Narita airport access guide. Narita airport to Tokyo deal guide

Narita (NRT)
Narita express
Narita Express is one of the train which runs between Narita airport and Tokyo.

Narita Airport is one of two international airports in Tokyo. You may arrive in this airport from your country. There are many ways to get downtown Tokyo by the train and the bus.

If you use JR Pass, JR East Pass and other JR deals right after you arrive in Narita, you may use it to get Tokyo. But some of you do not intend to use the pass right after the arrival. Or you may stay in Tokyo only and are looking for the deal which covers Narita airport to/from Tokyo only.

In this post, I will show you the access route between Narita airport and Tokyo. I will also explain you about the deal and the discount fare, and the budget type bus services.

Overview

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Narita Airport is sometimes called New Tokyo International Airport. But this airport is not located in Tokyo. It is located at Chiba prefecture and it is about 1 hour away from most part of downtown Tokyo.

As you saw the train route map above, JR and Keisei Railway connect Narita Airport and downtown Tokyo. I will explain what kind of trains are operated by JR and Keisei Railway. And there are many bus lines available too. I will tell you the bus service later in this post too.

First of all, I would like to explain you about Narita airport stations.

Narita airport arrival level and the stations

Arrival gate at Terminal 2

There are three airport terminal buildings in Narita airport, Terminal 1, 2 and 3. The trains stations are located underground of Terminal 1 and 2. These are called Narita Airport Terminal 1 station and Narita Airport Terminal 2 station. If you depart/arrive in Terminal 3, you have to walk from Terminal 2 station. It takes 15 minutes from Terminal 2 to Terminal 3.

It is quite easy to get the stations from the terminal. You can find the signage which says “Railway” at the arrival level very easily. You can go down by the escalators to get the stations quickly.

You can find this signage easily.

Both JR and Keisei Railway use same stations at both terminals. There are the ticket windows for the foreign tourists. But in these days, Japan has been very popular destination and the ticket window is very busy. You may find some more information at JR East and Keisei Railway official sites:

JR East Travel Service Center (Narita)
Keisei Railway Information Center

If you exchange the rail pass, please expect to spend at least 20 minutes. In my experience, 20 minutes is minimum. You may spend more. I have spent 45 minutes before to exchange the pass and book the train seats. Please do not make a tight travel plan.

JR East Travel Center is the exchange place of JR Pass, JR East Pass. You may pick up online reservation ticket.
Narita Airport Terminal 2 station ticket gate. Keisei railway (left) and JR (right)

If you take a bus, you can find the bus ticket counter at the arrival level.

Limousine bus ticket counter

It is located near the gate after the custom. You can find it easily.

I recorded the movie from the arrival of the flight to the station in the terminal 2 of Narita Airport. Please find the movie below to find the route more clearly:

JR trains

JR train lines are shown by the green line in the map above. If you go to Tokyo, Shinagawa, Shibuya, Shinjuku, Yokohama, JR line is better choice. There are two kinds of trains running from/to Narita airport by JR. These are Narita Express and Yokosuka-Sobu line rapid train. Both trains are covered by JR Pass, JR East Pass Nagano Niigata, JR East Pass Tohoku, Tokyo Wide Pass, Hokuriku Arch Pass and JR East South Hokkaido Rail Pass.

Narita Express

Narita Express is JR limited express train. It connects Narita airport, Tokyo, Shinagawa, Yokohama, Shinjuku, Shibuya and Ikebukuro. Some trains go to Omiya, Takao and Ofuna. Please see the link below to find more information about Narita Express:

By the way, if you have a plan to go to Nagoya, Kyoto and Osaka from Narita airport, you can take Narita Express to get Shinagawa. And you can catch the Shinkansen at Shinagawa. You can change Narita Express and the Shinkansen train at Tokyo too. But Shinagawa is easier.

Please find how to change the trains in Shinagawa station in the movie below:

Recommended deal – N’EX Tokyo Round Trip Ticket

This is the round trip deal between Narita airport and Tokyo, surrounding area by Narita Express and the ordinary train. This round trip deal, “N’EX Tokyo Round Trip Ticket” is sold at 4000 yen. It is valid for 14 days. You may change the trains as many as you want in the designated area and go anywhere in coverage area, such as JR stations in downtown Tokyo, Yokohama, Omiya, Kamakura, Maihama (Tokyo Disneyland) and many more places.

You can find the coverage map and more information about this deal in the link below:

N’EX Tokyo Round Trip Ticket, JR East official site.

Unfortunately there is no one way deals available.

