Where and How to buy JR Pass: JR Pass user guide, how to use Japan Rail Pass to its maximum.

Rail pass for visitors
New look of JR Pass (Year 2018) (C) JR Rail

Japan Rail Pass (a.k.a. JR Pass) covers all JR lines throughout Japan. This is only rail pass that covers throughout Japan. If you travel even a round trip to Osaka from Tokyo, the price of 7-day pass almost equal to normal fare. I think this pass gives the greatest deal to the travellers who wants to travel in Japan.

Japan Rail Pass Official site is very informative. But some points are not clear. And it does not show you how to get the worth of this pass.

In this post, I tell you about this pass as simple as possible. I compare a regular fare and JR pass, how to choose the retailer, additional charge and many more.

How to buy JR Pass

You have four ways to buy JR Pass.

Purchasing at the authorized dealer

Only authorized dealers are allowed to sell JR Pass. You can find the agent list at this page of Japan Rail Pass official site.

These following companies are major wholeselers:

  • JTB (the biggest travel agency in Japan)
  • NTA (Nippon Travel Agency / third biggest and the oldest travel agency in Japan)
  • KNT (Kintetsu International / same group as Kintetsu Railways. Second biggest travel agency)
  • Top Tour (Same group as Tobu Railway)
  • JALPAK (Same group as Japan Airlines)

You can find many company names on the official website, but most of them are subcontractors who purchase and sell passes from the above major wholesalers.

JR Pass online purchase from wholesalers and subcontractors

In these days, many companies have a contract with these above distributors. And an online sales by wholesalers and subcontractors have been very active these days. In particular, many subcontractors specialize in JR Passes, and we actively sell them by using their websites to send JR Passes to countries around the world.

You can find as many online retailers as you want by googling with the JR Pass. To find out if these companies are official companies, you may check the agent list at the link above. If it’s a company listed there, you can buy a JR Pass from it.

ACP Rail is one of the reliable online retailer because they deal with JR group company, JR East directly. This company is the official retailer of JR East. Their online purchasing site is connected with JR East official site.

Japan Rail Pass online purchasing at ACP Rail

JR Pass online purchase from the official site

Until now, online sales have been mostly done by subcontractors, but the JR Pass official website has been renewed on June 1, 2020, and you can purchase directly from the official website.

However, the price will be higher than the agent price. As I will explain later, the JR Pass can be purchased now even after arrival in Japan, and the online sales price on the official website will be the same as the sales price in Japan.

7-day ordinary pass
Agent price JPY 29,650
Official website online price JPY 33,610

If you buy a pass from the agent’s site, an exchange order will be sent to you by mail, so you will need to pay the shipping fee, but even if you take this into consideration, the agent price will be much cheaper.

However the online seat reservation is available on only JR Pass official site. You can book a seat online before you go with peace of mind. If you buy the JR Pass at the travel agent, you cannot book a seat online.

Please see another post below to find the detailed information on the Japan Rail Pass official online reservation:

In my opinon, if you plan to visit Japan in the busy season, such as the year-end/New Year holidays, you may buy it at the official site.

Purchaing JR pass in Japan

Currently you can purchase JR pass in Japan until the end of March, 2021. Please see the link below to find the details:

Official announcement about JR pass by JR group (PDF)

If you forget to buy it before you go, or you will find your trip plan after you arrive in Japan, you can buy the JR pass after you arrve in Japan.

Types and prices

There are two types, Green and Ordinary, and three duration, 7, 14 and 21-day. And the price varies depending on the agent price and the official website price/domastic sales price in Japan.

Click to view large

The differences between the official site/sales in Japan prices and the agent prices are shown in red. The sales price in Japan and the official site are 10 to 12% higher than the agent prices.

When you purchase it, the rates are adjusted by your country’s currency.

Tokaido Shinkansen
If you have a round trip to Kyoto from Narita airport by the Tokaido Shinkansen and Narita Express, you can get the worth of 7 days JR pass.

This pass is eligible for a train, a few JR bus and a ferry services which are provided by Japan Railways Group with a few exceptions. I will explain these exceptions later.

In my opinion, JR Pass is most unbeatable deal if you travel in some of regions of Japan. There are many kinds of the rail passes in Japan, such as JR East Pass, JR Hokkaido Pass, JR Kyushu Pass and many more. But JR Pass is only rail pass that covers throughout Japan. And of course it covers both Tokyo and Kyoto. But if you need the detail information about other passes, please access to the list of the train pass. I wrote about many other rail passes in the posts.

How to find that you can get the worth of JR pass. Tips for using JR pass efficiently.

Once you decide the first day of use, you have to complete your trip in the fixed day. If you intend to use 7-day JR pass and stay in Japan for 7 days or less, you can start using it right after you arrive in Japan. However if you stay in Japan for the longer period than Japan Rail Pass duration, you have to find which JR pass you should buy and which day you should start using it.

Airport access

You can take JR trains at Narita airport, Kansai airport and New Chitose airport. These airports are covered by JR pass. And Haneda airport is connected to downtown Tokyo by Tokyo Monorail. This is covered by JR pass too. Please see the table below how much the fare of these airport access:

Shinagawa, Shinjuku
2,820 yen
3,190 yen
4,290 yen
Hamamatsucho500 yen
KansaiLimited Express
2,230 yen
2,850 yen
3,370 yen
Rapid AirportSapporo
1,590 yen
2,300 yen

*All fare include the base fare and the reserved seat fee.

Other airports, such as Chubu (Nagoya), Fukuoka are not covered by JR pass. You cannot start using JR pass right after arrival in these airports and the additional fare is required to take the other transportation to get to the nearest JR station first.

Using JR pass in Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, Sapporo

If you start using JR pass after arrival in Narita, Haneda, Kansai or New Chitose, you will stay in Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto or Sapporo. You can use JR Pass to take the JR local trains in these cities. But it is not very efficient to use JR pass for sightseeing inside these cities. Because the train fare is not big enough to help getting the worth.

Please see the one way fare for the major segments in these cities in the table below:

SegmentOne way base fare
Tokyo to Shinjuku200 yen
Tokyo to Yokohama470 yen
Osaka to JR-Namba190 yen
Osaka to Kyoto560 yen
Osaka to Nara800 yen
Osaka to Sannomiya (Kobe)410 yen
Kyoto to Saga-Arashiyama240 yen
Kyoto to Inari (Fushii Inari)140 yen
Sapporo to Otaru640 yen

As you see the table above, the train fare in these cities are inexpensive. It does not help to get the worth of JR pass. If you can get the worth by the other trip(s), you can use JR pass in these cities. But it is not recommended to use it in the cities.

If you intend to start using JR Pass right after arrival in the airport but you will stay in one of these cities, please think again when you should start using JR Pass.

I explain about how to use JR Pass in Tokyo, Osaka and Kyoto in these following posts:

The nearest place to get the worth of JR pass 7-day from Tokyo, Nagoya and Osaka

You may have heard that you can get the worth of 7-day JR Pass by Tokyo to Osaka round trip. It is true. The round trip fare and the Shinkansen seat fee are slightly less than 7-day JR Pass price. If you use JR Pass for the airport to Tokyo (or Osaka), and/or making some local train trips in the city, you can get the worth of it.

