a crowd of people crossing a street

Free noodles for impressing your bosses…

Tokyo accomplishes what few cities with over 9 million people can: a resemblance of order, despite 7 million daily commuters. In fact, apologies are issued for late running trains and it’s not at all uncommon for Japanese sports fans to help clean stadiums after a hotly contested match.

Of all the busiest daily city commutes, the Tozai line serving buzzing Otemachi and Nishombashi, which brings commuters from popular Eastern suburbs to central takes the cake. The subway line serves a staggering 1.65 million Tokyo commuters per day and staggering is exactly what Tokyo Metro authorities would like to do with its passengers. Authorities are offering free noodles to those who beat the rush hour rush, and maybe even some tempura too…

a city with many colorful signsTempura, soba or both? Getting up early for work is particularly hard in the dark, dreary months of winter, but Japanese authorities have found just the way to incentivize for an early rise.

From January 21st, 2019 to February 2nd, 2019, early commuters will be rewarded with free noodles, free tempura or if enough people get in on the action – both. The Tozai line is looking to ease rush hour congestion, and if 2,000 commuters travel early each they’ll be rewarded with tempura.

If 2,500 per day  go for it, they’ll be upgraded to soba noodles and if 3,000 use their alarms, it’s tempura and soba! Partaaaaay time on the way to work, indeed! These goals must be met every day for the next two weeks for the free soba, tempura dream to come to fruition. What’s next, a free “Asahi” for leaving the office a bit early?

a crowd of people crossing a streetWell, maybe actually. According to Tokyo AFP, over 1,000 local businesses have jumped on board this initiative to ease commuter problems by agreeing to let staff leave early, arrive late or work from home. Imagine that anywhere else on earth? Yeah, not quite.

For anyone wondering, this is one of the many reasons Tokyo is one of the three best cities on earth. 2019 could be an incredible year to visit as facilities take shape in the lead up to the 2020 Olympics. If you wake up early enough from your jet lag, you may be able to save on food costs too. Just take the Tozai line.

Gilbert Ott

Gilbert Ott is an ever curious traveler and one of the world's leading travel experts. His adventures take him all over the globe, often spanning over 200,000 miles a year and his travel exploits are regularly...

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