Japan sees heavy New Year holiday traffic after COVID-19 downgrade
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Travelers flooded airports and major train stations in Japan on Friday to head to their hometowns in the first New Year holiday season since the government downgraded the legal status of COVID-19 to the same category as seasonal flu.
To ease overcrowding, Central Japan Railway Co. and West Japan Railway Co. have made many of their shinkansen bullet train seats reservation-only during the year-end and the New Year period for the first time.
At the bustling Tokyo Station, announcements warned travelers of the need to reserve their seats for the fastest-traveling shinkansen, the Nozomi.
“It is co...