The old cool pastime is an outdated one- everywhere but Japan?
As an ex-smoker, I do struggle with my old daemon- tobacco. I have parted ways, no longer stay in contact and yet it still bugs me.
My fight had been made easier with most train stations on the Kintetsu lines and the Iga-tetsudo lines now being smoke free but there is but one place that does still haunt me- convenience stores.
In Japan, tobacco is sold out in the open- with even special offers and prices at times- showing you just how cheap it is- the cheapest one being just 350 JPY ( around 3 USD)- which never mind being cheap for Japan, it is cheap full stop. Even with the UN tobacco recommendations, Japan still mostly ignores them.
There are smoking areas inside restaurants (separated from non-smoking areas), smoking areas in train cars, in the street, outside convenience stores, outside clinics and hospitals and inside so many businesses- it hard to escape them and it is still socially acceptable but nor as much as drinking (to be looked into later).
However, there have been more laws brought in especially in Tokyo in the run up to the Olympics next year to become more anti-smoking, but this seems to be confined to places a tourist may see.
So, for those who are anti-smoking or have given up, be vigilant- Japan seems like a smoker’s paradise and is still tempting for those who have quit. For smokers, please respect Japan and be aware of other’s opinions.
Thank you for reading and happy exploring
Smoking in Japan
I do not condone smoking, but if you visit and would like to smoke please note the following:
- You may only smoke in designated areas or face a fine
- Not all convenience stores have smoking ash trays
- Some major cities- Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka, Nagoya etc have districts where smoking is prohibited. If you want to smoke, you need to either exit the district or find an indoor one.
- There are smoking rooms on limited express trains and on the Shinkansen- all other trains are non-smoking.
- A pocket ashtray is not a free licence to smoke
- most tourist places including moutains are completely smoke free