You have to use JR pass for a long train ride as much as you can, such as Tokyo to Osaka round trip. I would like to show you not only Tokyo to Osaka round trip but also more trips to get the worth of 7-day JR Pass. You can find the nearest place to get the worth of 7-day JR Pass from Tokyo, Nagoya and Osaka.

7-day pass is sold at 29,110 yen. If one way base fare and the reserved seat fee are more than 14,560 yen or more, you can get the worth of 7-day pass by only one round trip.

From Tokyo

As the map above, these following round trips fares are higher than the price of 7-day JR pass.

  • The round trip to Shin-Kobe
  • The round trip to Morioka
  • The round trip to Komatsu
  • The round trip to Takayama

Shin-Kobe is one station away from Shin-Osaka on the Shinkansen. As I mentioned above, if you use JR Pass to make a few local train trips, you can get the worth by the round trip to Shin-Osaka.

Komatsu is a bit away from Kanazawa. It is same thing as the round trip to Shin-Kobe. You can get the worth of 7-day pass by the round trip to Kanazawa and some local train trips.

You also can find some more information in my Youtube movie:

From Osaka

As the map above, these following round trips are enough to get the worth of 7-day JR pass.

  • The round trip to Omiya
  • The round trip to Ueda (via Kanazawa)
  • The round trip to Hakata
  • The round trip to Tsuwano

If you go east from Osaka, Omiya is the nearest destination to get the worth of 7-day JR pass. Omiya is just outside Tokyo. But as I mentioned above from Tokyo to Shin-Kobe, you can get the worth of it by Osaka to/from Tokyo round trip and some local trips.

Ueda is one station away from Nagano by Hokuriku Shinkansen. You also can get the worth of 7-day JR pass by round trip to Nagano and some local train trip.

If you go west, the round trip to Hakata (Fukuoka) is okay to get the worth. You also can get the worth of it by the round trip to Tsuwano too.

You also can find some more information in my Youtube movie:

From Nagoya

As the map above, these following round trips are enough to get the worth of 7-day JR pass.

  • The round trip to Utsunomiya
  • The round trip to Tokuyama

If you go east from Nagoya, the round trip to Tokyo is not enough to get the worth. Utsunomiya is the nearest destination to get the worth of it. Utsunomiya is the gateway to Nikko. If you intend to visit there, you can get the worth of it easily.

If you go west, the round trip to Tokuyama is the nearest destination to get the worth of 7-day JR pass. Tokuyama is two stations away from Hiroshima on the Sanyo Shinkansen line. If you make a round trip to Miyajima from Hiroshima by the local train and take the ferry to Miyajima, the total fare is very close to JR Pass 7-day price.

Tokyo to Osaka (or versa) one way trip is not enough to get the worth of even 7-day JR Pass.

If you will have only one way trip between Tokyo and Osaka, the regular fare ticket is your choice. I wrote about using single ticket at the post, For non JR pass travellers. Guide to use JR single ticket, basic rules, validity and stopover.

You also can find some sample itineraries in the links below:

Tokyo – Osaka one way trip sample itinerary

Osaka, Kyoto and Tokyo one way sample itinerary

Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka one way sample itinerary

The faretable of the major segments

I would like to show you the fares for your convenience. If you have a multi-city travel, the fare may be cheaper. But you can use this faretable to find that you can get the worth of JR Pass or not. These following fares are based on the Shinkansen and/or daytime limited express train reserved seat fee, and the base fare.

Sapporo26,820 yen37,100 yen34,350 yen
Hakodate23,420 yen33,700 yen31,060 yen
Aomori17,350 yen27,370 yen25,210 yen
Akita17,800 yen27,820 yen25,440 yen
Sendai11,200 yen22,620 yen20,240 yen
Niigata10,570 yen22,310 yen19,930 yen
Nikko5,580 yen18,530 yen16,030 yen
Echigo-Yuzawa6,670 yen19,500yen17,110 yen
Nagano8,200 yen11,790 yen7,330 yen
Odawara3,470 yen12,620 yen8,940 yen
Nagoya10,880 yen6,930 yen
Takayama14,710 yen10,600 yen6,030 yen
Toyama12,730 yen9,430 yen11,350 yen
Kanazawa14,120 yen7,650 yen8,020 yen
Osaka14,140 yen6,350 yen
Kinosaki Onsen16,340 yen5,600 yen9,520 yen
Okayama16,820 yen6,600 yen10,870 yen
Hiroshima18,560 yen10,810 yen13,810 yen
Fukuoka (Hakata)22,330 yen15,580 yen18,020 yen
Kumamoto26,500 yen18,540 yen22,080 yen
Kagoshima29,860 yen21,900 yen25450 yen

Please use hyperdia to find the fare for other segments.

Hyperdia perfect guide

How to choose Green seat pass or Ordinary seat pass

Green seat on Super Ozora by 283 series (C) Sonic Rail Garden
Green seat on Super Ozora by 283 series in Hokkaido (C) Sonic Rail Garden

I explain about Green and Ordinary class seats in the movie below:

Green seat is like business class seat. There are some higher class than Green class, such as, Gran class, Premium Green calss. But these are not covered by JR pass at all.

If you take Gran Class by JR Pass, both Ordinary pass and Green pass cover only a basic fare only. You have to pay a limited express surcharge and Gran class seat fee. Please see the post,Japan Rail Pass can be used for Hayabusa to get details.

Advantages of Green class seat are space and atmosphere. Green class seat is much more spacious and quieter than ordinary seat. Shinkansen and most of Limited Express have this class. Even some local trains, such as Rapid trains in greater Tokyo area have Green seat too. Please read one of my post, Worthwhile buying Japan Rail Pass Green Pass?. I explained the details about Green class seat in this post. I hope it may help you to decide which pass you purchase.

If you are sensitive about your budget, the ordinary class is fine. I am sure you will be satisfied with the ordinary class seat too. It is way better than economy seat on the flight. My height is 6’1″ (184 cm). But the leg space at the ordinary class seat is totally fine for me.

How to exchange

JR Pass exchange order

You will receive “Exchange Order” at the time of purchasing of JR Pass if you buy a pass at an official vendor or their online service. It is not the actual pass but the voucher. You have to exchange for the actual pass after you arrive in Japan. The validity of exchange order is three months from the date of issue. The pass never be sold out.

If you buy the JR Pass at the official JR Pass reservation site, you will recieve a reservation number. You will not receive any papers. It is easier to handle.

Exchange place
English signage of JR exchange office at Tokyo station

You can exchange and receive an actual pass at the designated stations. Narita airport, Kansai airport, Tokyo, Shinagawa, Osaka, Kyoto and more than 40 major stations throughout Japan are on the list. Please find the list of the exchange places in the link below:

JR Pass exchange and sales office list, Japan Rail Pass official site.

