Public Transportation In Japan


Back home, I grew so used to driving a car everywhere I go. Yes, buses and trains exist there, but they were basically seen as a joke of transportation due to how inefficient they are. The vast majority, including myself, use cars. So, imagine going from that to having no car and having to figure out how to get around the largest city in the world. The idea was a bit scary to me going in but I had to use a new means of transportation: public transportation.

In the city of Tokyo, it is common for residents to use public transportation. There are cars, lots of them in fact, but it seems like the majority of people here rely on public transportation. This is probably because of the efficiency of the public transportation system. From what I have seen, Tokyo structures itself around the train stations. Most of the points of interest for people are within walking distance of the train. Also, train arrival times are minutes apart from each other. So, it is more convenient to use public transportation. Many people don’t want to go through the hassle of driving in Tokyo traffic and incurring heavy expenses for being a car owner. Back home, no such system exists. Buses take over half an hour to arrive and the routes do not really pass through many places people need to go. So, it’s interesting to see a different way of getting around.

I will say though that I was in some stressful situations regarding the trains. The first time I took the train by myself, I was heading to Shibuya to meet a friend. I took the right train, or so I thought. The train was heading towards Shibuya so I thought I was fine. But then, it went backward. Once I noticed, I quickly got off the next station and searched for another train. Luckily, Tokyo’s train system goes off of distance. It determines this by looking at the station you entered and the station you exited. So, I didn’t get an extra charge for this. Another time, I was in Ikebukuro station trying to get to another train. What I didn’t realize, however, was that the train was at another gate. Unfortunately, I was charged for it and my card got locked. Lesson learned I guess.