One of the operators of the world’s first high-speed train, East Japan Railway Company (JR East), believes that the U.S. market is ripe for so-called bullet trains, which will introduce a new mode of travel for commuters and tourists.
“There are opportunities here in the market. In Japan, we have special tourism trains for scenic routes, like cruise trains. We’re going to promote that next year,” said Executive Director Hiroaki Kurahashi.
JR East has played a huge role in promoting tourism in Japan by facilitating easier and faster travel. Supported by its global reputation for efficiency and innovation, the company hopes cities across the United States adopt high-speed rail in the near future.
JR East, which was spun off from the original operator of the country’s entire high-speed rail network in 1987 and privatized in 2002, runs five routes from Tokyo to five other cities in eastern Japan. Maintaining more than 7,200 kms of tracks, the company carried an average of 17 million passengers a day last year.
“There are many inbound tourists coming from Asia, which is the major market for us. So, the United States can also be a major influence for this,” Kurahashi also said.
Based in Tokyo with offices in New York, Paris, Brussels, London and Singapore, JR East is also involved in real estate, freight services, advertising, hotel, telecommunications, operations and construction.