Nihombashi, Toyosu Now Linked by Evening Commuter Ferry, Offering Escape from Packed Trains

The Yomiuri Shimbun
The Urban Launch ferry is seen in Koto Ward, Tokyo, on Tuesday.

A regular commuter ferry is set to start shuttling between Nihombashi in Tokyo’s Chuo Ward and Toyosu in Koto Ward from Wednesday. The boat passes through Tokyo Bay and the Sumida River, and allows commuters to skip crowded trains for a more relaxing river cruise.

The service uses the Urban Launch, a small 41-passenger boat, and will make five round trips every Tuesday through Thursday from late afternoon into the evening.

Tokyo Cruise Ship Co. and Mitsui Fudosan Co. run the service. Operating costs are subsidized by the Tokyo metropolitan government.

The ship will make its first trip each day around when many office workers leave for home. The companies will also consider offering more trips and morning commute services.

Reservations can be made through the Suitown Tokyo website. If seats are available, passengers may board without a reservation.

“Boats allow you to get around while enjoying the scenery and night breeze,” said an official for the metropolitan government. “We hope people will take a ride and see the advantages for themselves.”