I, A Brit, Went To Tokyo, And Here Are 17 Things I Noticed That Are Pretty Effing Different From The UK


Yes, that is a rabbit on a lead.

Hi, I’m Sam, and I’m a Brit living in London. I love to travel, and I’ve ALWAYS wanted to go to Japan!

I’ve cast my mind back to my pre-Covid trip, and put together a list of casual observations about Japan/Tokyo that I thought were worth mentioning.

1. There are these lorries that drive around loudly playing music, presumably for promotional purposes.

Sam Cleal / Via Buzzfeed

Check out this singing mouse who’s gotten so hammered that he’s passed out and lost his wig – what an icon!

2. There are certain restaurants where you can order via a vending machine!

Jemma Mills / Via Buzzfeed

The faster way to dine for any misanthrope.

3. You can buy sandwiches with the crusts already cut off!

Sam Cleal / Via Buzzfeed

Tbh, I was not mad at these.

4. You often get a little basket in a restaurant to store your belongings in while you sit and eat.

Love this idea- in Japan all restaurants/coffee shops supply you with a basket when seated to put your handbag or shopping in safely and tidily.

04:56 AM – 07 Mar 2018

Jenn

If you didn’t already know, Japan likes to keep things ~neat~.

5. The traffic cones we saw were wayyy more exciting than ours.

Sam Cleal / Via Buzzfeed, u/kinokokoro / Via reddit.com

Some light up, and some are even painted with faces and designs, like these Fuji-inspired cones at Kawaguchi station.

6. Some places have special slippers to wear in the toilet for hygiene reasons. I’m told people also do the same at home!

7. People don’t just take their dogs for a walk!

Sam Cleal / Via Buzzfeed

It’s actually called a “hop” when it’s a rabbit.

8. Most stores in Tokyo will clip your shopping bag together with tape as a proof-of-purchase.

Sam Cleal / Via Buzzfeed

No ma’am, you cannot wear this out of the store.

9. People cycle on the pavement as well as the road.

Sam Cleal / Via Buzzfeed

My anxiety was at 110% for most of the trip.

10. Convenience stores have a truly wild range of drinks, including this fluorescent green melon soda, which I became addicted to.

Sam Cleal / Via Buzzfeed, Georgeclerk / Via Getty Images

Other delectable beverages I enjoyed include cold milk tea, matcha latte, plum wine, and ALL OF THE CHU-HI – a flavoured highball cocktail made with a Japanese liquor called shōchū.

11. The whole country is obsessed with cute things e.g. kittens, puppies, rabbits, mice.

Sam Cleal / Via Buzzfeed

I mean, I guess we already knew that, but I cannot stress enough how many adverts, products, and services are plastered with ~kawaii~ characters!

12. Train seats can be rotated in the direction of travel for your pleasure.

Bruno Stévant / Via youtube.com

Say sayōnara to travel sickness!

13. There are these flat wooden flip-flops called “geta” (similar to clogs), which Japanese people sometimes wear.

14. You can’t smoke just anywhere – there are these designated cages on the street for smokers.

15. 95% of the toilets are ~super~ fancy, with lots of buttons to enhance your toilet-going experience!

Sam Cleal / Via Buzzfeed

Options include seat-heating, bidet, karaoke, and ejector seat.

16. There are these “maid cafes” where young women dress up in maid outfits and serve you food and drink.

17. And finally, when a train pulls into a tube station, an adorable little jingle plays over the tannoy.

Bee32 / Via Getty Images

Depending on what line you’re on, the jingle changes!

18. Bonus: I HAD to include this point about masks, which I wrote back in 2019… And of course, everyone wears face masks for reasons as diverse as wanting to avoid air pollution, allergens, or germs, or even wanting to cover up a spot or blemish!

Sam Cleal / Via Buzzfeed

#TBT when masks were a huge novelty!

Anyway, hope to see you again soon, Japan!!! 🇯🇵♥️🇯🇵♥️🇯🇵

Toho / Via Giphy

Have you ever been to Tokyo or Japan and noticed anything unusual or amazing? Let us know in the comments below!