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Airports are nearly empty amid coronavirus outbreak, photos show

FOX News

With spring break around the corner, many Americans are wondering if it's safe to go on vacation. Fox News medical contributor Dr. Nicole Saphier weighs in. Once-bustling airports around the world are becoming much less bustling as thousands of flights are canceled, schedules are reduced, and travel restrictions are issued amid the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak. On Monday, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the director-general of the World Health Organization (WHO), said that the most concerning outbreaks outside of China are currently in South Korea, Italy, Iran and Japan, according to Reuters. The same day, Vice President Mike Pence said that airports in Italy and South Korea would be implementing more intensive health screenings for all travelers.

Keisei stations to offer multilingual tablets for overseas visitor info

The Japan Times

Keisei Electric Railway Co. said Tuesday that it plans to introduce tablets equipped with a multilingual translation app for the increasing number of foreign visitors to Japan at 65 of its stations, beginning Thursday. Apple Inc.'s iPad Air 2 tablets will be distributed to all Keisei Electric Railway stations except for Higashi-Matsudo, Shin-Kamagaya, Chiba New Town Chuo and Inba Nihon-Idai stations, which are also on its Narita Sky Access line. The tablets, with map, connection guide and writing software, will provide information in 29 languages, including English, Chinese and Korean. The company, which operates train services between Tokyo and Narita International Airport in Chiba Prefecture aims to provide foreign tourists with quick and accurate guidance via the tablets. The tablets will also be available at counters on the arrival floors within the terminal buildings of Narita airport.

Narita and Haneda, the major airports serving Tokyo, set for large-scale capacity boost ahead of 2020 Olympics

The Japan Times

Japan's biggest airport, Haneda, is set to add 50 international routes per day as, starting in late March, the government for the first time will allow aircraft to fly over central Tokyo during the day. That would raise the number of international passengers at Haneda -- officially known as Tokyo International Airport -- by 7 million to reach 25 million per year, allowing the hub to leapfrog Kansai International Airport as the nation's second-busiest in terms of international passenger traffic after Narita International Airport in Chiba Prefecture. With the additional flights, the number of international passengers at the two giant airports serving the greater Tokyo area would rise to 57 million per year, putting it closer to rival Asian hubs Singapore (62 million), Seoul (66 million) and Hong Kong (72 million). "In terms of attracting foreign companies and improving the convenience of airports, Singapore airport is the model that Japanese airports have to emulate," said aviation analyst Kotaro Toriumi. "That's why they are beefing up international flights at Haneda. Transit passengers from abroad will also be able to easily enjoy tours in Tokyo for a day or half a day, since it takes more time to get to the heart of Tokyo from Narita."

Fast-lane immigration services debut this week at Narita, Kansai airports

The Japan Times

CHIBA – Japan's first fast-lane immigration service will debut this week at major international airports near Tokyo and Osaka to speed up the processing of foreign visitors, it was learned Monday. Narita Airport and Kansai International Airport will start the service on Wednesday to expedite the entry of conference-goers and VIPs, who will be allowed to enter fast lanes by showing a coupon provided in advance by airlines, at the entrance to immigration. Narita Airport gave reporters a preview of the facility Monday ahead of its debut. "We want to enhance the value of Narita Airport by reducing the waiting time," said an official from the airport's parent, Narita International Airport Corp. The fast lanes will be available at both Terminal 1 and Terminal 2, with each flight expected to bring in about five people who can use them.

Narita ponders future after Delta's farewell

The Japan Times

The U.S. airline plans to transfer all U.S.-Tokyo flights to Tokyo International Airport at Haneda in March 2020, when new routes over the city will increase capacity. TIA is locally known as Haneda airport. The move may lead to other airlines reviewing whether to stay at Narita or shift to Haneda, which is closer to central Tokyo, industry sources said. North America routes have been Narita's advantage," a municipal official said of Delta's decision. Delta has used Narita as an Asia hub since the airport opened in 1978, including the period when it was Northwest Airlines.