaction by the Japanese financial authorities.

TT-931 (Tourism Edition) -- Wasted Opportunity at Sydney World Travel Expo

I'm writing this edition of my Tourist Take from Sydney, Australia. Three weeks ago I was approached by Liberta Inc's CEO, Keijiro Sawano, to assist with a regional revitalization initiative called Heartland.

TT-930 -- Alishan, the Organic Food Pioneers in Japan, ebiz news in Japan

The couple Jack Bayles and Fay Chen have been instrumental in helping Japanese discover organic and healthy foods even as the nation forgets its own heritage and takes on a Western diet.

TT-929 (Tourism Edition) -- End of Easy Gains in Japan Inbound Travel Sector?

The Japan Tourism Agency (JTA) had more good news to share last week, when they announced that Japan had attracted 28,961,000 foreign travelers in calendar year 2017, up 19.3% on 2016. They spent a record JPY4.416trn (US$40bn).

TT-928 -- Five Predictions for 2018, e-Biz News From Japan

How did we do with our 2017 picks? We got one right (Trump and a business pickup in his first year), two wrong (Inbound tourism is still pumping, and Toyota is not doing anything notable in Electric Vehicles yet), and two others that are still developing.