questions & answers: general japan travel

help getting from shin-yokohama to kyoto after 9 pm on may 19!

Help getting from Shin-yokohama to Kyoto after 9 pm on May 19!

Hi there,

So I'm trying to get from Mount Fuji (Kawaguchiko) to Kyoto. My tour of Fuji-san ends at 6 pm on May 19 and so far I've planned on using mostly JR to get to Kyoto.

Kawaguchiko station
↓by Fujikyu line(51min)1,110yen
Otsuki station
↓by JR Chuoline(30min)
Hachioji station
↓by JR Yokohama line(46min)
Shinyokohama
↓by Shinkansen line(Hikari or Kodama 2.5hours)
Kyoto

BUT, when I'm trying to search times to get from Shinyokohama to Kyoto at 9 pm, all they are giving me is Hikari AM trains (ie. 6:46 am) Does that mean they don't have anymore trains af 9 pm? Would it be possible to use to JR pass to take a Nozomi if I pay a little extra??

Thanks,
Jason

jason2012
jason2012

Hi Jason,

I've just checked for you (here), and the last Hikari leaves Shin-Yokohama at 8:22pm for Kyoto, which means you'll have to leave Kawaguchiko at 17:10 at the latest if you want to get there that day with a JR Pass (a 588km trip!). Unfortunately you cannot upgrade to Nozomi from a JR Pass and will have to pay the full fare if you want to use this service.

As an alternative (that could also be pretty fun), how about looking into using the Sunrise Izumo or Sunrise Seto sleepers (depart Tokyo at 10pm) to travel down to Himeji and then back up to Kyoto during the morning (sample itinerary). These sleepers have 'nobi nobi' carpeted areas with sheets and pillow that are free for JR Pass holders. Spaces do quickly fill up however, so if you decide to do this I recommend you reserve immediately on landing in Japan.

Hope this helps (a little)!

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mari
Expert_button_2

Mari,

Thanks for the quick response. Can you explain what happens at this time when it reaches Himeji:

05:25
08:15

overtransfer    HIMEJI

[ Arrival track No.8 / Departure track No.6 ]

It arrives at Himeji at 5:25 AM, then do you wait for the osaka train? Or you get to stay on the train until then?

Also, do these 'sleeper' trains contain beds/bedding, or is it just a seat/floor?

Thanks again,
Jason

jason2012
jason2012

Never mind Mari, I figured that one out.

jason2012
jason2012

But, if I do choose the Nozomi route, I have to reserve as soon as I get to Japan right? Does it normally sell out/fill out?

jason2012
jason2012

Yes... I'm afraid it's not a perfect solution.... With nobi nobi seating you usually have sheeting and a pillow provided (it's better than it sounds).

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mari
Expert_button_2

If you purchase a Nozomi ticket you can normally turn up and purchase it at the counter before travel. They are rarely full, but for peace of mind you should book your seat as soon as you can.

As cost of the Nozomi one way is more than the cost of a single night in a mid-range business hotel, how about staying in Yokohama for a night and then getting the Hikari down in the morning?

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mari
Expert_button_2

I'm probably going to take the sleeper as you suggested. If I arrive in Japan May 15 and want to take the sleeper May 19th, do you think it will fill up? Because I'm about to cancel my hotel on the 19th and want to make sure I have a place to stay in case I don't get the sleeper! Is there any way to reserve seats right now?

jason2012
jason2012

Hi Jason,

There is unfortunately no way to reserve the spot on the sleeper before you arrive in Japan as you will need to present your rail pass in order to reserve a place (it's one of the downsides to the sleepers being free). As the 19th is a weekend, I suspect you'll find the train to be quite busy, so it's hard to offer any guarantees here.

If it's possible to wait until you get to Japan and try to reserve the seat before you cancel your hotel, I think this is the best choice. If there are no sleepers then you can make a choice to pay for the Nozomi, or stay somewhere in Yokohama overnight before your trip down country in the morning.

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mari
Expert_button_2

So if I'm exchanging the pass at Narita, and want to reserve then as well, do I just show them something like this:
DATE FROM TO TIME Railway
May-18 ShinjukuOtsuki 15:30 JR LTD EXPR KAIJI
May-19 Otsuki Shinjuku 18:51 Ltd Expr Asuza 30

jason2012
jason2012

Hi Jason,

Yes, that will be perfect.

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mari
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