Hato Bus employees celebrate start of new journey

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Hato Bus Co. employees attend a Coming-of-Age Day ceremony arranged by the company in Tokyo on Friday.

Ten employees at Hato Bus Co. participated in a Coming-of-Age Day ceremony in Tokyo on Friday, the first arranged by the company since 2019 amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.

The Ota Ward-based sightseeing bus operator began organizing a Coming-of-Age Day ceremony in 1962 for its employees who were unable to celebrate the day in their hometowns.

A few days ahead of the national holiday on Monday, nine guides and one mechanic attended the ceremony. Clad in colorful kimono, they posed for a group photo in front of a tour bus before visiting Meiji Jingu shrine in Shibuya Ward.

The company has seen a sharp decline in customers, with some of its employees currently on loan to other entities.

“I’m grateful that our company held the ceremony amid such difficult times,” said one participant from Inawashiro, Fukushima Prefecture.