MVA’s new Japan campaign: Marianacation

Marketing message in Japan focusing on clean and safe Marianas

The Marianas Visitors Authority’s marketing message in Japan continues to be a clean and safe Marianas, and a new campaign called “Marianacation.”

MVA managing director Priscilla M. Iakopo told members of the House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee during a budget hearing for MVA last week that they will continue to maximize social media channels in promoting the CNMI in Japan.

At this early stage, she said, they are targeting repeat visitors and what’s called in the tourism industry as Free Independent Travelers, or the FIT market. FIT travelers make their own arrangements and do not buy travel packages.


Iakopo said they are working closely with travel agencies to develop packages for the family market.

She said the travel advisory to the United States, including the Marianas, was lowered last May 26 to Level One, meaning “Exercise caution.”

Also, beginning June 1, 2022, the Japanese government no longer requires testing or quarantine upon arrival in Japan from the U.S. regardless of their vaccination status.

“However, all travelers are still required to have a vaccination certificate and a negative COVID-19 test to leave Japan as well as a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of departure to return back to Japan,” she said.

With those requirements and continuing concerns about infections, the current travelling oversea tends to be repeaters and FITs, Iakopo said.

She cited that of about 7,000 Japanese arrivals in Hawaii in April 2022, 86% of that were repeaters and 95% did not book packages.

As for China, which was the CNMI’s second largest source market before COVID-19, Iakopo said outbound travel from that country is still being heavily restricted by their government.

She said that, until there are indications that those restrictions will be lifted, they are in a “holding pattern on China.”

Ferdie De La Torre | Reporter
Ferdie Ponce de la Torre is a senior reporter of Saipan Tribune. He has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and has covered all news beats in the CNMI. He is a recipient of the CNMI Supreme Court Justice Award. Contact him at

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