Tokyo Metropolitan District Pass (Tokyo Tokunai Pass), good choice for sightseeing in Tokyo.

Rail pass for residents
Yamanote line is the busiest train service in Japan.
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JR's Yamanote line (left) and Tokyo Metro (right)
JR’s Yamanote line (left) and Tokyo Metro (right)

There are many deals available in Tokyo. Tokyo Metropolitan District Pass is one of these deals. In this post, I would like to show you how to use this pass and compare with subway deals.

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Price and validity

Price is 760 yen for one day. Child rate is 380 yen which applies to 6 to 11 years old. Child who is 5 years old or younger is free of charge.

One day means from the first train to the last train. Most of JR trains start to run around 5:00 am to 00:30.

e.g.
If you purchase this pass on April 27, you still can take the train after 00:00 on April 28.
But even if you purchase this pass at 0:01 on April 28, you cannot use this ticket for the first train on April 28.

This pass can allow you to take only local or rapid train. If you want to take Shinkansen, only base fare will be covered by this pass. But you have to pay express surcharge. But in this area, only Tokyo-Ueno and Tokyo-Shinagawa are covered. Even if you take local train, it takes around 10 minutes. There is no reason to take Shinkansen in the area of this pass.

How to purchase and use

You can put the ticket in the automatic ticket gate. Don' t forget to pick it up!
You can put the ticket in the automatic ticket gate. Don’ t forget to pick it up!

You can purchase at Midori no Madoguchi (reservation window), View Plaza (JR East’s travel center) and reservation ticket vending machine. When you purchase it, you can choose the date when you want to use. The ticket can be purchased one month prior to the date to use. But it is quite easy to purchase. It is no problem to purchase on the spot.

Coverage area

Please see the map below.

Coverage area map (Click to enlarge)
Coverage area map (Click to enlarge)

Green solid lines are covered by this pass. Tokyo, Akihabara, Ueno, Ikebukuro, Shinjuku, Shibuya and Shinagawa are covered. Even though Harajuku is not shown in the map above, it is in coverage area. And Ginza can be accessed from Yurakucho by walk. Yurakucho is not shown in the map above either. But it is covered and only one station away from Tokyo.

So these following “Big Names” in Tokyo cannot be accessed by this pass.

In the spots above, Odaiba, TDL and Ghibli cannot be accessed by the subway either. So if you intend to visit Asakusa, Skytree and Tsukiji in same day, subway pass is the best and only choice. However if you don’t visit these spots or visit one of these places, this deal, Tokyo Metropolitan District Pass (Tokyo Tokunai Pass) may be a right choice.

If you will use JR pass, JR East Pass or Tokyo Wide Pass, these passes cover this area. Tokyo Tokunai Pass is not required.

Compare with subway deals

Tokyo Subway Ticket is sold at 800 yen for 24 hours. 48 hours and 72 hours are also available and price per day is getting cheaper:

Tokyo Subway Ticket (Tokyo Metro official site)

Actually Tokyo subway system covers more than JR train in Tokyo.

Guide to take trains in Tokyo. How to choose the best deal and the best route by train to get the major spots?

And also Tokyo Subway Ticket offers 24 hours period.

e.g.
If you start using Tokyo Subway Ticket at 17:00 on 24th March, it is valid until 16:58 on 25th March.

Meanwhile Tokyo Tokunai Pass is valid for one day. It is valid from midnight to midnight. It doesn’t matter what time you start using it.

Tokyo Subway Ticket is affordable and convenient. However Tokyo Subway has many lines and it makes you confused.

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I understand that we can go almost anywhere in Tokyo by subway but it is very hard to find the best and the fastest route. There are some places in Tokyo where you cannot access by JR trains in Tokyo. But JR trains network is very simple, faster than subway and go directly. If you intend to visit the places on Yamanote line, such as Shinjuku, Shibuya, Ueno, Akihabara, Yurakucho (Ginza), Tokyo Tokunai Pass is much easier to use.

Check your itinerary and if you can get the place where you want to go by JR trains, Tokyo Tokunai Pass is better deal.

How much we need to take trains to get worth

The following table shows you the fare for major stations.

stationTokyoShinjukuShinagawaAkihabaraUenoIkebukuro
Tokyo200170140160200
Shinjuku200200170200160
Shinagawa170200170200260
Akihabara140170170140200
Ueno160200200140170
Ikebukuro200160260200170

As you see, fares in Tokyo is quite reasonable. If you use this deal, you have to make 4 to 5 trips. Otherwise single ticket is cheaper.

Trip to outside of coverage area

If you add fare, you can make a trip to outside of coverage area.

e.g.
To Tokyo Disney Land and Sea
Maihama where is the gateway station to Tokyo Disney Land and Sea is just one station away from border station, Kasairinkaikoen station. The additional fare is 140 yen one way. If you stay in Shinjuku, regular fare for Shinjuku – Maihama is 390 yen. At this point, total fare is 780 yen and it is much cheaper than Tokyo Metropolitan District Pass (Tokyo Tokunai Pass) at 750 yen + additional fares 280 yen. But if you make some more trips after/before visiting Tokyo Disney Land, pass may be cheaper.