If you want to buy the JR Pass after you arrive in Japan, you can buy it at the stations on this sales office list.

When you turn in, go to the exchange place and tell the staff that you will exchange JR pass. You will receive the application form and fill in. After that, you will proceed the window and show your passport and exchange order to get the actual pass.

When you turn in the pass, you can choose the first day of use within one month from this day.

If you exchange a pass on June 1st, you can choose the starting date from June 1st to 30th.

The start and finish dates will be stamped on your pass. Once the dates are stamped, you cannot change it.

Definition of one day

It means 00:00 to 23:59.

If you start to use 7 days pass on April 1st, your pass is expired at 23:59 on April 7th.

There are an exception. If you are on board at 23:59 on the last day, you still can continue to travel by train. Your pass cover until you get off the train. After you get off the train, as long as you don’t exit the station, your pass still cover basic fare.

Day 7 Tokyo 22:53 (Limited Express Tokiwa) 00:24 Mito

Even though your arrival time is 00:24 on 8th day, this trip is covered until you get Mito by JR pass
If you do not exit Mito station, you still can take local train because the base fare is covered by JR pass until you exit the station

Day 7 Tokyo 22:53 (Limited Express Tokiwa) 00:24 Mito
Day 8 Mito 00:33 (local train) 00:39 Katsuta

You can take a local train only. You cannot take any limited express trains after you get off it at Mito.


JR Pass covers most of the railway service and the ferry service by Japan railways. You can go almost anywhere throughout Japan except Okinawa. (Any JR companies do not offer a train service in Okinawa.) Please see the Japan Railway’s route map and the Shinkansen (bullet train) route map in the links below:

Nationwide JR route map, Japan Rail Pass official site
Shinkansen (bullet train) route map, Japan Rail Pass official site

But there are a few exceptions when you use JR pass. I would like to show you which services are NOT covered by Japan Rail Pass.

Nozomi and Mizuho on the Tokaido, the Sanyo and the Kyushu Shinkansen lines

The Tokaido-Sanyo Shinkansen runs between Tokyo, Nagoya, Kyoto, Shin-Osaka, Hiroshima and Hakata.

I think this is the biggest thing that you have to know.

Nozomi is the fastest and most frequent train service on the Tokaido-Sanyo Shinkansen between Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka, Hiroshima and Hakata. Mizuho is the fastest train between Shin-Osaka and Kagoshima-Chuo. JR Pass is NOT valid for these trains. Even a basic fare to take Nozomi and Mizuho are not covered by JR Pass at all. If you take Nozomi or Mizuho, JR Pass does not help you at all. You have to pay a full fare beside JR pass.

JR pass covers Hikari between Tokyo and Shin-Osaka, and Sakura between Shin-Osaka and Kagoshima-Chuo which are the second fastest trains. The difference between Hikari and Nozomi are the following:

Trip time between Tokyo and Shin Osaka — 3 hours by Hikari / 2.5 hours by Nozomi
Frequency — 2 trips of Hikari per hour / 5 to 6 trips of Nozomi per hour
*There are some more trips of both Hikari and Nozomi in a peak hour.

Please refer one of my post, Tokaido-Sanyo Shinkansen to get the details abut the difference between Nozomi and Hikari.

Mizuho is the fastest train on the Sanyo Shinkansen and the Kyushu Shinkansen. Sakura is the second fastest but Sakura runs more than Mizuho. You cannot take Mizuho by JR Pass but this is not an issue.

All Shinkansen trains on the Tohoku, the Hokkaido, the Akita, the Yamagata, the Joetsu and the Hokuriku Shinkansen are covered by JR Pass fully.

Gran Class of Tohoku, Hokuriku and Hokkaido Shinkansen

The seat of Gran class (C) Asacyan (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

JR Pass covers Tohoku, Hokkaido and Hokuriku Shinkansen trains fully. Gran class that is the highest class seat is available on these Shinkansen lines. This is a higher class than Green class. If you take this Gran class, both Japan Rail Pass Ordinary and even Green cover a base fare only. You need to pay all amount of surcharge beside JR Pass. This extra charge is not the difference between Green class and Gran class. You must pay Gran class full amount fee.

Delux Green on JR Kyushu trains

Some limited express trains in Kyushu have Delux Green Class. If you take this class, you have to pay both Limited Express surcharge and Delux Green surcharge. Even Green Pass does not cover both surcharge.

Green Private Compartment

Green compartment on Super View Odoriko (C) Sonic Rail Garden

These following trains have Green seat compartment.

If you use this type of seat by Japan Rail Pass, your party must be 4 persons because it is based on 4 person. If you use this by 3 persons or less, you have to pay surcharge for insufficiency.

The overnight train and sleeper car

There are only two scheduled overnight trains in Japan now. Those are Sunrise Seto and Sunrise Izumo. If you use a compartment on these trains, JR pass covers only a base fare. However this train has the ordinary class which is called, “Nobi Nobi seat”. This ordinary class seat is covered by JR pass fully. Please see the links below to find more information:
Sunrise Izumo (Tokyo – Izumoshi)
Sunrise Seto (Tokyo – Takamatsu)

Trains run through Non JR lines

Some of limited express trains go through Non JR lines. You have to pay some extra for the section where your train goes on Non JR line. Because Japan Rail Pass cover only JR lines. The following list shows you the trains which go through Non JR lines. Please refer each train’s page to get the details about the extra charge.

Bus services

There are eight bus companies in JR Bus Group. But these bus companies and JR’s railway company, which is now divided into seven, were formerly state-owned, but became a separate organization with the privatization, and it is called the JR group.

These eight bus companies operate local bus services and highway bus services. But Japan Rail Pass covers a few local bus services only.

JR’s local bus services are a sort of commute service. I pick up some lines for the tourist.

Japan Rail Pass may cover some more bus services. But even official site does not provide any detailed information. As far as I know, I can confirm that JR Pass covers only these bus services at this point.

Ferry Service

Miyajima ferry service is operated between Miyajimaguchi and Miyajima. Japan Rail Pass is valid for this route. Miyajima is UNESCO world heritage site and one of the most popular destination for foreign travellers. This ferry cruise is very short trip. It takes only 10 minutes. Please refer one of my post, How to get Miyajima to get the details about Miyajima.

JR Kyushu operates the international ferry service between Hakata and Busan (Korea) But this is NOT covered by Japan Rail Pass.

Other train services

Japan Rail Pass does not cover any NON JR train services, such as the subways (Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka, Nagoya, Sapporo, Yokohama, Sendai, Fukuoka), other train services by private companies, city bus services, local bus services and ferry services. The following list shows you major train services that Japan Rail Pass does not cover.

