Japan Rail Pass and rail travel in Japan complete guide. Let's use the Japan Rail Pass to its maximum!!!
Ganbaro Tohoku


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1172 Comments to “Forums”

  1. Jensen says:

    Hi Takeshi

    I’m planning another trip to Japan and would like your wonderful expertise just like the last few time.
    I would also like to thank you for all those wonderful travel trip story and insights.

    This time I will be going to Kansai area.
    Key Places be Osaka, Kyoto, Kobe, Himeji, Okayama, Tottori, Nara, Ise and maybe Kinosakionsen.

    I’m planning to get three or all the rail pass below:
    JR West Rail Pass Kansai Area Pass (4 Day)
    JR West Rail Pass Kansai Wide Area (4 Day)
    San’in & Okayama Pass (3 Day)
    Kintetsu Rail Pass (5 Day)

    I haven’t exactly planned how long I will be there and which day where.

    I would like to know is there any special trains like Kintetsu 50000 series operating in those region?
    When using Kintetsu Rail Pass, if I travel on the Shimakaze limited express services, do I need buy the Shimakaze special fees (using one of three limited reserve), buy both limited express and Shimakaze special fees or I need to buy all fees (including basic fees)?

    On the last day of JR West Kansai Wide Area Pass I planned to connect it with the Saiín &Okayama Pass. (Staying one night in Tottori) However on the return journey I only have the Kansai Area pass to use and does not cover Okayama. What would be your suggestion of getting back from Tottori cost and time efficient?
    Buy a Shinkansen tickets from Okayama to Himeji?
    Buy a Super Hakuto between Tottori or Chizu and Himeji, where we can continue to Osaka? How much extra do I pay?
    Or should I totally by separate new ticket and use the Kansai Area Pass the next day?
    Also curious about the extra I need to pay via kinosakionsen?
    (I believe there would be a small gap between the area where either pass cover)

    Would also like to hear any side trip in the area you would recommend.

    Best Regards

  2. Alyssa Thong says:

    Hi Takeshi,

    Your website is very help to us, thank you so much!

    We will be combining JR Kansai Wide Area Pass and JR Hokuriku Area Pass to go from Kyoto to Kanazawa. I noticed there is a direct train to go from Kyoto to Kanazawa. If we are taking this direct train, do we need to get off at any station to re-enter the train since we will be using two different passes?

    Thank you for your time!

  3. Wen Xiang says:

    Hi Takeshi,

    I am planning to have a 10 day trip in japan from 8 august.

    starting from Osaka,
    after activating the pass on third day,
    i will travel to kyoto, tokyo with side trips to Izu, Mt.Fuji, etc.

    eventually, i need to go back to Kansai airport.

    i would like to ask will there be a pass off for the Rail pass if i travel long distance?;

    I am hoping to include a trip to kumamoto at 15th august for the event, Yamaga Toro Matsuri before travel to Tokyo.
    However, i am worried if there is a limit and i would need to pay addition cost to travel to kumamoto.

    Look forward to your reply!
    Wen Xiang

    • Hi Wen Xiang,

      As long as you have JR Pass, you get unlimited travel by JR trains. But if you are sure go to both Tokyo and Kumamoto, use 14 days pass. Or try to squeeze both Tokyo and Kumamoto in 7 days. The cheapest way is trip to Tokyo and Kumamoto in 7 days. But even 14 days pass is cheaper than round trip to Tokyo and Kumamoto from Osaka.

      If you can spend several days in Kansai area and then activate JR Pass for trip to Tokyo and Kumamoto to go back to Kansai airport, that is the best scenario.


      Takeshi / JP Rail

  4. Seiti says:

    Hi, Takeshi.

    I’m possibly travelling to Japan on Nov 8.

    I´m planning this route:

    Nov 10 – Tokyo Narita Airport / Morioka
    Nov 12 – Morioka / Kyoto
    Nov 14 – Kyoto / Kochi
    Nov 16 – Kochi / Hiroshima
    Nov 18 – Hiroshima / Tokyo
    Nov 21 – Tokyo / Tokyo Narita Airport

    Is it worth buying a JR Pass for 14 days? Or is it worth buying single tickets?

    Sorry for asking so many questions… but train system in Japan is quite complex.

    Thank you a lot.

  5. Singhee Ang says:

    Hi Takeshi,

    My wife and I are planning to go straight to Osaka from Narita. We would be arriving Narita on 23 August at about1730rs.

