Tokyo company gives extra holiday for nonsmoking employees

TOKYO — A marketing company in Tokyo has opted for a novel perk for its employees: an extra week's holiday for those who are nonsmokers.

A spokesman for Piala, Hirotaka Matsushima, said Thursday that the company began offering the six days of vacation to all of its 120 staff members in September.

Matsushima, himself a nonsmoker, said the policy was proving popular.

He said the policy was installed as a benefit for nonsmokers to compensate for smoking breaks.

Smoking is still quite prevalent in Japan although most office workers must do their puffing in designated smoking rooms and outdoor areas. But most restaurants and bars still allow smoking, at least in some areas.

Piala, established in 2004, says it provides advertising and other marketing for direct marketers and other companies.

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