Photo: PR Times
lifestyle

Japanese bus company converts retired vehicles into mobile saunas

6 Comments
By SoraNews24

Shinki Bus, which services Himeji City and surrounding areas, has been a prestigious transportation firm over the years.

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Even their mascot, Nikopa-chan, was a finalist in both the 2017 and 2019 nationwide Bus Character Championships.

However, this contest is now on indefinite hiatus, as the entire transportation industry has taken a big hit from the pandemic. Bus companies in particular were already facing hard times due to a declining population and general lifestyle changes, but the huge drop-off in commuting and tourism over the past two years has made running bus lines extremely difficult.

So, one way Shinki Bus plans to adapt is by diversifying into the mobile sauna market, which I don’t think existed until just now. This new service is called Sabus, which is a portmanteau of “sauna” and “bus.”

▼ The regular Shinki Bus logo of a bird is converted here into the fires of a sauna and the pin of a destination.

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Rather than let its valuable space go to waste, Shinki is currently converting a decommissioned city bus into a full-fledged steam room on wheels. To accomplish this the company has also created a subsidiary called “Ribahsu” which in Japanese is homonymous with “rebirth” and “re-bus.”

▼ Before

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▼ After

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Much of the bus’ interior is redone in a charming wooden design, and some of the buttons normally used to request a stop will be repurposed to generate steam.

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According to the press release, Sabus is intended to be parked in large areas for special events, but the presence of straps and handles on the seat might suggest that an actual moving sauna is perhaps a possibility.

More details about how Sabus will function will likely be revealed as its expected February 2022 completion date draws nearer. It is also only the first in a line of repurposed bus services that Ribahsu is planning such as mobile day care rooms or mobile shower and bath stations which may provide useful support in disaster hit areas.

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Source: Sabus, PR Times

Images: PR Times

Read more stories from SoraNews24.

-- Japan’s first Finnish-style sauna facility with private rooms opens in Tokyo

-- Surprise someone with an exclusive rental of a super V.I.P rooftop sauna, complete with sushi chef

-- Mt Fuji railway project receives approval from Yamanashi officials

© SoraNews24

©2022 GPlusMedia Inc.

6 Comments
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It's as if companies are running out of ideas and just choosing any old random thing..

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

It's as if companies are running out of ideas and just choosing any old random thing..

Welcome to Japan.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

We use the Shinki buses. Have to try this one. Single-sex or unisex?

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Is this part of their Sustainable Development Goals?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Shinki Bus, which services Himeji City and surrounding areas, has been a prestigious transportation firm over the years.

Well over half of bus routes in Japan lose money and are propped up by taxpayers. Very few ones that make enough money for a firm to be "prestigious" will be in inaka. Himeji is half bed-town for Kobe/Osaka, but many of those commuters will live near the JR and Hankyu lines and not use buses.

I have no proof they used it, but there is government financing for businesses to try new projects, which has been increased for businesses hit by Covid to help them diversify. This conversion may sound like clever lateral thinking, but the taxpayer may be on the hook for funding it. Every Chamber of Commerce in inaka will be well up on what grants are available for what projects.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Most buses I've ridden on here were like saunas.

Forgot to bring a birch twig, unfortunately.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

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