Direct access to Shin Osaka, Kyoto from Kansai airport, Kansai Airport Limited Express “Haruka”

Limited Express Haruka connects Kansai airport and Kyoto via Tennoji and Shin-Osaka.
Limited Express Haruka connects Kansai airport and Kyoto via Tennoji and Shin-Osaka.

Kansai Airport Limited Express Haruka may be your first train in Japan. It is operated between Kansai (Osaka) airport and Greater Osaka area, Kyoto, Kusatsu and Maibara. But please be careful that Haruka does not stop at Osaka station. It stop at Tennoji and Shin-Osaka. If you want to go to Osaka station, you have to transfer to the local train at Shin-Osaka. This express train has 30 round trips a day and are operated mostly every 30 minutes.

*The information in this article is current at the time of writing.

After you arrive Kansai airport, you can exchange your Japan Rail Pass and take this train to Osaka. Japan Rail Pass cover fully this train. Haruka takes you to Shin-Osaka station for about 1 hour. It is fast and convenient. But this train does not take you to Osaka station and does not drop you off at the door of Hotel either. We have an Airport limousine bus to many place in Greater Osaka and Hi-speed ferry service to Kobe. So if you go to Greater Osaka area, I recommend you to take other transportation.

And also if you stay several days in downtown Osaka, please think about saving your rail pass days. Please refer this tips.

Route and stations

Kansai Airport(関西空港) x
Hineno(日根野) *
Izumi-Fuchu(和泉府中) *
Tennoji(天王寺) x
Shin-Osaka(新大阪) x
Kyoto(京都) x
Yamashina(山科) x
Otsu(大津) x
Ishiyama(石山) x
Kusatsu(草津) x
Moriyama(守山) x
Yasu(野洲) x
Oumi-Hachiman(近江八幡) x
Hikone(彦根) x
Maibara(米原) x

x:All train stop *:some train stop

If you are looking for the timetable of Haruka, you can find it at the bottom of JR West website.

View Haruka (Kansai Airport Express) in a larger map

Special tickets and passes for Haruka

Japan Rail Pass cover this train. But if you think about purchasing single ticket, think about “JR West Kansai Area Pass” or “ICOCA and Haruka”.

JR West Kansai Area Pass

This pass is originally designed for unlimited ride in Kansai area. But you can use one day pass to get on Haruka only. The price of one day pass is 2,000 yen. You can purchase at Kansai airport station on the spot. This is cheaper than single ticket (basic fare + limited express surcharge = 2,470 yen) from Kansai airport to Shin-Osaka. If you go to Shin-Osaka and beyond, you will get much greater deal. Please see JR West site to get the details.

ICOCA and Haruka

If you take some local trains after arrival by Haruka, this special combination ticket gives you the best deal. Especially round trip type is cheaper than round trip by Haruka between Kansai airport and Shin-Osaka. Please see the post, ICOCA and Haruka ticket. Very flexible and good deal for tourist who stay in Kansai to get the details.


JR West 281 series is used for Haruka. This train was introduced at the same time of Kansai airport opened in 1994.

*Sonic Rail Garden has copyright for all images of accommodations below.

Green seat

The seat configuration is 2+1. It is a big seat, but the head rest is so small.
Ltd Exp Haruka Ltd Exp Haruka Ltd Exp Haruka Ltd Exp Haruka Ltd Exp Haruka

Ordinary seat

The seat configuration is 2+2. The table is so small. It cannot be used for eating, drinking and using a laptop.
Ltd Exp Haruka Ltd Exp Haruka Ltd Exp Haruka

Washroom and other facilities

Ltd Exp Haruka Ltd Exp Haruka Ltd Exp Haruka Ltd Exp Haruka
Haruka has some luggage storage. But it does not have any lock and security.
Ltd Exp Haruka Ltd Exp Haruka Ltd Exp Haruka

Haruka train information

1 2 3 4 5 6

Some trains are operated by 9 cars formation.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

*G=Green seat R=Reserved seat NR=Non reserved seat

198 thoughts on “Direct access to Shin Osaka, Kyoto from Kansai airport, Kansai Airport Limited Express “Haruka””

  1. Hello Takeshi,
    What a wonderful and useful post to read. I have a few questions based on my itineraries. Below is my plan:

    Day1 (8/10/16): arrive in KIX at 7pm
    .Take Limited Express Haruka to Shin-Osaka station, stay at Courtyard Shin Osaka which is few step aways from the station.
    Day 2 (8/11): explore Osaka area
    Day 3 (8/12):
    .Catch Limited Express Haruka to Kyoto station
    .Stay at Crowne Plaza Ana Kyoto which offers free shuttle bus to/from Kyoto station every 15′.
    Day 4,5 (8/13,8/14): spend time in Kyoto
    Day 6 (8/15): depart to Yokohama for cruise
    .Take bullet train Nozomi (Tokaido Shinkansen) from Kyoto to Shin-Yokohama
    . then transfer to JR Yokohama Line Rapid for Sakuragicho to Yokohama station.

    Which is my best option:
    1. Buy Icoca & Haruka package on arrival day at KIX for transportations around Osaka and Kyoto including the trip from Shin Osaka to Kyoto on day 3? Do I have to pay extra for shin osaka to kyoto?
    2. Buy Haruka one way from KIX-Shin Osaka on day1, then buy Kansai Area Pass 4 days (cover unlimited on JR and Haruka limited express) or Kansai Thru Pass 3 days ( cover non JR trains, buses,cable cars and discount to museum and attractions).
    Thank you in advance for your time.
    Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!!!

    MP Tran

    1. Hi MP Tran,

      The best option for your trip is ICOCA and Haruka one way ticket and Kyoto city deal.
      You can take Haruka to Shin-Osaka on arrival day. ICOCA can be used to take subway in Osaka and take Special rapid train to Kyoto from Shin-Osaka. You cannot take Haruka again. Once you exit the station, Haruka portion is expired. You need to pay single fare or using ICOCA. Special rapid is okay to get Kyoto.

      In Kyoto, city deal is enough. Both Kansai area pass and Kansai thru pass are too much.


      Takeshi /

  2. Does the Pasmo card cover the Haruka limited express ?
    Or should I just get a JR West Kansai Area Pass (Haruka) KIX and then use Pasmo for further transfer ?
    Thank you

  3. Hi Takeshi,

    What a nice and helpful post. Much appreciated. I have a quick question based on my itinerary.
    My plan is as below.
    Day 1: KIX-Kyoto
    Day 2-3: Kyoto
    Day 4: Kyoto-Osaka
    Day 5: Osaka (Umeda)-KIX

    In this case, should I get Icoca Haruka return ticket which I can use for KIX-Kyoto and Tennoji-KIX? And use Icoca for Kyoto-Osaka?
    Also, for 3days plan in Kyoto, Kyoto rail pass is recommended?

    Thanks in advance.


  4. Hi! We are planning a trip to Osaka. Arriving late at night on Dec 7 and staying the night at Nikko airport hotel. Staying Bishoen area for the next 3 nights. Plan on going to univeral, osaka castle, Namba, Shinsibashi, Aquarium. Day trips to kyoto, Nara, and or Kobe. What would be the cheapest pass you would recommend to us. We are 3 adults traveling together. Thanks.


  • Your comment will not be shown until I approve.
  • Please do not ask me to make your itinerary. Because I am not your personal travel agent. I am very happy to check your itinerary. But please try to make the plan by yourself. In this website, there are lots of resources to make your plan.
  • If you want to ask me which pass suits your plan, please tell me your detailed itinerary and location to stay. I cannot choose any deals without the detailed itinerary because I have to compare the total single fare and deals

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