In Japan, over a hundred million people jam together jam together in such a narrow land. In public places, it is quite difficult for anyone to keep personal distance especially when using public transportation. Even in this situation, the reason why people don’t get out of temper and quarrel or fight with others in public is because we are bound by a implicit rule.

Japanese people tend to extremely strict to keeping rules and manners. This is because we focus on preventing extremely delicate and explosive situation in quite populated area.

Especially, in too much crowded train which is impossible to keep personal distance, people warn each other with their pent-up discontent and frustration below the surface. You can understand by seeing people’s face. At the moment your shoulder touch other’s, it is about to start conflict.

To avoid this situation, everyone has strict attitude towards rules to avoid futile conflict. In Japan, keeping the common rules is not just to maintain harmony of a society but to protect yourself. So don’t make fun of too detailed rules but you just keep it to maintain peace inside train.

Manners at a platform

Step aside a ticket gate if there is a problem that you can’t go through it

Especially in commuter rush time zone, traffic around ticket gates is quite intense. If you are rejected to go through because of fare shortfall of your IC card or a ticket, you just step aside once to let people who line up behind you through the gate.

Do not become smartphone zombie

I want to believe there is no one who can’t imagine what happens if you walk paying attention to a Smartphone. To make matter worse, Japan is high population density country, you only walk ordinarily, your should may be about to hit someone’s shorter. You understand how danger behavior it is. But I think people who are absorbed into seeing Smartphone while walking are mostly Japanese. If you face a trouble with this kind of behavior from immoral Japanese, I apologize to you here beforehand.

Smoke at a designated place

As times changes, smokers feel out of place. More and more places people can smoke is reducing because smoking has been increasingly coming under intense pressure from a society. Japan is no exception about this stream.

When I go to a station, I can find so many smokers who hang around to look for a place to smoke. That proves how few places people can smoke at stations in Japan.

If you are a smoker, I know how you feel that you are probably annoyed because of not finding smoking place. However, even if you can’t find, don’t do the thing you ignore the public place manners.

Please you just somehow find where you can smoke around a station. Lately, there are some convenience stores that allow smokers to smoke in front of it.

Walk inside the yellow line of platform

There is a yellow line drawn along the edge of a platform. This is consideration for passengers to get on safely. I think your country has the same one commonly.

However, in Japan, a platform becomes so cramped people can hardly find room to put their feet at commuter rush time zone and some of them try to walk along the edge of a platform where there are few people.

I know how they feel that too many people don’t easily allow them to go where they want to go but yellow line is a safe line and if you step beyond this line, there is possibility that a train stops halfway through a platform to prevent an accident. If so, the next coming train needs to stop or slow down temporarily on the way and this induces serious delay.

No matter how hard to walk a platform through the crowd, don’t step beyond yellow line, otherwise, you cause trouble to many people who are in a hurry to reach their destination.

Queue at a platform to get on a train

You can imagine what’s going on if people make a rush all at once for the door to get on a train in the situation that there are as many people as you can hardly find room to put your feet at a platform. Please stand in a queue without complaint.

There are lines or marks on your feet inside a yellow line, that guide you how you can queue. You just follow the marks on your feet and wait till train comes.
Basically, platforms in Japan allow us to make double queues for one door of a train.

Get off first, Get on next

At the moment you want to get off a train, if a crowd of people surge forward in and push you backward, what would you do? You may lose the timing to get off. Get off first, get on next rule is considered to this situation.

To prevent becoming chaos, queueing people make a space to some extent for people to get off. In Japan, the timing people can get on
is after making sure there are no more people to get off.

Do not rush into a train

There was an accident in the past that train departed as jamming rushing person’s arm in the door and a person was dead. Although train door system has been improved, some accident will necessarily occur sooner or later if you get on dangerously.

Of course, if accident occurs, serious delay problems occur, too. No matter how much you rush, don’t rush into a train.

Manners in a train

Move back or squeeze in for someone to sit

In case of long seat, Generally, the number people who can sit on is fixed depending on the length of seat. One person seat space is as wide as your shoulder touches shoulders of both sides of persons sitting next to you when a seat is fully occupied. So unless you are plump enough to need a two person’s space, you just squeeze in and stay small for a person who want to sit.

In case of cross seat, unless all seat spaces are fully occupied, don’t firstly sit aisle seat. For people who want to sit after you, you have to sit a window seat first. If window seats are occupied, you can sit an aisle seat.

Refrain from talking on the phone

If you live in Japan and use train, you may have listened this phrase by train announcement, “refrain from talking on the phone”

In terms of prohibition of talking on the phone in a train, there are arguments both for and against it. At first, malfunction of a medical electronic devices is the reason of prohibition but medical devices performance has been far more developed since this rule took in. So it is difficult to ground this on the reason of prohibition.

After all, it was revealed that this is Japanese people’s habit of feeling uncomfortable when hearing conversation without a person with whom to speak one-sidedly.

As moral responsibility, a train company can’t ignore a certain amount of complaints about talking on the phone from passengers apart from weather complaints are reasonable.

So there are some people who think this rule is very strange but my conclusion is like you don’t need to do on purpose what people hate.
Considering and refraining from doing something that creates a conflict is also a manner.

Care about sound leakage

Japanese people are really sensitive about sound. No matter how small the sound is, they don’t really like what tranquility is disturbed by an unexpected sound.

There is no complaint about how you spend time in a train but if you enjoy your music with your head phone, please care about sound leakage.

Give up seats

I am really sad that Japanese who proactively give up a seat for a needed person has reduced these days.

Putting yourself in the position of weak people and thinking what you can do for them is very important viewpoint as not only train manner.

You don’t need to discriminate between priority seat and general seat. The way of thinking like giving up a seat because it is a priority seat and not giving up seat because it is a general seat is really intolerant.

Whatever type of seat you sit, if there is someone who need it, you just give up. This is moral. At least, If you find old person, a pregnant woman, injured person, woman with small kids, you give up a seat for them.

Don’t eat food

Sharing public space includes sharing sound, sharing smell. Sometimes food smell which is incongruous to space make people feel uncomfortable no matter how tasty it looks like.

Smell which float around a space and reach forcibly your nose is extremely uncomfortable. There is no strict rules set in every single train in Japan about eating food but please keep it mind that train is not a place to eat.

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