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Luxury intercity coach service provides relaxing alternative to the Bullet Train

While the Shinkansen has long grabbed the media’s attention for its spectacular service, bus companies such as Willer have provided a cheaper and, yes, slower option for passengers and many of these services run overnight, so saving on accommodation. (Supplied)
While the Shinkansen has long grabbed the media’s attention for its spectacular service, bus companies such as Willer have provided a cheaper and, yes, slower option for passengers and many of these services run overnight, so saving on accommodation. (Supplied)
While the Shinkansen has long grabbed the media’s attention for its spectacular service, bus companies such as Willer have provided a cheaper and, yes, slower option for passengers and many of these services run overnight, so saving on accommodation. (Supplied)
While the Shinkansen has long grabbed the media’s attention for its spectacular service, bus companies such as Willer have provided a cheaper and, yes, slower option for passengers and many of these services run overnight, so saving on accommodation. (Supplied)
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16 Oct 2021 01:10:58 GMT9
16 Oct 2021 01:10:58 GMT9

Arab News Japan

TOKYO: Japan’s ‘Bullet Train’ is famous throughout the world for its efficiency and speed, but Japan’s highway bus services have long provided an alternative to rattling through the countryside at 300 kph and the king of the long-distance bus service is Willer.

While the Shinkansen – the actual name for the Bullet Train – has long grabbed the media’s attention for its spectacular service, bus companies such as Willer have provided a cheaper and, yes, slower option for passengers and many of these services run overnight, so saving on accommodation.

Willer’s ReBorn seat is the ultimate in highway luxury.

It was developed to re-envisage the image of cramped highway buses with a particular appeal to women. It resembles a business class seat on an airplane with only three seats across, not the traditional four found on buses. While Willer still has buses with four seats across, they are fitted with a canopy that separates the passenger from the person in the adjoining seat.

A Willer spokesperson said: “There was always an image of tiredness on express buses but we have reimagined them to be places of relaxation and rest. In addition to young women, we also want to provide comfort for businesspeople and older people who are happy to be transported at a more relaxed pace.”

The company says its ReBorn seats have been designed to provide “the best environment for sleeping,” which includes optimum levels of light, sound, temperature and humidity. The seats also have a remarkable tilt angle of 156 degrees, as well as built-in foot and leg rests. The seats are around 60 cm wide and there is spacing of 158 cm between them.

As a countermeasure against the coronavirus, the seats are equipped with “Aeropure,” a deodorant device with ultraviolet LED, which has been confirmed to have the effect of inactivating the new coronavirus.

The most popular routes are between the major cities of Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya, as well as the northern city of Niigata, a popular tourist destination.

But the main attraction is the cost. Tokyo to Osaka in one of the luxurious ReBorn seats is just 6,900 yen, half the price of the Bullet Train.

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