Traveling to another country is hard, and all too often it leaves a respectable citizen looking like a touristy fool. We don't judge. There are plenty of cultural faux pas that slip our minds when trying to navigate an unexplained terrain in a foreign language.
Thankfully, the Metro Cultural Foundation of Japan has created a delightful compendium of dos and don'ts for riding Tokyo's subway. The Foundation presents 12 posters, one for each month of the year, detailing tourists' most common metro-centric grievances, presented in a language we can all understand -- colorful pictures!
1. Listen to loud music that bleeds out of your headphones. #Annoying.
Notable indiscretions include munching on the train, blasting music in crowded spaces, and, of course, dozing off on the shoulder of a fellow passenger. With candy-colored graphics adorned with more than their fair share of hearts and squiggles, these public service announcements feel more like visual treats than stern warnings. Who knew a series of Japanese etiquette guides could incite so many smiles?
2. Fall asleep on someone's shoulder. Some people just need personal space.
3. Fail to offer a pregnant woman a seat. For shame!
4. Fling about your oversized bags. It's not a game of pinball, guys.
5. Eat aggressively near a fellow commuter. Sigh. Those crumbs.
6. Leave the sound on while playing games on your cell phone. Feel your blood boiling yet?
7. Haphazardly pull your wheeled bag along the platform. Sorry, grandma!
8. Block the doors while a subway is attempting to leave a station. Come on!
Go ahead, air your subway-related complaints in the comments.