Tourism is expected to be an important pillar for Japan's future economic growth and regional revitalisation. In response, Japanese universities have increased the development of tourism programmes over the past 20 years. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has severely impacted the country's tourism industry. This short communication examined data on the entrance examinations for undergraduate tourism programmes at 12 Japanese universities from the last three academic years to provide up-to-date trends in this field. The available data showed that the overall number of applications for entrance examinations decreased in the 2020 academic year, and an even more notable decrease was evident in 2021. Although this paper provides an international audience with a timely overview, it acknowledges the necessity of continuous monitoring and a more in-depth analysis of each institution for a comprehensive understanding of the impact of pandemic.