  • Sapporo Subway
  • Sendai Subway
  • Tokyo Subway
  • Yokohama Subway
  • Keihin Kyuko Railway (a.k.a. Keikyu, Shinagawa-Haneda-Yokohama)
  • Keisei Railway (Narita airport-Chiba-Ueno)
  • Tobu Railway (Asakusa-Nikko/Knugawa Onsen)
  • Odakyu Railway (Shinjuku-Hakone/Enoshima)
  • Izu Kyuko Railway (Ito-Shimoda)
  • Fuji Kyuko Railway (Otsuki-Kawaguchiko)
  • Nagoya Railway (a.k.a. Meitetsu, Chubu airport-Nagoya-Gifu)
  • Nagoya Subway
  • Kyoto Subway
  • Osaka Subway
  • Nankai Railway (Namba-Kansai airport/Koyasan/Wakayama)
  • Kintetsu Railway (Namba-Nara/Kyoto/Ise/Nagoya)
  • Hankyu Railway (Kobe-Umeda-Kawaramachi,Kyoto)
  • Keihan Railway (Yodoyabashi-Sanjo,Kyoto)
  • Hanshin Railway, Sanyo Railway (Umeda/Namba-Kobe-Himeji)
  • Fukuoka Subway
  • Nishitetsu Railway (Tenjin-Dazaifu)

Tokyo Monorail between Hamamatsucho (Tokyo) and Haneda airport is not JR train but this is owned by JR East and it is covered by Japan Rail Pass.

The following trains and segments are non JR lines. But those are covered by JR Pass.

  • Local and rapid trains on Aoimori Railway between Hachinohe and Aomori. But you cannot make a stopover except Hachinohe, Noheji and Aomori
  • Local and rapid trains on Ainokaze Toyama Railway between Toyama and Takaoka. But you cannot make a stopover except Toyama and Takaoka (after March 14, 2015)
  • Any trains on IR Ishikawa Railway between Kanazawa and Tsubata. But you cannot make a stopover except Kanazawa and Tsubata. There are direct trains from Kanazawa or Osaka to Wakura Onsen. These trains are go through this segment and then go on JR Nanao line. If you take these trains, extra charge is not required on top of JR Pass.

How to use JR pass in major cities and tourist spots

You can get most places in Japan by JR pass. JR pass covers most of JR trains which include Shinkansen, limited express trains, and other rapid commute trains and local trains in the cities.

But as I explained above, JR pass does not cover Non JR trains, subways and city bus. I also would like to explain the coverage by major places and you can find the detailed coverage of JR pass.


Subway, tram (street car) and city bus are not covered.
Subway and tram route map

You can walk to get Odori Park or Clock tower from Sapporo station if you want. But subway is better way.


Tram and city bus are not covered. You need to pay extra to get some tourist spots, such as Hakodate mountain.


You can take Tohoku Shinkansen to get Utsunomiya and take Nikko line local train to Nikko. All trips to Nikko is covered. Please see the link below to find more information:

How to access to Nikko from Tokyo. There are three ways from Tokyo, Shinjuku and Asakusa.

But JR pass does not cover any local transportation, such as a local bus in Nikko area.


You can take any local trains in Tokyo to access to many places. But some of places cannot be accessed by JR pass, such as Asakusa, Tsukiji market, Tokyo Skytree. Please see the post below to find the detailed information:

You also can access to/from both Narita airport and Haneda airport. JR pass covers Narita Express and Airport Rapid train to/from Narita. Tokyo Monorail is covered by JR pass to/from Haneda airport.

Lake Kawaguchi

You can use JR pass to get Otsuki but you have to pay extra for taking Fuji Kyuko railway from Otsuki to Kawaguchiko station. Please see the link below to find more information:

Japan Railways is the best way to access Mt. Fuji? How much can we use Japan Rail Pass to go to Mt. Fuji?


You can get Odawara by Shinkansen but after arrival Odawara, JR pass does not help you. Please see the link below to find more information:

How to access Hakone from Tokyo. Compare Japan Railway and Odakyu lines


Subway and other Non JR trains, such as Meitetsu railway is not covered. You need to pay for access to/from Chubu airport (Centrair).

Chubu (Nagoya) airport transportation guide. Find info about airport station and access to Nagoya
Transportation Bureau, City of Nagoya

Snow Monkey Park in Nagano

You can get Nagano by JR pass but you have to pay for bus and/or train to get Snow Monkey Park. Please see the link below to find more information:

Trip to Tohoku, Chubu and Chugoku in 2016 winter – Part 9, Visit Snow Monkey Park in Nagano


You can get Kanazawa, Takayama, Toyama and Takaoka by JR pass. But you have to take a bus from one of these stations and need to pay for the bus. Please see the link below to find more information:

How to access to Shirakawago from Takayama, Kanazawa, Takaoka and Toyama.

Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route

You can access to Nagano, Shinano-Omachi or Toyama by JR Pass. After arrival in these cities, you need to pay for local transportation. Please see the link below to find more information:

Tateyama-Kurobe Alpine Route, one of most spectacular sightseeing route in Northern Japan Alps

If intend to go through whole part of Alpine Route, you can use Tateyama Kurobe option ticket. Please see the following link:

Tateyama Kurobe Option Ticket (one way)


You can get Arashiyama, Nijo, Fushimi Inari and Uji by JR pass. But you need to take subway, city bus and/or other Non JR railways to get the various tourist places. Please see the post below to find more information:


You can take any local trains, such as Osaka Kanjo line (Osaka loop line). You can access to Universal City (USJ) too. But JR-Namba station is not very convenient and some places in the city cannot be accessed by JR pass, such as Osaka Kaiyukan Aquarium. Please see the post below to find more information:

You also can take Limited Express Haruka and Kansai Airport Rapid Train by JR pass to/from Kansai airport. Nankai railway is not covered.


Actually many places can be accessed by JR station. You can get Kobe by JR pass easily. You may not add any additional deals. Please see the link below to find more information:

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


You can get Nara by JR trains from either Kyoto and Osaka. Most of tourist spots in Nara can be accessed by walk from JR Nara station. Please see the link below to find more information:

How to access to Nara by Japan Rail Pass. If you don’t use JR Pass, Kintetsu Railway is more convenient.

Mt. Koya (Koyasan)

You should take Nankai railway from Namba or Shin-Imamiya. Nankai railway is not JR and you need to pay extra. Please see the link below to find more information:

How to access World Heritage Mt. Koya. Japan Rail Pass can be used to get Mt. Koya?


You can access to Hiroshima by Shinkansen and it’s covered by JR pass. And also JR pass covers Hiroshima sightseeing loop bus “Meipuru-pu” fully. This bus covers most of tourist spots in Hiroshima. Please see the following link to find the detailed information:

Hiroshima sightseeing loop bus Meipuru-pu official site


You can take JR local train to Miyajimaguchi and then take ferry to Miyajima. Both train and ferry are covered by JR pass. Please see the link below to find more information:

How to access to Miyajima from Hiroshima by local train. No extra charge for Japan Rail Pass user.

Fukuoka / Hakata

JR Pass does not cover Fukuoka city subway and Nishitetsu railway. Only subway connects Fukuoka airport and Hakata. But you cannot use JR pass to get airport because subway is not covered. Some places around Fukuoka is covered by Nishitetsu railway, such as Dazaifu Tenmangu shrine. But Nishitetsu railway is not covered by JR pass either.

