Allows commuters to skip supermarket detour and stay on the straight track to dinner.

With most people in Japan relying on public transportation to get around, between a Monday-to-Friday commute and weekend leisure outings it’s not unusual to pass through a train station almost every day. So if you’re going to be at the station anyway, why not get your grocery shopping done while you’re there?

That’s the idea behind a new partnership between online grocery seller Cookpad Mart and East Japan Railway Company (a.k.a. JR East). Ordinarily, Cookpad Mart customers pick up their orders from Cookpad lockers (you’ll sometimes see them inside convenience stores, for example), but the new service allows you to grab your groceries at the gate of JR East stations.

It works pretty much like the standard Cookpad Mart purchasing process: You log in, select your groceries, and then, for your pickup point, pick a station. Then once you’re at the ticket gate you show the confirmation screen on your phone to the station attendant, and you get your order. Pickup is available until 10 p.m., and with some Japanese supermarkets closing before then, the service is especially handy for those working late shifts who can’t make it to their local grocer after they get off work.

▼ This woman now has salmon, spinach, and tomatoes, all without having to make any detours on her way home.

There’s no additional fee for station pick-up, although you do need to have either a commuter pass or a ticket for that day that goes through the station. Since the appeal of the service is being able to grab your groceries at the station you were going to be at anyway, though, the ticket requirement doesn’t seem like such a big drawback.

The program is currently in its trial period, with grocery pickup offered at Fuchu Honmachi and Inaginaganuma Stations in Tokyo, and Isogo and Kozukue in Kanagawa Prefecture, with service scheduled to expand to Yokohama and Kawasaki Stations in the near future.

Source: PR Times via IT Media
Images: PR Times
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