- July 21, 2020 at 11:59 pm #9164
Hello! I’ve noticed on YouTube that some residents of Japan have a red tag for their purse or backpack that shows others they have an invisible illness, so they can get a seat on a train or bus. It’s a red tag with the medical white plus sign and is maybe able the size of a credit card.
Does anyone know how to go about getting one, either once you’re in Japan or online ahead of time (which would be even better)?
- July 22, 2020 at 9:57 am #9171
They are called “Help Mark” (ヘルプマーク, herupu-maaku) and the easiest place to get them is at the office of a Toei subway station (note that Toei subway lines are the government transportation lines and are different than Tokyo Metro which is a private company). However, they are not available at the following stations: Oshiage, Meguro, Shiraganedai, Shiragane Takanawa, or Shinjuku. But any other station should be fine.
Here is the Toei website: https://www.kotsu.metro.tokyo.jp/eng/
From what I understand they are fairly easy to get, but you might want to print a picture of the tag to show the staff so that things go smoothly.
I have no personal experience with this, so, after your trip it would be great if you could tell everyone how it went!
- April 19, 2021 at 9:06 pm #10911
Thank you so much for your precious information. Do you think if we have already a priority card, we can show it to the station agent in order to get the tag more easily ? On this card, I have my name and photo on it.
- July 22, 2020 at 10:02 am #9172
Thank you so much!
- July 22, 2020 at 10:03 am #9173
That’s why we’re here!
- July 22, 2020 at 10:06 am #9174
PS – Are they only available to Tokyo residents?
- July 22, 2020 at 10:09 am #9175
As in, can you only get them in Tokyo? Or, can visitors get them?
- July 22, 2020 at 10:10 am #9176
Yes, can tourists get one?
- July 22, 2020 at 10:13 am #9177
I believe so. As far as I know, they are not official government-issued items and are just given to those who ask. But we have reached out on our social media to see if anyone can share real life experiences.
- July 22, 2020 at 10:29 am #9179
On the Osaka City website it states they give them out at city offices to those who need them regardless of the reason. So, should be ok…
I’m not sure if you speak Japanese, but if not, it might help if you print a copy of the image with a translation of something like “I would like a Help Mark because I have ___” (You don’t need to say the reason necessarily, but it could help speed up the process.)
- July 22, 2020 at 10:31 am #9180
- August 14, 2020 at 10:48 pm #9343
Thanks so much, the Help Mark seems to be what we need. There will be another couple that will be traveling with us who could use help and a wheelchair. This information is great to know before we start our trip so we can make our plans to include the necessary time to inquire and locate the cards. Thanks again.
- August 23, 2020 at 12:30 pm #9360
Just a small update. I was getting on the train today and there was a sticker showing the mark. I asked the staff who was with me and he confirmed it can be picked up at the station office.
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