System is quick and easy to use, requires no payment or registration.

Much to the delight of travelers, Japan’s public bathrooms are clean and equipped with high-tech toilets. Unfortunately, they’re not always the most spacious, which can present a problem if you’ve got large pieces of luggage with you.

Sure, if all you’ve got is a backpack, you’ll have no difficulties using a stall or urinal. But if you’re wheeling a big suitcase with you, it can be a challenge to navigate a crowded restroom and wedge it into what little personal space you have while you do your business. But at Shinjuku Station, Tokyo’s, and also Japan’s, busiest rail hub, there’s a clever new solution to the problem.

Rail operator Odakyu recently renovated the restrooms just inside its Shinjuku west exit underground turnstiles, and along with new flooring and fixtures it’s added Baggageport temporary luggage storage terminals.

The terminals work in conjunction with any IC card on the FeliCa or MIFARE system, which includes Suica, the most commonly used pre-paid rail card in Japan, as well as a number of overseas-use IC cards. To use the terminal, you simply wrap the cord around your bag’s handle to secure it, replace the end of the cord in the terminal, press the button, and tap the receptor with your IC card to lock the cord.

Once you’re finished using the bathroom, press the terminal button, tap the terminal with your card again, unhook the cord, and you’re on your way.

▼ Odakyu also has illustrated bilingual Japanese/English posters explaining how to use the terminals.

Since IC cards can also be used as pre-paid debit cards, you might be wondering how much Odakyu is going to charge you to use Baggageport. The answer is not a single yen, as it’s completely free to use. After all, when nature is calling and you’re striding to the bathroom, no one wants to take the time to try to remember how much money they’ve got saved on their card.

Source: IT Media
Featured image: Twitter/@ryuji_chaos

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