Who is eligible?

If you are the foreign tourist, you have to be “Temporary Visitor”. This entry status will be stamped at immigration on your passport. Other status cannot be acceptable. You have to show your passport at the station when you pass your exchange order to get actual pass.
If you are already in Japan as other status, you have to change your status first. Otherwise you cannot buy Japan Rail Pass. Please see “How to buy and exchange”.

If you are Japanese citizen who have permanently status in foreign country, or who married to a non-Japanese, you are qualified.

How to refund

You can refund within one year from issue date before you turn in for the actual pass. Simply bring or send your exchange order to the agent where you purchased it. They will subtract a handling fee and refund to you. The handling fee is usually 10% of the amount. Contact to your agent and make sure it before you refund.
You can NEVER refund after turned in the actual pass.

Lost or Stolen

Once you lost it, it’s over. Either an exchange order or an actual pass cannot be reissued.


  1. Qing says:

    Hello Takeshi San! I have read your posts and would appreciate your advise on my itinerary below. I am a bit confused with all the passes available in Japan! Sometimes I think too many choices are not a good thing! Haha anyway, please comment on my trip.
    24th December – arrive kIX 4pm – stay Osaka (near Namba station? Easy access to JR?)
    25th explore and stay Osaka
    26th Osaka – explore osaka- stay Osaka (or to Kobe Day trip?)
    27th – early start to Hiroshima – miyajima – stay Osaka ((did not want to go Himeji just to see a wrapped up building under reconstruction!)
    28th from Osaka – travel to and stay Kyoto
    29th Kyoto – Nara day trip – Kyoto
    30th Kyoto – explore Kyoto – stay Kyoto 
    31st Kyoto – explore Kyoto – stay Kyoto (New years eve)
    1/1 Kyoto –  travel to Kanazawa – stay Kanazawa (since most shops wll be closed we think maybe this is a good time to travel? Or should we stay in Kyoto for New years day activities, if there is any?)
    2nd – Kanazawa – explore – stay Kanazawa (side trip to takayama?)
    3rd – Kanazawa  transfer (how? Rail or bus?) to hakuba – stay hakuba
    4th – ski – Hakuba
    5th – ski – Hakuba
    6th – Transfer (how?) to Nozawa onsen – stay Nozawa
    7th – stay Nozawa
    8th – nozawa to Tokyo – stay Tokyo
    9th – stay Tokyo or Nikko day trip?
    10th – explore tokyo – stay Tokyo
    11th – visit Yokohama – stay Tokyo
    12th – return home in the evening via narita Tokyo airport
    apart from my questions above in (?) also can you advise if it is economical to get jR pass and what type? My itinerary is flexible so changes can be made.

    Thank you so much and sorry about the long story!


  2. Sam Folkard says:

    Dear Takeshi-san,

    I’ll be travelling to Japan very soon for two weeks with my girlfriend. We’re going to get a rail pass for the first week. I wonder whether you might be able to comment please on one leg of the journey that I’m finding it very difficult to find out about and whether you think a JR Pass would be value for money for the second week please.

    Current plan:
    First week: 29th September Nagasaki-Hiroshima
    1st October Hiroshima-Kyoto
    3rd October Kyoto-Takayama

    Second week:
    6th Takayama-Mount Fuji – how easy is this journey?
    8th Mount Fuji-Tokyo
    Rest of the time in Tokyo

    Could you advise how much the journey from Takayama-Fuji and Fuji-Tokyo would cost individually please? Do you think it is worth getting the pass for the second week?

    Many thanks for any advice.

    With best wishes,


  3. Eddie says:

    Hi Takeshi,
    Just would like to get yours advice,
    I and my wife will travel to japan for sightseeing with planning as follows:
    11 oct arrival at Narita and will go to Osaka by shinkansen
    11 oct stay at osaka for 2 nights
    13 oct go to kyoto and stay 2 nights
    15 oct go to tokyo then continue trip to hakone and stay 2 nights
    17 oct go to tokyo and stay 2 nights and return to my home country thru narita
    do you think it is worth value for us to use JR pass for 7 days ?
    If we use JR Pass, do we need to exchange ticket in each station ?
    And do we need to top-up the fare ?

    Yours advice is really could help us enjoy the travelling

  4. Patama says:

    Dear Sir,

    Please comment on my plan to Japan with 14 day JR Pass as follows:-

    Nov 8 – 11 Stay in Osaka with one day trip to Hiroshima on Nov 9 ( arrive Osaka Kansai A/P)
    Nov 11 – 12 Kyoto
    Nov 12 – 14 Takayama
    Nov 14 – 15 Nagoya
    Nov 15 – 20 Tokyo back to BKK from Tokyo

    Do you think this is a smooth travel plan for two ladies of about 50 years travelling on our own. Thank you for your reply

    • JPRail says:

      Hi Patama,

      I don’t see any problem on your itinerary. That’s good to go. I just want to tell you just one thing.

      Regarding trip to Hiroshima, if you want to visit Hiroshima and Miyajima in one day, it will be busy trip. It takes 2 hours to get Hiroshima by Shinkansen. You will spend another one hour to get Miyajima. So you will spend 6 hours total for just transfer on this trip. If you can stay in Hiroshima one night, it will be much more comfortable. Hiroshima and Miyajima are worth while staying one night in my opinion.


      Takeshi / JP Rail

  5. Srinivas says:

    Hi Takeshi,

    Thank you for all the valuable information posted on your website. I will be in Japan Oct 12 (evening time) to the 27th and am considering purchasing a 14-day JR ordinary pass ($446 USD), but I do not know if it will be worth it based upon my itinerary:

    Tokyo (Asakusabashi) Oct 12-20

    Osaka (Nishi-Shinsaibashi) Oct 20-26

    While we are in Osaka, we plan to make day trips to Kyoto for temple/shrine visits.

    From Osaka, return to Tokyo (Asakusabashi) Oct 26, fly from Narita on the 27th.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated, thank you.


  6. John says:

    Hello Takeshi / JP Rail,

    First of all. Thank you for such an informative website that clearly explains all about the JR Passes in detail. I have found yours to be the most detailed and understandable.

    I (us + wife) are heading to Japan for 54 days. We are on a long trip and this is part one. We intend to stay a month just outside Osaka and the rest just outside Tokyo. These will be our HQ. From there we will do lots of daily travels.

    I have put together a DRAFT itinerary of our stay and wonder if you would take a look for me. It is rather long and I do apologise. With that said, if you can then suggest which JR passes to purchase.

