Shin Osaka station guide. How to change Shinkansen, Haruka, Thunderbird and local train access to Osaka, Umeda and Namba

Conventional lines platform (front), Shinkansen terminal (back) (C) Outside view of the Shin Osaka station/Ariake

Shin-Osaka station is the place where you change to/from Shinkansen. If you travel in Osaka, you may use this station at least once. All Shikansen trains stop at this station and many limited express trains on conventional lines stop or depart from this station, Shin-Osaka.

In this post, I would like to show you some images and explain about this station. You will get the information about transfer among trains.

Overview

First of all, please see Shin-Osakai station map on JR Central website.

Shin-Osaka station is composed of four levels, Shinkansen tracks on 4th floor, fare gate and concourse on 3rd floor and conventional line’s tracks on ground floor. On 2nd floor, there are some shops and restaurants. But as long as you transfer the trains in this station, you don’t see 2nd floor.

Shin-Osaka station is one station and three minutes away from Osaka station (Umeda area). But atmosphere in Shin-Osaka is totally different from Osaka station, Umeda area. Three is no huge shopping complex around Shin-Osaka station. Don’t expect shopping and food experience around Shin-Osaka station. But mostly hotel rate is cheaper than Umeda area. It takes only 3 minutes by train. If you really care about accommodation cost, Shin-Osaka may be suitable for you.

Ticket gate/Exit

Shinkansen ticket window is located beside Shinkansen ticket gate. If you use non reserved seat by Japan Rail Pass, you don’t need anything. But if you want to book reserved seat in last minutes, you can do it here. (C) JR Shin-Osaka Station / Hyougushi

There are three ticket gates, East, South and Central on 3rd floor.

If you want to exit from conventional line’s platform, you can use East exit only. Other two exit, South and Central are located in Shinkansen concourse. You cannot access to these two exits without Shinkansen ticket. If you use Japan Rail Pass, you can go through Shinkansen concourse without any extra charge. You don’t need to exchange any Shinkansen ticket. All you have to do is showing your Japan Rail Pass at Shinkansen

There is Shinkansen ticket gate in the concourse. When you transfer to/from Shinkansen, you need to go through this gate. You must have Shinkasen ticket, Japan Rail Pass, JR West Sanyo Area Pass, JR West Sanyo-Shikoku-Kyushu Pass or JR West Kansai WIDE Area Pass to access to Shinkansen platform/concourse. JR West Kansai Area Pass do NOT cover Shinaksen trains.

Tracks and platforms

There are 8 tracks / 4 platforms for conventional lines on ground floor and 7 tracks / 4 platforms for Shinkansen on 4th floor. There are no track #1-10 in Shin-Osaka station.

Shinkansen on 4th floor

There are seven tracks, #20-#26.

Track# Name of line Destination
20-22 Sanyo Shinkansen Okayama, Hiroshima, Hakata
Kyushu Shinkansen Hiroshima, Hakata, Kumamoto, Kagoshima-Chuo
23-26 Tokaido Shinkansen Kyoto, Nagoya, Tokyo

#20 track is mostly used for the train depart from Shin-Osaka. Trains from Tokyo that go to Okayama, Hiroshima and Hakata directly (Nozomi and Hikari) depart/arrive at track #21 and #22.

Conventional lines on Ground floor

Conventional lines platforms from track #12 (C) JP Rail

You can get on Local commute train, Rapid service and limited express trains on conventional lines at track #11-18.

Track# Name of line Destination
11 Limited Express Haruka Direct train to Kansai airport via Tennoji. This train does not stop at Osaka station. Trains from Kansai airport stop at this platform too.
Limited Express Kuroshio Direct train to Shirahama, Shingu, Kii-Katsuura via Tennoji. This train does not stop at Osaka station. Trains from Shirahama, Shingu or Kii-Katsuura stop at this platform too.
12 Twilight Express Sapporo
Limited Express Thunderbird Fukui, Kanazawa, Toyama, Wakura-Onsen
Limited Express Wide View Hida Gero, Takayama (one round trip from Osaka a day)
Limited Express Wide View Shinano Matsumoto, Nagano (one round trip from Osaka a day)
■Kyoto line Special Rapid / Rapid train to Shin-Osaka, Takatsuki, Kyoto use this platform during peak hour.
13 ■Kyoto line Special Rapid / Rapid train to Shin-Osaka, Takatsuki, Kyoto
14 ■Kyoto line Local train to Shin-Osaka, Takatsuki, Kyoto
15 ■Takarazuka line, Fukuchiyama line Takarazuka, Shin-Sanda, Sasayamaguchi
■Kobe line Local train to Sannomiya, Kobe, Himeji
16 ■Kobe line Special Rapid /Rapid train to Sannomiya, Kobe, Himeji
17 ■Kobe line Special Rapid / Rapid train to Sannomiya, Kobe, Himeji use this platform during peak hour.
Limited Express Kounotori, Super Hakuto Fukuchiyama, Kinosaki-Onsen, Tottori
18 Limited Express Kounotori, Super Hakuto Fukuchiyama, Kinosaki-Onsen, Tottori, Other limited express trains to Osaka

So if you go to/from Osaka, you usually use track #13-16. If you go to Kansai airport or Nanki area, like Shirahama, Shingu, go to track #11.

Access to/from Osaka station. How many minutes is enough to transfer

It is very easy to find the platforms for Haruka, Kuroshio and Thunderbird. (C) JP Rail

If you access to/from Osaka station (Umeda area), you can take any trains on conventional lines, limited express, special rapid, rapid or local. All trains stop at Shin-Osaka and takes only 3 minutes. If you use Japan Rail Pass, technically you can take limited express for even three minutes transfer without any extra charge. But special rapid, rapid or local trains are more convenient because it is more frequent and many more passenger’s door save your time to get off the trains. Anyway it is just three minutes transfer. It is not a big issue.