To Ghibli museum
Mitaka is two stations away from border station, Nishiogikubo. Additional fare is 160 yen one way. If you go to Mitaka from Ueno or Shinagawa, one way regular fare is 390 yen. It is same thing as trip to Tokyo Disney Land. If you intend to use the pass before/after visiting Ghibli museum, this deal may be cheaper than total fares.

My itinerary

When I used this deal, I use the following segments.

Akihabara – Kinshicho 160 yen
Kinshicho – Akihabara 160 yen
Akihabara – Shinjuku 170 yen
Shinjuku – Shinagawa 200 yen
Shinagawa – Tokyo 170 yen
Tokyo – Akihabara 140 yen
Total 900 yen

I had several reasons to use this deal.

  1. Hotel was closed to JR Akihabara station.
  2. I need the direct transfer between Tokyo and Akihabara.
  3. Subway do not have direct line on this section.There is no subway station in Shinagawa.

Tokyo Skytree was only outside of coverage area. Even though I took Tokyo Metro Hanzoumon line and paid 170 yen one way, this deal was the best option for me.

Comments

  1. david says:

    Hello i plan to go to Choshi, Kimitsu Hachoji and Yokohama. Can i go in these areas with the tokunai pass ?

    Regards

  2. Aleli Salazar says:

    Hi Takeshi
    I’m seeking your help please in working out what passes we should buy where we can save and maximise its value. We are a family of 3 adults and 1 child, staying near Akebonobashi station.

    1) Haneda Intl – Akebonobashi – Tokyo
    2) Odaiba
    3) Asakusa – Ueno-Okachimachi – Shinjuku
    4) Ghibli Museum – Nakano Broadway – Akihabara
    5) Shibuya – Harajuku
    6) Lake Kawaguchiko (we might activate JR pass for this, as we are travelling to Osaka/Kyoto the next day)

    I am overwhelmed with all of passes available and your assistance would be greatly appreciated!

    Many thanks
    Aleli

  3. AKMAL says:

    Hi, appreciate your assistance to advise the most practical pass for my journey below;
    I’ll stay at Ueno by the way.

    Day 1 : NRT – Ueno
    Day 2 : Tokyo city trip
    Day 3 : Tokyo city trip
    Day 4 : Galayuzawa
    Day 5 : Fuji (overnite)
    Day 6 : Fuji (back to Ueno)
    Day 7 : Tokyo City trip. To Disneyland (overnite)
    Day 8 : Disneyland (overnite)
    Day 9 : Disneyland – NRT

    thanks

  4. Nur fatin nazira says:

    Hi Takeshi san!
    Can you advice me which one (Jr pass/Jr tokunai/subway) better for my group trip (10 people)
    Day1 – Arrived haneda airport, i will stay at magome, after check in i will go to shibuya & shinjuku
    Day2 – Harajuku
    Day3 – Gala yuzawa
    Day4 – Mt. Fuji
    Day5 – Tsukiji fish market & Asakusa
    Day6 – Disneyland
    Day7 – Free & easy ( go back haneda airport)
    Thank you for you help.

  5. ERICA says:

    Hello,
    My Hotel is located in CHIBA EKI, and I saw that TOKUNAI TOKYO PASS just coved from KOIWA EKI. I intend to use SUICA within areas that it´s not covered by TOKUNAI TOKYO PASS. So, do I have to get off the train at KOIWA once to not be pay twice (TOKUNAI PASS + SUICA)? Or how can I do?

  6. Tonny says:

    Hi Takeshi,
    If i want go to mitsui outlet outlet park from ikebukuro, can i use tokunai pass? Thank you

    • Hi Tonny,

      There are several Mitsui outlet park around Tokyo but all these outlet are located outside downtown Tokyo. Tokunai Pass does not cover these places. Regular fare ticket is the best choice.

      Cheers,

      Takeshi / JPRail.com

  7. Helen says:

    Takeshi-san,

    We will be in Tokyo for a week but our hotel will be in Disney area (Maihama station). Depending on where we go for the day, we are either buying the Tokyo Metropolitan District Pass or the Tokyo Subway Pass. Please let me know if this is not a good idea.

    My question is, if we have the Tokyo Metropolitan District Pass, do we have to get off at Kasai-Rinkai-Koen station (every time we travel from Tokyo) to purchase the additional fare? Or can I just buy the additional fare (to Maihama) from the origin station without stopping at Kasai-Rinkai-Koen?

    Thank you for your help.

  8. Tim says:

    Hi,Takeshi
    I will buy Tokyo Subway pass.Dose it cover Yokohama and Narita Airport.Can please confirm it.Thankyou very much.

  9. Benny Gunawan says:

    Hi Takeshi,

    Can I use Tokunai pass from/to Mikawashima Station?

    Thanks in advanve

  10. Yuvi says:

    Hi…Takeshi,
    Can I use Tokyo Metropolitan District Pass with itinerary below:

    1. Shinagawa – nippori – mikawashima
    2. Mikawashima – nippori – ishikawacho
    3. Ishikawacho – oimachi
    4. Nishi nippori – nippori – mikawashima

    Thanks in advance

    • Hi Yuvi,

      Ishikawacho is not in Tokyo. It’s in Yokohama. So when you go to Ishikawacho, you have to pay for Kamata to/from Ishikawacho or Ishikawacho to/from Nishi-Oi which is 300- 400 yen extra for one way.

      Other routes are in the coverage area.

      Cheers,

      Takeshi / JPRail.com

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