    I thank you for reading this post and appreciate your time.
    Mon 17/03/2014 YOKOHAMA Arrive @ 8am
    18/03/ YOKOHAMA
    19/03/ YOKOHAMA – OSAKA (Staying in SEMBAYASHIYA for the month)
    20/03/ OSAKA (public holiday) Osaka Castle + Shitennoji
    21/03/ OSAKA to MT KOYA – Mount Koya (Koyasan) + Kongobuji
    KYOTO – Kiyomizudera
    KYOTO – illuminations at Kiyomizudera
    Sat 22/03/ OSAKA to KYUSHU return – Hanamiyama Park + Fukushima
    Sun 23/03/ OSAKA to KYUSHU return – Fukuoka Castle (Maizuru Park)

    24/03/ OSAKA to KYUSHU return – Kurokawa
    25/03/ OSAKA to KAGOSHIMA – Beppu overnight baths or Kurokawa
    26/03/ KAGOSHIMA to OSAKA
    27/03/ OSAKA to HIROSHIMA return – Hiroshima + Miyajima + Hiroshima Castle
    28/03/ OSAKA to HIROSHIMA return – Hiroshima’s Peace Memorial Park
    Sat 29/03/ OSAKA to HIROSHIMA return – Kintai-kyo Bridge. + Iwakuni Castle + Matsue Castle
    Sun 30/03/ OSAKA to NARA return – Todaiji + Isuien + Kofukuji + Kasuga Taisha + Horyuji Temple + Heijo Palace + Yakushiji Temple + Toshodaiji

    31/03/ OSAKA to KYOTO return – Kyoto Tower + city viewing
    01/04/ OSAKA to KYOTO return – Gion
    KYOTO – Sanjusangendo
    KYOTO – Nijo Castle
    02/04/ OSAKA to KYOTO return – The Kyoto Imperial Palace
    KYOTO – ALSO Sento Imperial Palace
    KYOTO – ALSO Pontocho
    03/04/ OSAKA to KYOTO return – Ginkakuji (Silver Pavilion)
    04/04/ OSAKA to KYOTO return – Nanzenji Temple
    Sat 05/04/ SPARE DAY (rest)
    Sun 06/04/ SPARE DAY (rest)

    07/04/ OSAKA to KANAZAWA return -Kenrokuen + Higashi Chaya District + Myoryuji Temple + Castle
    08/04/ OSAKA to KYOTO return – Fushimi Inari Shrine
    09/04/ OSAKA to KYOTO return – Byodoin Temple (Might be construction work)
    or this – The Amanohashidate Sandbar + Nariaiji Temple
    10/04/ OSAKA to KYOTO return – Tofukuji
    11/04/ OSAKA to MT FUJI return – fuji five lakes (Kawaguchiko + Chureito Pagoda)
    Sat 12/04/ SPARE DAY (rest)
    Sun 13/04/ SPARE DAY (rest)

    14/04/ OSAKA to TAKAYAMA – Takayama festival (stay overnight)
    16/04/ – Saihoji, more commonly known as Kokedera
    17/04/ – Ninnaji
    18/04/ OSAKA to KYOTO return – Arashiyama
    Sat 19/04/ OSAKA to TOKYO – travel to Tokyo new apartment for 21 days
    Sun 20/04/ TOKYO to MT FUJI return – Lake Kawaguchiko + The Chureito Pagoda

    21/04/ TOKYO to NIKKO return – Toshogu
    22/04/ TOKYO to KAMAKURA return – Kamakura
    23/04/ TOKYO – Kamikochi
    24/04/ TOKYO to YAMANOUCHI – The Jigokudani Monkey Park
    ALSO – Matsumoto Castle (Matsumotojo)
    25/04/ TOKYO to HASUIKE – The Shiga Kogen Ski (possible day on the slopes)
    Sat 26/04/ TOKYO SPARE DAY (rest)
    Sun 27/04/ TOKYO SPARE DAY (rest)

    28/04/ TOKYO (public holiday)
    29/04/ TOKYO (public holiday)
    30/04/ TOKYO – Tsukiji Market
    01/05/ TOKYO to NAGANO return – Zenkoji Temple
    ALSO NAGANO – The Togakure Ninpo Museum + Could ski here instead?
    02/05/ TOKYO – The Izu Peninsula (Izu Hanto)
    Sat 03/05/ TOKYO SPARE DAY (rest)
    Sun 04/05/ TOKYO SPARE DAY (rest)

    05/05/ TOKYO (public holiday)
    06/05/ TOKYO to FUJI FIVE LAKES return – Fuji Shibazakura Festival
    07/05/ TOKYO to HAKONE return – Hakone
    08/05/ SPARE DAY
    09/05/ TOKYO to YOKOHAMA – move to Yokohama one night before leaving Japan
    Sat 10/05/2014 YOKOHAMA leave @8pm

    • JPRail says:

      Hi John,

      Thanks for your comment about my website. I’m happy that my website helps you to make your plan.

      I checked your itinerary and my suggestions are following:

      1. Trip to Kyushu
      You will plan to have a day trip to Kyushu from Osaka in late March. I understand Osaka is your base to visit. But do you know how long it takes to get Kyushu? If you get Kurokawa onsen, it takes at least 5 hours one way. Even if you go to Beppu, it takes 3.5 hours from Osaka. Even in just Kyushu, it takes 3 hours+ from Kagoshima to Beppu.
      I recommend you to make a few night Kyushu trip plan. It’s much easier to travel in Kyushu.

      2. Trip to Hiroshima
      Hiroshima is much closer than Kyushu from Osaka. But it still takes 2 hours one way from Osaka. And Hiroshima is located between Osaka and Kyushu. If you can squeeze Hiroshima into Kyushu trip, that will be much easier.

      3. Trip to Fuji
      Why are you going to visit Fuji twice from Osaka and Tokyo? (Apr 11 and 20) Lake Kawaguchi is too far from Osaka as day trip.

      4. Trip to Nagano and other spots in Nagano
      Nagano can be accessed by Shinkansen in 100 minutes from Tokyo. But if you go to Hasuike, you will spend another 1.5 hour by Nagano railway and bus. It will be very busy day ski trip. Trip to Kamikochi is very tight too. You will spend 3 hours+ to get Matsumoto and it takes another 2 hours to get Kamikochi. It takes 5 hours one way to get Kamikochi.

      5. Rail Pass
      You may not need JR Pass.
      Trip to Kyushu from Osaka http://www.westjr.co.jp/global/en/travel-information/pass/all_kyushu/
      Trip to Nagano, Kamikochi, Izu http://www.jreast.co.jp/e/eastpass/index.html
      Trip to Nikko http://www.tobu.co.jp/foreign/pass/all_pass.html
      Trip to Hakone http://www.hakonenavi.jp/english/freepass/index.html
      If you can visit Kanazawa, Amanohasidate and Takayama and transfer to Tokyo from Osaka, you can use JR pass 7 days.

      Japan is small country. But it takes several hours to visit most of places outside Osaka and Tokyo. If you don’t care, it’s okay. But even visiting Hakone and Nikko from Tokyo is a bit tight as day trip. I recommend you to stay there too.


      Takeshi / JP Rail

  7. Maina says:

    Hi Takeshi!

    Big greetings to you from Moscow!

    I’m so glad that I found you and I hope you will not refuse to help me. I’m looking for help on Russian websites and can’t collect the puzzle. This is my first and long-awaited trip to Japan. I’m flying with my 16 year old daughter. I already bought tickets and reserved hotels.

