As the host for the 2020 Summer Olympics, Tokyo is gearing up for an exciting year. The Japanese capital is putting the finishing touches on its plans for the Olympics while it prepares for millions of guests. Unlike some of the former Olympic hosts, Tokyo is already used to having massive amounts of visitors, with over 10 million foreign visitors a year.
However, these numbers will spike to even more astounding numbers for the Olympics, with projections of 40 million visitors arriving during the summer. As Governor Yuriko Koike explains, the city plans on using this opportunity to showcase the many wonders Tokyo has to offer. The Shibuya Station neighborhood, one of Tokyo’s busiest downtown centers, is being entirely revamped. The Meiji Jingu Museum is being opened to showcase Japanese cultural artifacts, and a lot of new restaurants and other entertainment areas are opening.
The Olympic events will take place around 43 venues in the country, and Tokyo is currently finishing up the New National Stadium. This stadium will be the centerpiece for the Olympics, hosting the opening ceremony and other main events. Over 80,000 volunteer tour guides, including many English speakers, will help visitors catch up on the events at Olympic broadcasts situated in public locations. To assist visitors and highlight their technological advancements, humanoid robots will be available to offer directions for visitors.
Other improvements include expanding free wifi stations throughout the country and opening many new hotels. By summer of 2020, the city plans to have 30,000 additional hotel rooms available. These range from budget capsule hotels that offer nothing but a bed to sleep on to luxury hotels filled with all sorts of restaurants and amenities. However, Tokyo cautions that their regulations do not allow for many AirBnb and other room rental services, so visitors should book far in advance.
To cope with the increased traffic, Tokyo’s major train line, the JR Yamanote train line, is opening up its first new train station in almost 50 years. This station will have an origami inspired glass roof that will certainly catch plenty of attention in its position right behind the New National Stadium. Tokyo will also be offering incentives for companies who let their employees work from home, which will hopefully ease commuting traffic.