Floral rose ballpoint pens, fuzzy fuchsia slippers and even pink camouflage wallets are covered with the face of Hello Kitty. Sanrio’s white Japanese bobtail cat has claimed another product to settle her furry face: Introducing the new Hello Kitty-themed train in Taiwan.
On March 21, the new high-speed train made its inaugural round trip between the two Taiwanese cities of Taipei and Taitung. After the express train’s 376 passengers boarded, there was still room for Hello Kitty paraphernalia on the headrests, walls, serving carts, meal boxes and carpet. More than 300 headrests were swiped by passengers on last Monday’s trek.
Sanrio specially designed a Kitty train master, wearing a captain’s hat and uniform, to pose with enthusiastic passengers on future travels.
The Hello Kitty-themed train was built in partnership with Hello Kitty’s creator Sanrio Taiwan, Eva Air and Taiwan Railway Administration to entice more international visitors to Taiwan.
The train’s eight cars are painted to mirror scenes from around the world including Asia, Europe, North America and Australia. “The design concept behind this train is ‘Travel around the world with Hello Kitty,’” a TRA representative told CNN.
For a Hello Kitty lover who needs a once-in-a-lifetime Hello Kitty experience, this just might be a hit. The new Hello Kitty-themed train will frequently travel on Fridays through Sundays starting on April 21 from Taipei’s Shulin Station to Taitung’s Zhiben Station.
Lauren Spiler is a freelance journalist based in Athens, Georgia, but most call her Spiler.