Mar 15, 2019

The flipside of the Tokyo Commuter Quandary

I read Tomuu's post about the Tokyo commuter quandary yesterday, and it took me back to when I lived in Tokyo and would often arrive early or stay back late from work or appointments to avoid peak hour crowds on trains, too. I am a person that absolutely values personal space, and the idea of being crammed up against complete strangers with nowhere to move is less than appealing.

The commuter quandary happens in a different way out here in the countryside though - it's more a case of having to arrive early because out here in the sticks we get one local train an hour! If you need to be somewhere and the most logical train is going to be cutting it fine, then you end up catching the earlier one - which leaves you arriving way in advance of any scheduled meetings or appointments.

The flipside of the Tokyo Commuter Quandary photo

Countryside life still has commuter quandaries - even if they are slightly more bearable than the Tokyo morning and evening rush!

I guess I shouldn't complain, though - even these tiny two carriage once an hour Joetsu line trains are never full. In peak hours, those local trains size up to a whopping four carriages in length, so that you can still snag a seat!



After spending the last several years in the beating heart of Tokyo, I will be spending the next three in the countryside of Japan. I adore this country and all it has to offer - and I'm always learning more and more about life here as I go along!


  • Terrilyn

    on Mar 15

    Looking at the photo while listening to birds chirping outside my window... so relaxing.

  • Tomuu

    on Mar 15

    Ahh! It's a different world. It's odd, but as much as I complain about my commute, the idea of going to just one train an hour could leave me pacing up and down the platform getting impatient. You can't win!