questions & answers: itinerary check

please help to see if i should buy jr pass for my itinerary?

Please help to see if i should buy JR Pass for my itinerary?

Hi all JR pass experts!

Your kind advice needed. My plan is as follows:

JAPAN BUDGET BACKPACK TOUR 27 OCT to 9 NOV REVISED ITINERARY AS AT 30 AUG 2013

26 OCT ARRIVE AT HANEDA AT 11PM (CAN WE MAKE IT FOR LAST TRAIN TO TOKYO CITY?)

27 OCT TOKYO

28 OCT TOKYO

            OVERNIGHT BUS TO SHIOJIRI / NARAI
            DAY TRIP IN NARAI
            BUS OR TRAIN TO TSUMAGO-OVERNIGHT IN TSUMAGO

29 OCT TSUMAGO HIKE TO MEGOME

            DAY TRIP IN MEGOME
            OVERNIGHT BUS TO TAKAYAMA OR SHIRAKAWAGO

30 OCT SHIRAKAWAGO - OVERNIGHT

31 OCT BUS TO TAKAYAMA - OVERNIGHT

01 NOV TAKAYAMA TO KAGOSHIMA BY OVERNIGHT BUS OR TRAIN?

02 NOV KAGOSHIMA TO YAKUSHIMA BY FERRY

            YAKUSHIMA

03 NOV YAKUSHIMA

04 NOV YAKUSHIMA BACK TO KAGOSHIMA

            KAGOSHIMA TO NAGASAKI

05 NOV NAGASAKI TO HIROSHIMA

06 NOV HIROSHIMA TO KYOTO – BY WILLER BUS PASS?

07 NOV KYOTO

            KYOTO TO OSAKA – BY WILLER BUS PASS?

08 NOV OSAKA TO NAGOYA & BACK TO OSAKA – BY WILLER BUS PASS?

            OSAKA NIGHT BUS BACK TO TOKYO – BY WILLER BUS PASS OR TRAIN?

09 NOV TOKYO

            RETURN TO MALAYSIA

Looking at all the places i would like to visit, should i get a 7d or 14d JR pass or just go everywhere by buses? I am thinking i can save some $$ by using overnight buses to travel long distances...

Kindly help advice. Need to finalise all this and book the necessary minshukus/dorm/ryokan/onsen asap.

Thanks in advance!

Ken

ken777
ken777

Hi Ken!

Looking at your itinerary, I do think that at least a 7 day JR Pass would be a great addition for two reasons.
The first is that there's no night bus connection between Takayama and Kagoshima, the trip is rather long (1264.5 km by rail). The price for a one way ticket is ¥ 28,130 which is almost the same as a 7 day JR Pass ¥ 28,300 you could than use the JR Pass to travel to Nagasaki, Hiroshima and Kyoto saving a ton over normal tickets.

This will also avoid the over use of night buses, this is of course personal but I can rarely sleep in a night bus and get really tired the next day.

Some other things I would like to add:
Kyoto - Osaka (on nov 7) are located closely and you can take a local train connection between them which just takes 30min / 540yen, so there's no need for a night bus here :) Than from Kyoto - Nagoya, look into taking a local train too, the connection takes a little over 2 hours but is just ¥ 2,520. You can find the full route information here.

I hope this helps!
Daniel

72a8815842aa5db137c135807bd6bb11?s=50&d=mm
Daniel-san
Expert_button_2

Daniel-san, Arigato!

Thanks for the insightful suggestions. I'll amend my plans accordingly.

Yes, the long legs of travels has been a bit of a concern for my girlfriend coz she
is not really such a hardcore backpacker. She's more used to following organized
tour groups!! hahaha

So if i already have a 7 day JR pass so i dont have to use the Willer passes anymore ya.

If that's the case then perhaps i can bypass Hiroshima and go straight from Nagasaki to
Kyoto and spend an extra day in Kyoto? I've been advised that there's not much to
see and do in Hiroshima?

So my JR pass will be usable on all lines connecting Takayama - Kagoshima - Nagasaki - Kyoto? I've read
quite a lot on JR passes and it's a bit confusing as there's JR East, JR West etc etc and apparently JR passes cant be used on the Sanyo line? Do i have to buy another ticket to pass thru that line on the way from Takayama to Kagoshima and when travelling back to Kyoto?

It's our first time in japan so my apologies if my questions sound rather silly....but thanks in advance for sharing
your info with me.

Ken777

ken777
ken777

Oh ya, sorry i forgot to ask. I saw somewhere in one of the travel forums that effective 01 June 2013 there's a 5 days flexi JR pass available? but i cant find this on the JR website? Is this a hoax or is there a special arrangement to purchase this flexi pass?

Apparently this pass is like the Willer bus pass where the day is deducted only on those days when u use the pass and is not like the 7 day pass which once activated will start ticking continuously even if it is not used....

Ken777

ken777
ken777

Hi Ken!

You could skip Hiroshima although I personally love that city, the peace museum is not to be missed and you can also visit the iconic Miyajima from there too!

All lines Takayama - Kagoshima - Nagasaki - Kyoto - Hiroshima (and if you make a stop there) are covered so no need to worry about additional budgeting. The JR Pass I am referring too is the nationwide pass and valid everywhere in the country so you don't have to worry about regional restriction. You won't have to worry about further budgeting either because no additional costs are needed.

As for the 5 day flexi pass, I think that you are confused with the JR EAST Pass which is only valid north of Tokyo and would not benefit your travel at all. The 7 JR Pass is valid for 7 consecutive days and will expire after 7 days even if you don't use it. However it does allow for unlimited travel during this period, so make the most of it! (which you already do by making a trip to Kagoshima).

I hope this helps too!
Daniel

72a8815842aa5db137c135807bd6bb11?s=50&d=mm
Daniel-san
Expert_button_2

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