In Tokyo, early commuters catch a free bowl of soda noodles.
Japan’s capital offers free food to early commuters who avoid rush hour on trains. Japan’s commute in mornings consists of crowded stations and trains packed like sardines.
To ease metro train congestion specifically on peak periods during weekdays, the Tokyo Metro company offered free soba noodles and tempura from January 21 to February last year.
These will be for commuters riding the Tozai Line anywhere between Toyo-Katsutadai in Chiba Prefecture and Monzennakacho in the city before rush hour (7:50-8:50 a.m.), the report said.
Depending on the availability of offered food, participants may enjoy kaiage tempura for 2,000 people who commute early; kake soba for 2,500 participants; and kakiage soba if 3,000 people join the campaign.
The plan became successful. On Twitter, the Tokyo Metro announced nearly 7,000 people participated in the early-East Tozai line campaign.
Trains in the Tozai line operate 199% during rush hour, Tokyo Metro reports. The subway campaign coincided with another local campaign of encouraging flexible working time.
Employees working in the local businesses in the city can work from home or come to work either earlier or later than usual, commuting during off hours.
These efforts are also part of the upcoming Tokyo Olympics addressing commuter congestion around the city.