Yokosuka-Sobu line rapid train

This rapid train was called “Rapid Airport Narita”. This train runs on same route as Narita Express between Narita airport and Ofuna. But this train is a sort of the commute trains. You can take this train by a base fare ticket only. But you cannot reserve a seat and you may have to stand up.

If you go to Chiba, this train is your choice. But if you go to Tokyo or further stations, Narita Express is better choice.

Please see the link below to find more information about Yokosuka-Sobu line rapid train:

There is no deals available which cover only Yokosuka-Sobu line rapid train. If you use JR pass or other JR deals, of course you can take this train by these passes.

Keisei Railway

Keisei Railway is one of the major private railways in Kanto region. It connects Narita airport and Ueno, Nippori. And also some trains go through Tokyo Toei subway and Keikyu Railway. You can get Oshiage (Tokyo Skytree), Asakusa, Shimbashi, Haneda airport directly.

Keisei Railway is not covered by any JR deals, such as JR Pass, Tokyo Wide Pass. But there are some deals available to take Keisei Railway limited express “Skyliner”.

Skyliner

Keisei Railway Skyliner is the fastest train other than Shinkansen.

Skyliner is the fastest train of Keisei Railway. And this train actually is the fastest train in all Japan trains except the Shinkansen.

This express train is the fastest way to get downtown Tokyo. It takes only 36 minutes to Nippori and 41 minutes to Ueno. Especially if you go to Ueno or other stations on north part of Yamanote line, this train is the best way.

e.g.
JR’s Narita Express connects Narita airport and Ikebukuro directly. But if you take Skyliner to Nippori and change to Yamanote line ther to Ikebukuro, it is faster than Narita Express.

You may find much more information about Skyliner in Keisei Railway official site:

Keisei Skyliner official site – Skyliner

The seat is good and comfortable for 45 minutes ride.

By the way, if you want to change the trains between Skyliner and Yamanote line, Nippori is better transfer station than Ueno. Keisei Railway and JR stations have the platforms side by side. You have to exit and enter stations but these are same location. If you change the trains at Ueno, you have to walk a bit. Nippori is much more recommended than Ueno.

Keisai Railway is one of major private railway companies in Tokyo area. This railway’s limited express train that is called “Skyliner” is the fastest train service to get downtown Tokyo. It connects Narita and Ueno in about 45 minutes.

Recommended deal – Skyliner discount ticket and subway combo ticket

There are a few deals which covers Skyliner.

The basic one is Skyliner discount ticket:

Skyliner discount ticket, Keisei railway official site

One way special discount fare is 2,200 yen. This is higher than half amount of N’ex Tokyo Round Trip Ticket. But you can purchase either one way or round trip. One way deal is available for either directions, Narita to Nippori/Ueno or Ueno/Nippori to Narita. This deal is very flexible.

Keisei Railway also offers Skyliner and Tokyo Subway Ticket combo deal. There are both one way and round trip available as well. One way deal can be used for either way, to Narita airport or from Narita airport. And you may choose 24 hours, 48 hours and 72 hours subway pass. The price is starting from 2,800 yen. Please see the link below to get the details.

Keisei Skyliner and Tokyo Subway Ticket, Keisei railway official site

The subway lines cover most part of downtown Tokyo. You can get most of places by subway. So Tokyo Subway Ticket is very convenient. The following link shows you how to use Tokyo Subway Ticket:

Keisei Access Express

Some of Keisei Railway Access Express go to Haneda airport directly from Narita airport via Toei subway line.

If you want to access to Asakusa, Ginza, Haneda or other places along Toei Subway Asakusa line, Keisei Railway’s Access Express takes you these places directly. Keisei Railway line is connected with Tokyo Toei Subway Asakusa line at Oshiage. Many Keisei Railway trains go through subway line. You can get Asakusa, Nihombashi, Higashi-Ginza without changing the trains. Toei Subway Asakusa line is also connected with Keikyu Railway at Sengakuji. Some Access Express go through Keikyu Railway line as well and get Haneda airport via Shinagawa.

This is a sort of commute train. It does not offer the luxury interior. However any express surcharges are not required. You can take this train by a base fare ticket only.

There is no deals available to take this train but the base fare is quite reasonable. The fare is around 1,300 yen from Narita airport to these areas. Please find the link below:

Keisei Railway official site – Access Express fares from major station

This train connects Narita and Nippori, Ueno too. If you want to save your travel cost, you may choose this train instead of Skyliner.

Airport Limousine bus / Limousine and Metro deal

Narita Airport Limousine Bus departs from just outside of the terminal building.

Airport limousine is most convenient option if you stay in the major high-end hotel in Tokyo. You can get the hotel door directly from Narita Airport. And also the bus depart/arrive in Terminal 3 too. There is no train stations at Terminal 3.