    Should I buy JR PASS for all the 21 days? Will JR pass cover all those destinations? What do you think? I am looking forward to your comments and suggestions.
    The only thing I cant refuse from the reserved hotels in Tokyo (penalty payment 2 days).
    We don’t want to rush and run from train to train. We want to enjoy Japan.

    22/12/2013 – 11/01/2014 21 days

    22-Dec Sunday Narita airport-Tokyo (acquaintance with the city)
    23-Dec Monday Tokyo-Imperial palace! (sight-seeing tour)
    24-Dec Tuesday Tokyo-Yokohama-Tokyo (reserved hotel for 3 nights at Asakusa)
    25-Dec Wednesday Tokyo-Kyoto (sight-seeing tour)
    26-Dec Thursday Kyoto-Nara-Kyoto
    27-Dec Friday Kyoto-Osaka-Kyoto (reserved hotel for 3 nights at Kyoto Station)
    28-Dec Saturday Kyoto-Hiroshima (sight-seeing tour)
    29-Dec Sunday Hiroshima-Myiagima (reserved hotel for 2 nights at
    Boulevard of Peace)
    30-Dec Monday Hiroshima-Himeji-Tokyo
    31-Dec Tuesday Tokyo (my dream has come true, New Year in Tokyo, but I don’t know
    where to celebrate it 🙁 )
    1-Jan Wednesday Tokyo (sight-seeing tour-shopping)
    2-Jan Thursday Tokyo (to go sight-seeing-shopping)
    3-Jan Friday Tokyo-Kamakura-Tokyo
    4-Jan Saturday Tokyo-Hakone-Fujiyama (1 night, I dont know in what area it is better to stay)
    5-Jan Sunday Hakone-Tokyo (reserved hotel for 6 nights at Asakusa)
    6-Jan Monday Tokyo-Disneysea
    7-Jan Tuesday Tokyo-Nagoya-Tokyo
    8-Jan Wednesday Tokyo-Nikko-Tokyo
    9-Jan Thursday Tokyo-Nagano-Tokyo
    10-Jan Friday Tokyo (farewell to the city-the last romantic dinner in Tokyo)
    11-Jan Saturday Tokyo-Narita (what a pity!)


    Maina and Michelle

    • JPRail says:

      Hi Marina,

      I’m happy that my website helped you to make your itinerary. 🙂

      First of all, the best choice for your trip is 7 days pass and other deals.
      You can use 7 days pass for Dec 24 to 30. And make some small change to save your cost. I recommend you to change the following:

      24-Dec Tuesday Tokyo-Nagano-Tokyo (reserved hotel for 3 nights at Asakusa)
      25-Dec Wednesday Tokyo-Nagoya-Kyoto (sight-seeing tour)
      26-Dec Thursday Kyoto-Nara-Kyoto
      27-Dec Friday Kyoto-Osaka-Kyoto (reserved hotel for 3 nights at Kyoto Station)
      28-Dec Saturday Kyoto-Hiroshima (sight-seeing tour)
      29-Dec Sunday Hiroshima-Myiagima (reserved hotel for 2 nights at
      Boulevard of Peace)
      30-Dec Monday Hiroshima-Himeji-Tokyo
      31-Dec to 6-Jan same as original itinerary
      7-Jan Tuesday Tokyo-Yokohama-Tokyo
      8-Jan Wednesday Tokyo-Nikko-Tokyo
      9-Jan Thursday Free

      I don’t recommend you to go to Nagoya as day trip from Tokyo. As you probably know, Nagoya is located between Tokyo and Kyoto. Of course you can go to Nagoya as day trip from Tokyo if you want. But you will waste 4 hours trip time for round trip to Nagoya.

      The rest of day trip by JR trains long transfer is trip to Nagano. That’s why I includes in 7 days by JR Pass on Dec 24.

      The trip to Yokohama, Kamakura and Disney sea are very short distance trip. It doesn’t make sense to use JR pass for such a short distance trip.

      Regarding other deals, I recommend you to use the following:

      Suica & N’ex one way ticket for the arrival day and sightseeing in Tokyo.
      You can use Suica for not only JR trains but also subways in Tokyo. If you want, you can use Suica in Kyoto, Osaka and Hiroshima. This deals includes only 1500 yen preload e-money. But if you like it, you can add more fund into Suica.
      Especially when you go to Yokohama and Kamakura.

      Fuji Hakone pass is the best deal for the trip to Mt. Fuji and Hakone.
      This sites has lots of info to learn more about Fuji and Hakone. I recommend you to stay in Lake Kawaguchi and Hakone one night each. That is reason why I make one extra day at the last to make an adjsutment.

      World Heritage Pass is the best choice to travel to Nikko.
      Especially Tobu railway departs from Asakusa. It will be much more convenient than JR trains. I recommend you to stay in Nikko one night. So you can choose one night Nikko or one night Fuji. I think you can combine Yokohama and Kamakura in one day. You can even skip Kamakura because Kamakura has very similar taste to Kyoto and Nikko.

      At last, I mention to you several things.
      Trip to Hirohisma on Dec 28 will be very busy. In Japan, New Years holidays is the busiest period. Everybody go back to hometown. I guess Dec 27, 28 and 29 to local side and Jan 4 and 5 to city side will be busy.

      In New Years Eve, Everybody go to shrine. That is called “Hatsumoude” in Japanese. That means “the first visit to shrine of the year”. Everybody make a wish. Most of trains run all night long. Meiji Jingu shrine near Harajuku has the biggest number of visitor in Japan. Sensoji in Asakusa is one of the most popular for the first visit too. You will see the biggest number of the people at once in your life.

      In New Years day, many stores/shops will be closed. It’s not a right time to go shopping.


      Takeshi / JP Rail

      • Maina says:

        Hi Takeshi!

        Thank you for such a quick response. I’m so pleased. I understood everything. I will follow your suggestions.To make changes to my itinerary I need some time and then I will send you my homework:)
        I still can buy at the airport Special 1-Day or 2-Day Open Ticket except Suica & N’ex one way ticket? How many of these tickets can I buy?

        My daughter wants to go shopping but I’ll try to find time on other days when I change my itinerary.

        Thanks again,


        • JPRail says:

          Hi Maina,

          I think 1xOne day and 2XTwo days are enough for Dec 31 to Jan 2. But it depends on how many trips you will have. If you have only one round trip a day, total fares will be less than 600 yen. And also you will have Suica.


          Takeshi / JP Rail

          • Maina says:

            Hi Takeshi!

            I havent written correctly. I have booked the hotel at Asakusa from 5 to 11 of January. So I get to make some changes according to your advice.
            From 24 to 30 of January as you suggested.

