Every society has its cultural niceties, its polite communal behaviors and its social faux pas. In Japan, since public transportation is so prevalent, the rules about how to ride the trains are fairly ingrained into each person.
One of these unwritten rules loftily floats above all others though, and it’s that you give up your seat for someone who needs it more. Many people are happy to do so, but there are times you wish you could be seated as well. In those situations, there is nothing you can do but suck it up through the rest of the train ride, that is, unless you are riding on a train in Italy.
This short comic illustrates what had happened when a couple of students were faced with giving up their seat on the train, and, spoiler alert, everyone got to sit down!
When traveling by train in Japan, there are certain people you are expected to give up your seat for. These could be the elderly, expecting mothers, mothers with children, and injured or handicapped people. The polite thing to do when you see one of the above members of society is to stand up and graciously guide them to where you were previously sitting. It doesn’t matter if you were sitting beside your friend or a family member, that is the common courtesy.
A Japanese tourist was visiting Italy and saw the interesting way which a pair of Italian students gave up a seat, thinking how it was a win-win situation for everyone. The tourist loved the scene so much that they drew a cute comic to accompany their explanation.
▼Step 1: You and your friend occupy two seats
▼Step 2: One of you notices someone who should have a seat
▼Step 3: Mention it to your friend, your friend notices as well
▼Step 4: One of you goes to call out to the person standing, the other slides over to make some room
▼Step 5: Have one of you sit on the other’s lap, continue acting like you are having the time of your lives
▼Step 6: Revel in the good deed you have done for the day, and the confusion you have caused the book-reading passenger who was sitting beside you before
Instead of one of the students having to stand, one ended up sitting on the other’s lap! Everybody sits and everybody is happy! It would be an incredible sight to see if such a thing happened in Japan.
When faced with giving up your seat, would you consider sitting on or sharing a seat with your friend or significant other? Or is that just going to cause more discomfort on a Japanese train? Someone try it out on the Yamanote Line and let us know how it went in the comments section.[tweet https://twitter.com/Yotsura/status/578148923224690689 align=center]