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Unexpected results when using a Japanese Toilet: Confusing task

Unexpected results when using a Japanese Toilet: Confusing task

Using a toilet in Japan can turn into a complicated actiity, and may have embarrassing unexpected results. This is becauce there are toilets, and then there are Japanese toilets.

More sophisticated even public toilets come with various features such as heated  seats, in-built bidets and some even play you music.

Tourists are often unable to understand the many controls, finding going to the toilet more complicated than they thought.

In a bid to make itself more tourist-friendly ahead of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games, Japan’s Restroom Industry Association has agreed to create a set of standardized icons, so all tourists will now know their backside wash from their small flush.

Under the new icons, future Japanese toilets will use eight icons representing eight different options: Toilet lid opening/closing, toilet seat opening/closing, large flush, small flush, backside wash, bidet wash, dryer and stop.

When foreign tourists use public toilets such as at hotels and sightseeing facilities, it is difficult to understand the operation buttons.

The decision to create standardized icons came after results of a 2014 survey showed that 25 percent of tourists did not know how to use a Japanese-style toilet, according to a report by Gizmodo.

This isn’t the first time foreigners in Japan have gotten mixed up, with the country previously having to change its hot springs bathing symbol after tourists mistook it for a sign showing a restaurant selling hot food.

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