Japanese businesses to offer benefits using vaccination app

Oct 07 , 2021. 19 hours ago – 15:00 KYODO NEWS

Photo taken Oct. 6, 2021, in Tokyo, shows a presentation for a new smartphone app that shows proof of COVID-19 vaccination. (Kyodo)

TOKYO – Japanese companies will collaborate to offer special benefits to customers who utilize a new smartphone app showing proof of COVID-19 vaccination when using restaurants and hotels, the app providers said Wednesday.

Some 10 companies have joined the initiative, which aims to attract customers by promoting their measures to prevent coronavirus infections while encouraging people to get vaccinated.

The smartphone app will display proof of vaccination with the user’s face on the screen once they register the necessary information after being fully inoculated against COVID-19, according to app providers Medical Check Propulsion Mechanism and Tokyo-based medical venture ICheck Co.

The app called “Wakupasu” can be downloaded to smartphones free of charge and is expected to be launched following approval by Apple Inc. and others, they said.

Among companies joining the program are travel agency H.I.S. Co., the APA Group which runs a hotel chain, sushi restaurant chain Kappa Create Co. and J-League soccer team Kashima Antlers.

The companies are currently preparing special benefits for customers, with Kappa Create planning to offer a 10 percent discount on food and drink charges.

Fumiaki Koizumi, president of Kashima, said in an online presentation, “I felt a little cheerful that the number of new infections has decreased, but I also have a sense of crisis” about managing businesses, expressing the team’s willingness to utilize the vaccination app. Koizumi is also chairman of flea market app operator Mercari Inc.

Those who have not been vaccinated or who do not present the app will be able to receive the same services as before.

Cr. KYODO NEWS