In regards to transfer, minimum transfer time is 10 minutes according to JR West. I totally agree with it. But if you will plan to purchase Shinkansen ticket at Shinkansen transfer gate, you may spend another 10 minutes. If you really worry to miss the train, expect to spend another 5 minutes, total 15 minutes. It is enough.

Access to/from Namba station by Osaka Subway Midousuji line

Midousuji line can be seen from Shinkansen platform. It is subway line but it does not run underground in Shin-Osaka. Midousuji line station is located just under Shinkansen platforms.
Midousuji line can be seen from Shinkansen platform. It is subway line but it does not run underground in Shin-Osaka. Midousuji line station is located just under Shinkansen platforms.

If you go to another downtown core, Namba, Osaka Subway Midousuji line is the best way to get there. You can access to Namba by JR lines. But it is a detour and JR Namba station is not located at the center of Namba area. Midousuji line Shin-Osaka station is located at 2nd level. Shinkansen Central ticket gate is the closest to subway station. I show you how to transfer between Shinkansen and subway Midousuji line below.

If you transfer to subway from Shinkansen train, minimum transfer time is 10 minutes. But if you tranfer from conventional line trains, you might spend another 5 minutes to transfer. The fare is 270 yen. You can take JR train to Osaka and transfer to subway at Umeda station. But you can save only 40 yen. Shin-Osaka is much easier and faster to transfer.

How to transfer to/from Subway Midousuji line

Use Central exit.

2015 spring Japan trip 1280

2015 spring Japan trip 1281

Once you get out from Central exit, you will find the sign of subway on your left hand.

2015 spring Japan trip 1282

Follow the signage and go down.

2015 spring Japan trip 1285

There are many signage and just follow.

2015 spring Japan trip 1286

2015 spring Japan trip 1287

You will find subway ticket gate soon.

2015 spring Japan trip 1289

It takes 5 minutes to transfer from ticket gate to ticket gate. It is quite easy.

133 thoughts on “Shin Osaka station guide. How to change Shinkansen, Haruka, Thunderbird and local train access to Osaka, Umeda and Namba”

  1. Takashi-san,

    How are you? I am an American in need help on which train passes I should use while in the Kensai region from October 27-November 10. There are so many choices and I am doing so many different things this time. I have a few questions on parts of my trip:

    I have my ICOCCA card from last year’s trip. I don’t think there is any value on it other than the Y500 deposit.

    10/27 (Friday): KIX to Shin-Osaka (nothing else.

    Question #1: With my ICCOCA card, how much do I pay to take the Haruka Express to get to shin-osaka.

    My other question is, I am planning the following day trips in succession (starting from Shin-Osaka Station):

    11/1: Shin-Osaka to Himeiji (see the castle in morning)-Himeji-Kobe (want to tram to take city views, visit chinatown, see the starbucks, go to suspension bridge tower and if I have time go to Meriken Park)-return to Shin-Osaka
    11/2: Shin-Osaka to Nara (spend day in Nara)-return to Shin-11/3: Shin-Osaka to
    11/4: Shin-Osaka to Kii Katsuura Station (see Nachi Falls mid day and eat lots of Toro and Uni in restaurant near Katuura Station?
    11/5: Kii Katsuura to Kyoto Station.

    Question #2:

    From 11/1 to 11/5 is the Kensai Wide Area Pass worth buying?

  2. Hi Takeshi,

    I am arriving from Tokyo on Hikari shinkansen and only have 4 minutes to transfer to Limited Express Haruka to KIX. I purchased ticket at the ticket office using JapanRail Pass. Am I correct that I arrive at track 21/22 and need to run to track 11? Is 4 minutes enough? i checked the online ticket website and it showed the same recommendation as the ticket counter, but I am afraid the time is too short to transfer tracks! What do you think?

    1. Hi Richard,

      It will be very challenging. Shinkansen platform is quite long. You need to run and you must find the right direction. Honestly 4 minutes is very tough for me. If I were you, I take earlier Hikari or later Haruka.

      Cheers,

      Takeshi / JPRail.com

  3. Hi Takeshi,

    I bought Shinkansen Tickets from JR Tokai for my trip to Tokyo on Thursday, May 19 at 3:58 pm. What Platform will the train be departing from? I will be coming from the Kaiyukan area so I will start by taking the subway from Osakako Station to Shin-Osaka Station.

  4. Hi Takeshi,

    I will be taking Midosuji line from Shinsaibashi to Shin-Osaka and then taking the JR Special Rapid Service for YASU to Kyoto using JR pass.
    May I know how to transfer to take the JR Specical Rapid Service?

    Thank you

    Jojo

  5. Hi Takeshi,

    I will be arrived from Kansai Airport using Ltd Haruka and already exchange my JR pass, if I want to use shinkansen (Hikari) to Tokyo what should I do after arrived, what floor and platform do I need to go.

    Do I need to reserved seat in the ticket counter and is it accessible due to I’m travelling with my family (2 children) and bring several large luggage.

    regards,
    Afif H

    1. Hi Afif H,

      You can move conventional line platform on ground floor to Shinkansen platform on 3rd floor. There are lots of signage and you cannot miss it.
      https://jprail.com/travel-informations/travel-tips/signage-and-announcement-in-the-station-and-train.html

      You can reserve tickets for Shinkansen in advance, like Kansai airport station. I usually complete to book for all trains when I exchange JR pass.

      Please see the link below about luggage.
      https://jprail.com/travel-informations/travel-tips/baggage/managing-luggage-how-to-carry-your-baggage-on-board-and-how-to-store-your-baggage-at-the-station.html

      Cheers,

      Takeshi / JPRail.com

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