The Japanese are an overworked lot.
This is why you can see them always trying to grab forty winks on the train.
And it’s why you get such a fantastic array of sleeping products.
The spring in Japan brings cherry blossom, Golden Week and clement weather.
It also brings entrance exam hell for high school students looking to get into that tough college. They spend all night studying and all day rushing around strange cities to visit campuses for stressful tests.
All this means there isn’t much time to sleep.
In April, Recruit put together a tongue-in-cheek campaign suggesting ways to help students get more sleep during the exam season.
This includes a funny “history lesson” designed to send you to sleep. They also included genuine advice about making sure you take breaks and get sleep.
But our favorite was this parody “prototype” offering a new way to get some rest on public transport in Japan.
These “napping seats” are not very pleasant for other passengers, perhaps, but you can’t knock their originality.
For example, here’s the hammock train.
Or you can really take up more than your fair share of room by laying out a futon on the floor of the carriage.
All right, so all of this was created in a studio. There are no “napping seats” (or hammocks) on Japanese trains… yet.