Limousine bus stop signage

The fare to most places in downtown Tokyo is 3,100 yen. It is expensive choice. But there are lots of deals available to cut your cost.

Recommended deals – Limousine and Tokyo Subway Ticket, Return Voucher and combo deals

There are many deals available.

The first one is “Multi voucher” and “Return voucher”. These are two round trips and round trip discount ticket. If you look for the deal which covers only Limousine bus, this deal is recommended.

The second one is Limousine and Subway pass. This is same type of the deal as Keisei Skyliner and Tokyo Subway Ticket which I explained above in this post.

I picked only two deals here but you can find all deals in the official site :

Airport Limousine official site – Discounted Ticket

Low Cost Bus TYO-NRT

Keisei Bus Tokyo Shuttle (C) Keisei Bus H636 Tokyo Shuttle – Comyu

The bus connects Narita airport and Tokyo station at only 1,000 yen. This is most affordable way to get downtown Tokyo.

This bus service is operated by a few bus companies. But it doesn’t matter to take any company’s bus. All you have to do is purchasing a ticket in the terminal building and get of the bus.

I used this bus from Narita airport terminal 2 to Tokyo station. Please find my review in the movie below. You may find where and how to purchase a ticket, the interior of the bus, facility and scenery on the way to Tokyo from the bus:

Please find the fare and the timetable in the official site below:

TYO-NRT official site

Check it on the short movie

I picked top five ways to get Tokyo from Narita on the movie below. Please check it up.

There are many ways and many deals from/to Narita airport. I hope that you have found the best one for your trip and it will save your cost.

Comments

  1. Charisma says:

    Hi Takeshi,

    First of all, thank you so much for all your hard work with developing itineraries and routes! My friend and I are going to Japan this upcoming 7/28-8/4 and would love to get your opinion. Here is our itinerary

    7/28: Arrive in Osaka (KIX) 11:50 AM. Staying at around Kita-Ward. Would like to explore Osaka.
    7/29: Arrive in Kyoto (likely noon) and staying in Higashi-Otowa
    Explore until 7/31.
    7/31: Arrive in Tokyo Shinagawa station. Staying near Gotanda station. Explore until 8/4 w/ plan to have a day trip in Mt. Fuji.
    8/4: Leave to Narita airport.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated to figure out the cheapest but most convenient way to get around! Thanks so much!

  2. Nora says:

    Hi Takeshi-San

    I would like to ask for your opinion the best transportation for my trip this coming December

    Day 1 – Arrival at Haneda. Take Shinkansen to Sapporo
    Day 2 – Sapporo
    Day 3 – Sapporo
    Day 4 – Sapporo to Osaka
    Day 5 – Osaka – Kyoto – Osaka
    Day 6 – Osaka
    Day 7 – Osaka – Tokyo
    Day 8 – Tokyo
    Day 9 – Tokyo
    Day 10 – Tokyo and return

    So I need to activate my JR Pass from Day 1 – Day 7 right? But I’m not sure whether in Sapporo there are any JR line that i can use.

    Thank you in advance!

  3. Henry says:

    Hi Takeshi,

    I need advice on transport from Narita airport as well as general travel during my stay: I have already purchased 7 day JR National pass. My itinerary is:

    Day 1: Arrive to Narita Airport – Check in to accomodation at Nakano

    Day 2: Sightseeing Shibuya, Harajuku, Shinjuku

    Day 3: Hakone

    Day 4: Tokyo / Travel to Osaka

    Day 5-8: Osaka (will also visit Kyoto and Hiroshima)

    Day 9: Travel back to Tokyo and check in accomodation at Tokyo Bay

    Day 10: Sightseeing Akasuka, Akihabara, and Ginza

    Day 11: Disneyland

    Day 12: Travel to Narita Airport

    I am confused on which is the best option to take from the airport and back. Also which passes to buy for general travel?

    I really appreciate your help, thanks.

  4. Michael says:

    Hi Takeshi

    My 2 weeks trip is looking like this

    Arriving and staying in Narita (18/07 – 25/07)
    Travelling to Southern Osaka, near KIX (25/07-31-07)

    What would be the best choice for daily public transportation in Narita to Tokyo and around Osaka. Also what would be the best choice for a single ride from Narita to Osaka.

