Trains transformed to “Office Cars” for teleworkers by Japanese Rail Operator

COVID-19 have made working from home a new normal but now one can work from train during commute in Japanese Trains.

To accommodate the growing demand for telework amid the Covid-19 pandemic, Japan’s East Japan Railway Co. (JR East) debuted “office cars” on some Shinkansen bullet trains on routes connecting Tokyo and the country’s northern and central portions on Monday.

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According to the Xinhua news agency, the new service allows passengers to talk on the phone and engage in online meetings from their seats for no additional price – activities that are prohibited on the rest of the train.

On Monday, the media were allowed onboard a running Hokuriku bullet train, and a JR East employee displayed how she works remotely while wearing noise-canceling headphones.

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On weekends and some public holidays, the workspaces will be unavailable to avoid congestion. JR East hopes that the new service would make it easier for people to combine online work with travel, as well as boost demand for business visits, which has dwindled as a result of the pandemic.

Since October, Central Japan Railway Co. and West Japan Railway Co. have been testing the addition of onboard workplaces on trains that go through key cities.

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