Crash Course Boom
The Tokyo Olympic Games are just 6 years away, and people in the capital are gearing up to welcome visitors from all over the world.
But there's one big hurdle facing the hosts and visitors alike: language.
In the first installment of our new series "Testing Japan's English" we look at how people from many walks of life are trying to overcome their fear and improve conversational English.
Tadanobu Hara is a 62-year-old veteran taxi driver. He's been taking language lessons for the last year, and he's not the only cabbie on the course. The Tokyo Taxi Center organises lessons for drivers who want to communicate better with their foreign passengers.
They study once a month, and many say the classes give them the confidence to try speaking English.
One driver says he wants foreign visitors to like Japan and he hopes taxi drivers can help them by speaking English. Hara says he set the Tokyo Olympics as a target and wants to practice English as much as possible to help foreign visitors during the Games.