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Business Class – Shinkansen Style

By Owen C. Hardy

JR ad for the new Shinkansen 'Hayabusa' trains running on the high-speed Tokyo-Aomori route.

Japan’s new class of “Hayabusa” trains on the high-speed Tohoku shinkansen route between Tokyo and Aomori feature, according to the Wall Street Journal’s JapanRealTime, a luxury 18-seat ” GranClass” car.

Says the WSJ: they are “reminiscent of business-class air travel, with plush leather seats that recline by up to 45 degrees, as well as…a dedicated cabin attendant.

“On board you can sample edible regional delicacies or take advantage of the offer of free drinks, which a spokesman at JR East confirmed will include alcohol.  ‘Refills are allowed,’ he said.”

Not the Eastern & Oriental Express, but a welcome addition to upscale, high-speed rail travel.