    Thanks in advance
    Michael

  5. Kathy says:

    Hi Takeshi san,
    My husband and I will be visiting Japan for the first time later this month. Our itinerary is:
    4/29 late afternoon — arriving Osaka Kansai Airport. Hotel is near Namba Station.
    5/1 around noon — take train from Osaka to Kyoto. Hotel is near Kyoto Station.
    5/4 around noon — take Shinkansen train to Tokyo. Hotel is near Shinjuku Station.
    What trains should we take? Should we buy JR rail pass? How to reserve Shinkansen tickets ahead of time? I have read that I should buy bus/rail day pass for inside Kyoto, and Suica card for Tokyo?
    I am rather confused. Your kind suggestions will be much appreciated. Thanks!

  6. ultraman49
    May says:

    Hi Takeshi,

    Thank you for your prompt advise.

    I plan to visit Toyama, Kanazawa, Takayama, Shin Hotaka, Kamikochi, Tateyama Alpine Route, Shirakawago.
    I am thinking of making Toyama as my base station so that I do not need to worry about my heavy luggage.
    Day 1 – Toyama to Tateyama Alpine Route
    Day 2 – Toyama to Shirakawago
    Day 3 – Toyama to Kanazawa
    Day 4/5 – Toyama to Takayama
    Day 6 – Toyama to Shin Hotaka
    Day 7 – Toyama to Kamikochi
    Is it wise to do this way?

  7. ultraman49
    May says:

    Hi Takeshi san,

    I intend to go Toyama from Tokyo in June. Is arriving in Haneda Airport more convenience to take transport to Toyama or arriving in Narita Airport better?

    • Takeshi Shimomura, Author of JPRail.com
      Takeshi / JPRail.com says:

      Hi May,

      Haneda is closer but you have to change trains. You will take Monorail from Haneda to Hamamatsucho and take local train to Tokyo from Hamamatsucho. But you can get Tokyo from Narita by Narita Express directly. Trip time from Haneda is 30 minutes. It’s still shorter than trip from Narita for one hour. Which one is better for you, shorter trip with one transfer or longer trip with no transfer?

      Cheers,

      Takeshi / JPRail.com

  8. Doreen says:

    Hi Takeshi,
    My family of 4 will be visiting Japan in May and our tentative intinery is as follows:

    Day 1 – arrive at Narita at 3.10pm. Travel to hotel at Shinjuku and explore.

    Day 2,3,4 – Asakusa, Shibuya, Tsukjii, Roppongi, Harajuku, Ginza

    Day 5 – depart Tokyo for Hakone to stay at onsen. Will purchase Hakone free pass to explore area.

    Day 6 – depart Hakone for Kyoto. Hotel is around Kyoto station.

    Day 7,8, – explore Kyoto

    Day 9 – depart Kyoto for Osaka. Explore Osaka and Kobe.

    Day 10 – depart Osaka to Kansai Airport flight at 4.15pm.

    Could you advise if I should buy the JR pass and if not, what are the best alternatives for travel?

    Thanks in advance.

    Doreen

    • Takeshi Shimomura, Author of JPRail.com
      Takeshi / JPRail.com says:

      Hi Doreen,

      JR Pass is not your choice. I have sample itinerary which is almost same as your trip plan. Please see the link below to find more info:
      https://jprail.com/sample-itineraries/7days/sample-itinerary-of-tokyo-hakone-kyoto-and-osaka-classic-route-in-7-days.html

      Cheers,

      Takeshi / JPRail.com

      • Doreen says:

        Hi Takeshi,

        Thanks so much for your reply. However, I am very confused about the advice you gave on buying a ticket from Odawara to Kansai Airport with stopovers in Kyoto and Osaka. My question is – can we make stopovers for 3-4 days in Kyoto and 1 day in Osaka with this Odawara-Kansai ticket as long as travel is in the direction to Kansai Airport? That is – there is no limit to the amount of time spent on the stopovers?

        Thanks and appreciate the time you spent in answering our queries.

        Regards,
        Doreen

        • Takeshi Shimomura, Author of JPRail.com
          Takeshi / JPRail.com says:

          Hi Doreen,

          The valid days is varied by the distance.
          https://jprail.com/travel-informations/other-rail-passes/for-non-jr-pass-travellers-guide-to-use-jr-single-ticket-basic-rules-validity-and-stopover.html

          In this case, it’s valid for 4 days. If you stay in Kyoto for 4 days, it’s expired there. You need to buy another ticket for Kyoto to Osaka and Osaka to Kyoto separately. But even if you need to buy a ticket one by one, it’s not much different. You also can find the deal in the link below for Osaka to KIX.
          https://jprail.com/sample-itineraries/airport-access/kansai-kix/how-to-choose-the-deals-for-access-tofrom-kansai-airport.html

          Cheers,

          Takeshi / JPRail.com

          • Doreen says:

            Hi Takeshi,

            We have now almost finalised our travel plans and would appreciate your advice on the best form of travel for the 4 of us. Our itinerary and questions are as follows:

            Day 1
            Arrive at Narita Airport at 3.10pm. To travel to Shinjuku station for accommodation near Nishi-Shinjuku Station ( which is 6 mins walk away).
            Question: Is it better to purchase Skyliner + 72 hour subway pass for Y$3,500 per person or limousine+ subway pass for Y$6000 for 2 persons ( as we are a party of 4) or Keiseiki Bus Tokyo shuttle + subway 3 day pass for Y$ 2400 per person or any other mode of travel?

