The government has started a survey on wheelchair accessibility of hotels and inns across the country ahead of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics, as progress toward making such facilities friendly to visitors with disabilities remains slow, officials said.
The government drew up a set of proposals earlier in the year to make public places more barrier-free ahead of the 2020 events, but the International Paralympic Committee said in May improvements are needed to make hotels more accessible for Paralympic participants and officials.
A nationwide survey will be conducted through hotel industry organizations to see how many rooms offer sufficient accessibility for people with disabilities at 19,000 hotels and inns.
A lodging facility with 50 or more guest rooms in Japan is only required by law to have one room designed to accommodate people using wheelchairs.
One industry group official said renovation costs stand in the way of progress to improve existing facilities' accessibility.
Japan also faces a pressing need to address expected accommodation shortages during the Olympics and Paralympics. While the government is promoting home lodgings, an idea has been floated to use cruise ships as accommodation facilities.