Tokyo is the world’s most expensive city for food, followed by Zurich and Geneva, according to a report released by the Swiss bank UBS covering 72 cities in 58 countries.
The food basket composed of 39 different representative products, used as the measurement unit, costs USD 928 in Tokyo, USD 715 in Geneva and USD 704 in Zurich, the bank’s annual Prices and Earnings report said yesterday.
The two cheapest cities of the world are Mumbai and Delhi, where the same baskets of foods cost USD 186 and USD 208 respectively.
The average global cost of the food basket is USD 424.
The report also showed that Tokyo is among the three most expensive cities in general, for goods and services, behind Oslo and Zurich, while Delhi and Mumbai are again the two cheapest. The Japanese capital is 8.
Tokyo has been crowned the most expensive city in the world. The survey was conducted by the consultancy firm Mercer, which analyses costs faced by visitors from the U.S.
Since the US dollar has weakened to the Japanese yen, this could at least partly explain the situation.
Fortunately for tourists visiting Tokyo, there are still some things which can be done for free.
Along similar lines that Yamashita Park in Yokohama was built with debris from the 1923 Great Kanto Earthquake, a new proposal has been made by the mayor of Urayasu, Hideki Matsuzaki to fill in a part of Tokyo Bay with debris from last years earthquake and tsunami which devastated northern Japan.
Uruyasu city is in Chiba prefecture, west of Tokyo, famous for its Disney parks.
A park would then be built on the land, helping to create a new green space in congested Tokyo while helping to clear the rubbish and debris left over the earthquake. The proposal is now under consideration by the government.
Tokyo has been accepted as one of three cities to bid for the 2020 Summer Olympics, joining Madrid and Istanbul.
“It is a great pleasure and true honor that Tokyo has been accepted as a candidate city,” Tokyo governor Shintaro Ishihara, chairman of the Tokyo 2020 bid committee, said at a news conference Thursday.
The final decision will be made in September 2013. Tokyo hosted the Olympics in 1964 and they made a failed bid for the 2016 Olympics.
The world’s tallest tower, the Tokyo Sky Tree Tower opened yesterday to the public. Around 200,000 people were expected to visit the tower on the first day alone.
About 8000 lucky people who had advance reservations were able to go up the tower to the observation decks.
“I left my house at 5 a.m. to get on the first shinkansen of the day,” said Norio Sone, a 77-year-old visitor from Niigata Prefecture, while waiting in a long line for an elevator up to the observation deck.
“I wanted to climb up the world’s tallest building,” Sone said, but he added that he was disappointed by the cloudy weather.
The tower is expected to bring in 32 million visitors in the first year of operation, bringing an economic boost to surrounding area.
Tokyo has breathed a sigh of relief as an escaped penguin has now been found swimming in Tokyo Bay. The penguin scaled a 13 foot wall and squeezed through a barbed wire fence to escape Tokyo Zoo.
“You can see it’s got the same ring around its flipper and identical facial patterns,” said Kazuhiro Sakamoto, deputy director of the Tokyo Sea Life Park, when shown footage of the tubby escapee taken by Japan’s Coast Guard.
“It didn’t look like it has gotten thinner over the past two months, or been without food. It doesn’t seem to be any weaker. So it looks as if it’s been living quite happily in the middle of Tokyo Bay.”
Read more here.
Since Obama’s announcement that he supported same-sex marriage, gay couples around the world have started planning wedding ceremonies, whether it is legal in their country or not. It is likely to be a long time before same-sex marriages become legal in Japan, but it hasn’t stopped one lesbian couple from making plans to hold a “commitment ceremony” at Tokyo Disneyland.
“My partner and I just love going to Disneyland, so when we saw a pamphlet advertising wedding receptions by the Cinderella Castle in Tokyo Disneyland we called and asked if we could hold our wedding there,” Higashi told Reuters in a telephone interview.
But Higashi is openly lesbian and her upcoming commitment ceremony is being characterised in the media as the first “gay wedding” to be held at Japan’s Magic Kingdom.
When Higashi gave them details of her plans, the hotel initially had one request.
“When I explained it would be with my female partner they hesitated and asked that one of us wear a tuxedo as the sight of two people with the same wedding dress would make other visitors to the park uncomfortable,” Higashi said.
After she questioned this, the resort promised to check things out and get back to her. A week later, Higashi was told she and her partner would be allowed to both wear wedding dresses, or both tuxedos, if so inclined.
A FedEx cargo plane crashed and killed its two pilots in Tokyo on Tuesday. The wreckage was quickly cleaned up by workers and the runway was soon reopened.
“We have a team of experts here to work closely with our folks here in Japan, and with the government authorities, to get all the necessary information about the incident, and we’re going to spend as much time as necessary until we get to all the issues and the facts and the information that we need,” said William Margaritis, senior vice president of communication of FedEx.
See crash footage at Narita airport here on YouTube:
Tom Cruise arrived in Tokyo with his wife Katie Holmes and two-year-old daughter Suri, to promote his new movie Valkyrie.
“We’re gonna hang out. We’re gonna see some sights, you know, and we want to eat great sushi that they have here, and just looking forward to seeing some friends,” he told reporters.
A globelike screen which featured at the 2005 Aichi Expo, has been moved to the National Science Museum in Tokyo.
The screen is used to show computer-generated scientific video programs.
Further details (Japanese).
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