Tour bus offers solution to foreign tourists’ gripes

by Kazuaki Nagata

Staff Writer

A free tour of Tokyo by double-decker bus that covers such landmarks as Roppongi Hills, the scramble crossing in Shibuya and the National Diet Building kicks off Wednesday.

Designed for foreign visitors, the tours are in English and the bus, dubbed Visit Shibuya, itself is a roving Wi-Fi hot spot.

The campaign, sponsored by Tokyu Corp., Tokyo FM Broadcasting Co. and Xcom Global Inc., runs through Aug. 31.

“More foreigners are coming to Shibuya these days and their numbers will increase in summer . . . but there are three things that trouble them,” said So Morita, a Tokyu spokesman.

Morita lists them as the difficulty of getting around by public transportation, finding a free Wi-Fi connection and the relative lack of English speakers on the street.

“The idea of this campaign is to provide a solution to all these problems,” Morita said, citing the free Wi-Fi service and English narration.

To download a free ticket, visit www.tokyu.co.jp/visitsbybus/index.html. Japanese are also welcome to take the tour, which begins and ends in Shibuya and takes a little over an hour.