            31-Dec Tuesday Tokyo
            1-Jan Wednesday Tokyo-Nikko (1 night, I dont know in what area it is better to stay), World Heritage Pass
            2-Jan Thursday Nikko-Tokyo
            3-Jan Friday Tokyo-Lake Kawaguchi (1 night)
            4-Jan Saturday Lake Kawaguchi-Hakone (1 night), Fuji Hakone pass
            5-Jan Sunday Hakone-Tokyo
            6-Jan Monday Tokyo
            7-Jan Tuesday Tokyo-Yokohama
            8-Jan Wednesday Tokyo-Kamakura Odakyu’s Enoshima Kamakura Free Pass,
            9-Jan Thursday Tokyo-Disneysee

            What do you think? Not too hard?



          • Maina says:


            Thank you that helped me organise my trip!

            Can I reserve a seat on a trains for all my directions at the airport or only after activation of JR pass?



            • JPRail says:

              Hi Maina,

              If you exchange the pass at the airport, you can reserve it. You can decide which day you want to start to use the pass when you exchange. So you can complete everything when you arrive.


              Takeshi / JP Rail

  8. marcelo says:


    I forget to mention:
    We will arrive on 25th sept 7:30am.
    I booked the hotels already but I can change it anytime, In kyoto the hotel is in Shijoomiya station, tokyo harajuku station and hiroshima train station. in Osaka I still didnt decide but for now I booked one night in Kyoto, in the same hotel than before.
    Hamamatsu I will visit my wife’s relatives. we intend to arrive about 10:00 and depart before 16:00.
    Imperial palace in tokyo was booked and waiting for confirmation, Kidzania I will book as soon I confirm all details. I still need re check another places to check about booking request.
    I could change osaka for the first day and stay in kyoto in the last day as well, what do you think it is better? Osaka also have a Kidzania(KOSHIEN) but my wife is worried about the english use in Osaka instead to Tokyo.

    • JPRail says:

      Hi Marcelo,

      You can use 14 days pass for this itinerary. But if I were you, I make some change at the following:

      25-Sep Wednesday osaka airport-kyoto city- eastern kyoto
      26-Sep Thursday kyoto-nara
      27-Sep Friday kyoto – southern and central kyoto
      28-Sep Saturday kyoto – northern kyoto
      29-Sep Sunday kyoto8:00 -hamamatsu until 16:00 – Tokyo-night
      30-Sep Monday Tokyo -nikko
      1-Oct Tuesday tokyo Disneyworld
      2-Oct Wednesday tokyo kidzania
      3-Oct Thursday tokyo Imperial palace 13:00 booked
      4-Oct Friday tokyo Hakone or kamakura or free day
      5-Oct Saturday tokyo-osaka
      6-Oct Sunday Osaka-hiroshima-myiagima-Hiroshima
      7-Oct Monday Hiroshima – osaka-Kansai 21:00-australia

      The reason why I made change above trip time on Sep 29 and 30 in your original itinerary. It will be a long trip from Hamamatsu to Hiroshima and from Hiroshima to Tokyo.
      Sample schedule
      Hamamatsu 16:37 (Hikari 477) 18:05 ShinOsaka 18:22 (Sakura 573) 19:56 Hiroshima
      Hiroshima 18:56 (Sakura 566) 20:26 ShinOsaka 20:33 (Hikari 538) 23:26 Tokyo

      As you probably know, JR Pass does not cover Nozomi and Mizuho. So the best connections in your original itinerary for Seo 29 and 30 are above. I don’t think it will be comfortable trip with your kids.

      If you can change the schedule as I suggested above, it will be easier. On Sep 29, you can catch Hikari 472 at 16:11 in Hamamatsu, and it will arrive Tokyo at 17:40. On Oct 5, Tokyo-Osaka trip is less than 3 hrs by Hikari. Osaka-Hiroshima trip is 1.5 hours. In the last day, you have to go to KIX from Hiroshima. But you can finish most of points in Hiroshima and Miyajima on Oct 7. So you can take some break in Osaka before heading back to KIX.

      And I would like to mention one more thing. One day trip to Nikko or Hakone is very tight. And also Nikko and Kamakura have very similar taste as Kyoto. If you want to enjoy real Japanese atmosphere, it’s okay. Especially Kamakura is easy. It will be comfortable for your kids. You can spend one full day in Tokyo for visiting Tokyo Skytree, Asakusa or Odaiba. These destinations are more kids friendly. I think you can spend one more full day in TDL. Kids will be happy, I’m sure.

      If you cannot change it, it’s okay. Just follow your original itinerary.


      Takeshi / JP Rail

      • Marcelo says:

        Hi Takeshi,
        talking with my wife and thinking better about less hotel changes about the convenience I change it again.

        25-Sep Wednesday Osaka airport7:30am -Kyoto city- eastern kyoto
        26-Sep Thursday Kyoto-Nara
        27-Sep Friday Kyoto – Southern and Central Kyoto
        28-Sep Saturday Kyoto – Northern Kyoto
        29-Sep Sunday Kyoto – Hamamatsu – Tokyo
        30-Sep Monday Tokyo – Asakusa/Odaiba
        1-Oct Tuesday Tokyo – Tokyo kamakura
        2-Oct Wednesday Tokyo – Kidzania
        3-Oct Thursday Tokyo – Imperial Palace
        4-Oct Friday Tokyo – Tokyo Disneyworld
        5-Oct Saturday Tokyo – Hiroshima
        6-Oct Sunday Hiroshima-
        7-Oct Monday Hiroshima – Osaka – 21:00 Kansai-Australia
        I am thinking if it is better get the JR pass or Jr west+ JR pass+normal fare, any advange to get the JW west instead the normal JR pass?

        • JPRail says:

          Hi Marcelo,

          JR Pass 14 days is your best choice. JR West Kansai Area Pass does not have any more benefit than JR Pass.


          Takeshi / JP Rail

  9. Marcelo says:

    Hi Takeshi,
    How are you?
    I think I almost finish my Japan Trip itinerary, If I am right I should buy the JR PASS for all the 14 days, but I will wait for your comments and suggestions.

    25-Sep Wednesday osaka airport-kyoto city- eastern kyoto
    26-Sep Thursday kyoto-nara
    27-Sep Friday kyoto – southern and central kyoto
    28-Sep Saturday kyoto – northern kyoto
    29-Sep Sunday kyoto8:00 -hamamatsu until 16:00 – hiroshima-night
    30-Sep Monday hiroshima-myiagima- at 18:00 to tokyo
    1-Oct Tuesday Tokyo -nikko
    2-Oct Wednesday tokyo kidzania
    3-Oct Thursday tokyo Imperial palace 13:00 booked
    4-Oct Friday tokyo Disneyworld
    5-Oct Saturday tokyo Hakone or kamakura or free day
    6-Oct Sunday tokyo-osaka
    7-Oct Monday osaka-Kansai 21:00-australia

    what do you think, about it? I will be traveling in 3 adults and 2 kids( 9 and 7).
    Kind regards,

  10. Tommy says:

    Just want to confirm, if i am taking non-reserved seat on Hikari/Kodama with the pass I just need to board the train whenever it arrives. No need to go thru Midori no Madoguchi right?


Copied title and URL