From the super-efficient bullet train cleaning team that whizzes in and out in a seven-minute turnaround, to stories of entertainingly brilliant station customer service, there are heaps of things to love about Japan’s rail system, which ranks amongst the cleanest and most punctual in the world.

One other cool thing about Japanese trains – or perhaps about Japanese society in general – is that if you lose something, you stand a pretty good chance of getting it back again. Even valuable items like smartphones or wallets often end up handed in to lost property and returned to their original owner.

Today, though, we bring you a collection of some of the more unusual items left on trains around Japan – things that made other commuters go “Huh? Why’d someone have that on the train anyway?”

Join us as we imagine the weary travellers who, in a moment of lapsed concentration, left items like this beaten-up tea kettle on the train:

Or the hasty udon-eater who left behind their sachet of abura-age topping. Maybe there was a kitsune fox on the train!

▼ Either way, we reckon tucking into a bowl of hot udon on the train is definitely pushing the limits of social acceptability.


The most commonly-forgotten item on Japanese trains, incidentally, is the humble umbrella. An incredible 130 million new umbrellas are sold in Japan every year – that’s slightly higher than the country’s total population, meaning on average, each adult buys more than one new umbrella every year.

▼ …and then inexplicably leaves the handle just hanging out on the train like this!
Oh no wait, NOBODY DOES THAT. Except this person.

▼ Then there’s this commuter who always brings their own special piece of brown fabric (complete with window suckers!) with them to sit on…and leaves it behind for the next person.

▼ This person who didn’t want their mother to know they hadn’t eaten up the whole tomato she put in their lunchbox.

▼ Somewhere in Japan, there is a girl in a white bunny suit, tail attached, whiskers drawn on, thinking “Why oh why did I ever take them off?!”


And what about this person who managed to leave a brand new Mini 4WD track on the train! “Even the train guard was like, WOAH”, apparently.

▼ Here’s hoping it wasn’t a belated Christmas present!

▼ Mini 4WD track (non-abandoned version).


This last one has a touch of only-in-Japan to it that we just adore. It’s a bonsai tree!

“No one would go near it!” writes the Twitterer who snapped this shot. Somewhere in Japan, someone is yelling “Oh man, how’d I manage to leave a TREE on the train?!”

▼ Or, alternatively, “Yayy, I got rid of that dying tree I never liked anyway.”

What’s the oddest left-behind item you’ve ever seen on public transport? Have you ever lost something on a train, and did it find its way back to you? Let us know in the comments!

Source: Naver Matome