    We checked the JR Hyperdia and it seems we can only arrive at Shin-Osaka station the next day (24 August) after 8:00 in the morning. We were hoping to get to Osaka before midnight, using the JR Pass.

    Appreciate any advice how we can arrive earlier.

    Thank You

  6. John Braden says:


    Hello! I will be making a 25 day trip (my sixth) to Japan in March/April and was wondering about the Hokuriku Shinkansen services. My plan is to make it to Kesennuma from Kanazawa. The Hokuriku Shinkansen will be divided into two services; the Kagayaki and Hakutaka. The latter will be an all-stop Kodama-type service while the Kagayaki will be a limited stop service. Will the Kagayaki be more like the Hikari or Nozomi service on the JR Tokai, meaning, which service will the JRP be valid? And it looks like one can shave off maybe an hour or two from the current Kanazawa-EchigoYuzawa-Omiya stretch, is that so?

    My itinerary has me going to Tokyo, Kagoshima, Kumamoto, Nagasaki, Fukuoka, Hiroshima, Onomich, Kure, Matsuyama, Takamatsu, Kobe, Osaka, Kyoto, Kanazawa, Kesennuma, Ishinomaki, Minamisanriku, Rikuzentakata, Ofunato, Hirosaki, Hakodate and Sapporo. I’ll be using a 21-day Green pass.

    Thank you!

    • Hi John,

      At this moment, there is no official announcement about Hokuriku Shinkansen by JR Pass. But I believe all trains on Hokuriku Shinkansen will be covered fully by JR Pass. Because only JR Tokai do not allow one of Shinkansen trains, Nozomi. Mizuho is operated by JR Kyushu and West. But same fare table apply to Mizuho as Nozomi. On the other hand, Tohoku Shinkansen is covered by JR Pass fully. Hokuriku Shinkansen is operated by JR East and West. Kagayaki is same type of Hayabusa and Hakutaka is like Hayate.

      So only Gran class is not covered by JR Pass fully.


      Takeshi / JP Rail

  7. charlene says:

    Hi Takeshi,

    I am in the process of finalizing my plans to Japan end of July and would like your input. Please let me know if you think the JR pass is better or individual tickets

    Flying to Narita July 28 at 2:30pm so thinking to take NEX to Shibuya. Visit Harajuku and Shibuya

    July 29, activate JR pass. Go to Tsukiji market, asakusa sensoji temple

    July 30, go to Toyota city for the plant tour, Visit Nagoya

    July 31 Shijuki, akibahara

    August 1- hakone

    August 2- train to Kyoto. see Fushini inari shrine and golden temple

    August 3- day trip to Osaka

    August 4- Kyoto to Kansai airport

    Please let me know your thoughts on the best value for our transportation


  8. Carine says:

    Hi Takeshi San, many thanks for your quick response. I’m planning to go to Takayama or Kanazawa by train, stay for the night and take a bus to Shirakawago the next morning. I’ll take a late afternoon train back to Kyoto. Would it be easier to go via Takayama or Kanazawa?

    • Hi Carine,

      If you want to use train, Kanazawa is much easier because train runs more often than Takayama and get there faster. Both Kanazawa and Takayama are very beautiful city. It’s actually very hard to choose it. If you can use two full days, you can visit all Takayama, Shirakawago and Kanazawa. But you will be back to Kyoto late night.


      Takeshi / JP Rail

  9. Carine says:

    Hello Takeshi San,

    My flight is scheduled to arrive at the Kansai airport and my plan is to stay most of my 6 days/5 nights in Kyoto. During my stay I plan on doing day trips to Nara and Arashiyama and if possible Shirakawa Go. Should I get a JR pass or are there other passes that I should look into. BTW, I’ll be in Japan the first week of Dec.

    I look forward to your advice.


  10. Joyce Chong says:

    Hi Takeshi,

    First of all, thank you for all the useful information provided. I will be going to Tokyo and Osaka on December 2014. However, I need your advise to fully utilise the JR Pass. Here’s are some of the concerns:

    1) My flight will arrived in Kansai , Osaka in early morning, and I plan to take bullet train to Tokyo and stay in Tokyo for four nights.

    2) I would like to visit to Fuji Mountain too.

    3) On day 5, I plan to take bullet train back to Osaka and stay there for three nights.

    4) I would like to visit Kyoto and USJ too.

    * So far I haven’t plan the itinerary, but just want to know is it much more cheaper according to this plan? Or I should buy a one way bullet train ticket?

    Looking for your reply ! Thank you :)

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