            Day 1,2,3 -We intend to visit the various tourist spots of Senjoji Temple, Meiji-jingu Shrine, Harajuku, Shinuya, Tsukjii Fish Market, Roppongi and do not know whether they are within walking distances or require subway/metro travel.

            Day 4.
            Leave early morning from Shinjuku Station for Hakone. Our hotel is Mt View Hotel at Sengokuhara, Hakonemachi, Ashigarashimogun, Hakone.
            Question is: Is it better to go by Romance car and have to change to bus at Hakone-Yumoto or by highway bus from Shinjuku all the way to the hotel without having to change mode of transport since the bus stops directly outside the hotel. We intend to purchase the Hakone free pass for travel within Hakone.

            Day 5
            We will depart from Hakone after breakfast to either Hakone-Yumoto or Odadwara and take the train to Kyoto. As we will be staying in Kyoto for 4 days, you have advised that it is not possible to buy the 1-way ticket to Kansai Airport with stop overs in kyoto and Osaka. As such, which is the best train to Kyoto as we will be staying at Higashishiokojicho, Pleasance Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture?

            Day 6, 7, We will be exploring Kyoto eg Fushimi Inari Shrine, Kinkakuji, Ginkakuji, Nijo Castle, path of Philosophy, Arashiyama- Sagano Bamboo Forest, Gion, Nishiki Market .
            Question: Which train/subway pass is the best for travel to these places?

            Day 8: We will leave Kyoto early in the morning and travel by train to Kobe to have lunch after which we will travel by train to Osaka. Our accommodation in Osaka is at Umeda, Nakazakicho in Kita, Osaka.
            Question: Which train or subway should we take to reach our accommodation in Osaka?

            Day 9: We will depart Osaka to Kansai Airport. Which is the best way to go from our hotel stay in Osaka?

            As this is the first time we are travelling to Japan, we are very confused and will greatly appreciate your advice.

            Thanking you in advance.

            Yours sincerely,
            Doreen

      • doreen says:

        Hi Takeshi,

        I have another question which I hope to get your advice. From our accommodation in Shinjuku to the various places of interest eg Asakusa, Harajuku, Shibuya, Roppongi, Tsukiji Market, Ueno Park, Imperial Palace – is the Tokyo metro and subway pass sufficient or do I need to purchase JR train tickets as well? I intend to buy the Skyliner ( from Narita ) with the 72 hour metro/subway pass.

  9. Eugene says:

    Hi Takeshi San
    My itinerary is as followed:

    Day 1: Arrival in Narita at 8am; heading straight to Shinjuku
    Day 2: Tokyo
    Day 3: Depart for Osaka at 10am
    Day 4 to 7: Kyoto, Kobe, Nara
    Day 8 to 11: Tokyo; Narita back home

    I’ve also purchased a 7 days JR Pass

    What’s my travelling options? Especiallt from Narita to Shinjuku?

    Cheers
    Eugene

  10. Anvesh says:

    Hi Takeshi,
    My tentative itinerary is –

    Day 1 – Arrive at Narita 4:20PM – Check in at Hostel close to Iriya station and explore the surrounding area

    Day 2 – Shibuya, Shinjuku and Harajuku

    Day 3 – Nikko (or) Mt.Fuji 5 seas (or) DisneyLand

    Day 4 – Akihabara, Asakusa, Tsukiji, Ginza

    Day 5 – Leave Hostel and Get to Hotel at Chiyoda and head out to Odaiba and surrounding areas

    Day 6 – Southern Tokyo

    Day 7 – Northern Tokyo – Ikebukuro, etc

    Day 8 – 16 = Pre booked Travel by bus to hiroshima, Hakone, Kyoto and Osaka

    Day 17 – Return to Tokyo from Osaka and spend the night and leave the following morning

    So, i would like your help regarding how to get from Narita to my hostel and how i proceed for my itinerary at tokyo, do i take any passes as per your recommendation?

    Help appreciated. Thanks!

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