Shinkansen, express train users drop 95 percent during Golden Week holidays
Japan Today -- May 08
The number of passengers on shinkansen and limited express trains during this year's Golden Week holidays plunged 95 percent from a year earlier amid the coronavirus outbreak, data from six major railway companies showed Thursday.

The decline was the sharpest for the holiday period since the six train operators -- East Japan Railway Co, West Japan Railway Co, Central Japan Railway Co, Hokkaido Railway Co, Shikoku Railway Co and Kyushu Railway Co -- were created through the privatization of the former state-owned railway company in 1987.

The outlook for passenger numbers on the trains looks grim after the government decided Monday to extend the nationwide state of emergency until the end of May, from its previously scheduled expiration on Wednesday, to reduce infection rates.

The operators of the Tokaido, Sanyo, and Kyushu shinkansen lines, which connect popular tourist destinations such as Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka and Fukuoka, will cut services by 20 to 30 percent starting Monday. The three lines saw passenger numbers decline 93 to 95 percent during the roughly weeklong holiday period.

A total of 916,000 passengers took shinkansen and major limited express trains from April 24 to May 6, sharply down from 17.12 million in the same period last year amid stay-at-home and business closure requests under the state of emergency. Last year the holiday was extended to 10 days to celebrate the imperial succession.

ゴールデンウィーク期間中に新幹線などを利用した人が過去最低となりました。  JR各社によりますと、先月24日から今月6日までの間に全国で新幹線や特急などを利用した人は約91万6000人で、前の年の同じ時期に比べて約95%減りました。利用した人数としては1990年以降で過去最低だということです。また、JR東海、西日本、九州の3社は11日以降、東海道、山陽、九州の各新幹線を通常の7割程度に減らして運行すると発表しました。東海道、山陽新幹線はすでに通常の8割程度のダイヤで運行しています。
News sources: Japan Today, ANNnewsCH
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