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Oct 29, 2007 09:30 PM

Solo in Tokyo... Is eating alone taboo?

I will be visiting Tokyo solo for 6 days in the middle of November. Since I am alone, I fear that my meal may be limited to quick Japanese eats (i.e. ramen, Mos Burger, 7-11...etc). Is it frowned upon the eat alone in a restaurant? I definitely dont want to miss out on a great sushi experience but I dont want people looking at me funny if I am lone. I love all types of Japanese food

Can anyone recommend any places? I will be staying at the Keio Plaza in Shinjuku but will be visiting all areas of Tokyo.


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  1. Someone asked this exact question a couple of months ago. You should do a search. There's no taboo against eating alone. Most places have counter seating, where you'll often find solo diners. I think Tokyo is actually a good city for eating alone.

    1. You'll be fine, I eat alone all the time.

      As SilverJay said, tons of places have counters to sit at.

      Good luck.

      1 Reply
      1. re: lost squirrel

        I almost always dine alone when I'm in Tokyo, and from fast food to high end, I've never had a problem. It's an excellent city for solo diners.

      2. Since there is no tipping in Japan, dining alone isn't a problem. Waiters and waitresses don't care how many people occupy a space since it is all the same to them. It's quite common for solo diners to occupy tables for extended periods of time in some restaurants. Unless the place is super busy, they don't care what customers do for the most part.

        1. Thanks guys! I cant wait!

          1. I don't know if it's taboo but I was in Tokyo alone for most of October 1999 and eating solo didn't seem to be a problem except the occasion I ducked into a noodle bar in some central Tokyo station. As I was eating, I realized I was the only female in there and it dawned on me that this dining establishment was really for the "salarymen", i.e. a working man's lunch spot and not for women. I didn't feel that uncomfortable but on hindsight, I should've scoped the place before sitting down.