Most people living in Japan rely on public transport for transportation between Monday to Friday commutes and leisure trips on weekends; it’s not uncommon to walk through train stations almost every day. If you’re likely to be at the station, why not ensure you get your groceries accomplished during your visit?
That’s the premise of a new collaboration between online grocery retailer Cookpad Mart and East Japan Railway Company (a.k.a. JR East). Typically, Cookpad Mart customers pick their purchases at Cookpad lockers (you’ll often find them in convenience stores, for instance). However, this new service lets customers pick up their groceries from the gate at JR East stations. This allows commuters to avoid grocery store detours and remain on the straight path to dinner.
It’s similar to the traditional Cookpad Mart purchasing process: login, choose your items, choose your pickup location, and choose one station. When you arrive at the gate, you present the confirmation screen on your smartphone to the attendant at the station, and your order is delivered. Pickup is offered till 10 p.m. And certain Japanese stores are closing earlier; it is helpful for people working late shifts and aren’t able to get to their local grocery store after getting off from work.
There’s no extra cost to pick up your station items; however, you’ll need either the commuter pass or the ticket that passes to the train station. Because the main benefit of this service is the ability to get your groceries from the station you’re likely to be at in the first place, the requirement to purchase a ticket doesn’t appear to be an issue at all.
It is in the test phase, with groceries pickup available on Fuchu Honmachi and Inaginaganuma Stations in Tokyo and Isogo and Kozukue within the Kanagawa Prefecture, with service planned to be expanded into Yokohama as well as Kawasaki Stations shortly.
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