Japan Airlines has launched a clothing rental service called Any Wear, Anywhere with the aim of encouraging passengers to travel with less luggage, thus reducing the airline’s fuel consumption and associated carbon emissions; this will be achieved through a partnership with Sumitomo. A positive side effect is that travelers would be able to skip check-in. According to The Independent, the service began on the 5th of July and will continue for at least the next 13 months.
To use the service, passengers can visit the Any Wear, Anywhere website and book the rental service in advance. They must provide information about their flight, clothing size, season, length of stay at least one month in advance. The rented clothing will be delivered directly to the passenger’s accommodation in Japan prior to arrival.
With the emphasis in sustainability, there is a growing movement around the world to promote sustainable tourism.Japan Airlines
The rental cost varies from ¥4,000 to ¥7,000 yen (approximately 25 to 45 euros), depending on the number of garments rented. Passengers can rent up to eight sets of clothing for a period of up to two weeks. Sumitomo, in collaboration with dry cleaning company Hakuyosha and clothing supplier Wefabrik, is responsible for the procurement, cleaning and delivery of the clothes.
“Travelers increasingly desire to make more sustainable choices regarding their travel destinations, accommodations, transportation etc, they still lack sufficient options,” said Japan Airlines. “Most travelers now enjoy eating at restaurants and staying at hotels at their destination, but they generally bring their own clothing from home.”
The offer will be limited to visitors traveling with Japan Airlines flights until August 2024. However, if successful, Sumitomo may consider expanding the service to other oneworld carriers, such as American Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific and Malaysia Airlines, which currently operate flights to Japan.
Japan Airlines is committed to sustainability as part of its Vision 2030 program. While the airline aims to increase its use of sustainable jet fuel, it is exploring other avenues to reduce its carbon footprint due to the limited availability of sustainable jet fuel at present.
While eliminating some clothing may seem insignificant, even small weight reductions can have a significant impact on carbon emissions over long distances. Japan Airlines estimates that removing one kilogram of weight from a flight between Tokyo (HND) and New York (JFK) can reduce aircraft carbon emissions by 0.75 kilograms.
The Any Wear, Anywhere initiative has the potential to have a substantial positive impact, especially considering the growing number of foreign visitors to Japan. In May 2023, nearly 1.9 million foreign travelers visited Japan, reaching approximately 70% of pre-pandemic levels. By encouraging visitors to use the clothing rental service, the initiative not only reduces carbon emissions from airplanes, but also helps address the problem of clothing waste associated with fast fashion.