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Japan Airlines Trials Innovative Clothes Rental Service for Sustainable Travelers

The new service allows those traveling to Japan to hire up to eight sets of clothes for up to two weeks

by Fergus Cole

July 5, 2023

Photo: Courtesy of Japan Airlines

Passengers traveling with Japan Airlines (JAL) now have the option to pack light when heading to the Far East, as the carrier is set to trial a clothes rental scheme in a push for more sustainable travel.

The Japanese flag carrier has partnered with business investment firm Sumitomo Corporation to launch the innovative ‘Any Wear, Anywhere’ service for tourists and business travelers flying to Japan.

Photo: Japan Airlines, Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner. Courtesy of Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport

Under the scheme, which is on an initial trial from July 5, 2023, through to August 31, 2024, passengers will be able to rent a set of clothes for the entire duration of their stay in Japan, meaning all they will have to bring onboard with them is their valuables, the clothes they’re wearing, and some toiletries.

Japan Airlines hopes that the new service will encourage its customers to cut down on their luggage, which would, in turn, help the airline to reduce its carbon emissions, and at the same time, help passengers to save on baggage fees. According to the carrier, reducing weight by 1kg on a long-haul flight between New York and Tokyo could help to cut out 0.75 kilograms of carbon emissions.

The clothing rental scheme prices start at around $28 and rise up to $48, depending on the number of outfits you want to hire. Passengers can rent up to eight outfits for up to two weeks.

Photo: Courtesy of Japan Airlines

To sign up for the service, you must visit the airline’s ‘Any Wear, Anywhere’ website at least one month before your flight, where you can select the clothes you desire. You must enter your flight reservation number, arrival, and departure dates, and accommodation details, followed by a payment. You can then pick up the clothes you ordered at your hotel in Japan and drop them off at the exact location when it’s time to leave.

“With more and more people flying again after the COVID-19 pandemic, and with the recent emphasis on sustainability, there is a growing movement around the world to promote sustainable tourism,” said Japan Airlines in a press release.

“Travelers increasingly desire to make more sustainable choices regarding their travel destinations, accommodations, transportation, etc., but they still lack sufficient options. For example, most travelers now enjoy eating at restaurants and staying at hotels at their destination, but they generally bring their own clothing from home.”

Photo: Japan Airlines, Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner. Courtesy of Denisse Leon / Unsplash

“The concept of the Service is, therefore, to provide a travel experience with minimal luggage by offering clothing rentals at the destination, thereby creating environmental value. By expanding the use of the Service, we aim to create an environment where travelers can use local options for all aspects of their clothing, food, and accommodation, transforming travel and business trips into more sustainable experiences.”

The service is currently only available for passengers traveling to Japan with Japan Airlines. However, if the trial proves successful, Sumitomo plans to roll out the service to other oneworld alliance members, which include American Airlines, British Airways, Qantas, and Qatar Airways.