questions & answers: itinerary check

sleeper trains or bullets to hokkaido

Sleeper trains or bullets to Hokkaido

Need your suggestion of the JR pass type to purchase in order for me can safe money for my Japan trip 2012, My itinerary for as below:-

Day 1 (1 May) - Arrival Haneda airport
Day 2 (2 May) - Sighseeing within Tokyo
Day 3 (3 May) - sightseeing within Tokyo
Day 4 (4 May) - Sighseeing within Tokyo
Day 5 (5 May) - Sighseeing within Tokyo or travel to Hokkaido by night train
Day 6 (6 May) - sightseeing at otaru, Hakodate or etc
Day 7 (7 May) - sightseeing at Sapporo or etc / night train back to Tokyo
Day 8 (8 May) - stay at Tokyo or travel to Osaka
Day 9 (9 May) - stay at Tokyo or travel from Osaka to kyoto
Day 10 (10 May) - night flight departure

Thank you.

Regards,
Shu

Shushuwong
Shushuwong

Hi Shu,

If you do the travel you have listed, I think I'd aim for a 7 day rail pass for use from the 4th-10th.

There are 4 sleeper trains that you should investigate:

  • Cassiopea &Hokutosei (not 100% free)
  • Akebono & Hamanasu (possible to be free for JRP holders).

Cassiopea and Hokutosei will take you directly to Hokkaido from Tokyo, but will require you to pay for a couchette or room (JR Pass will cover most of the base train fare) as a minimum.

Akebono has goron-to-shito couchettes that are free for Japan Rail Pass holders to use, but will only take you as far as Aomori, where you will have to change train to go into Hokkaido. Hamanasu is a sleeper service that runs from Aomori to Sapporo that has carpeted areas (nobi-nobi seat) free for use for Japan Rail Pass holders.

A common trip I have heard Japan Rail Pass users do is to use the Hayabusa/Hayate shinkansen up to Aomori in the morning and then hop on the Hamanasu in the evening for the trip up into Sapporo.

Please remember that it is very important to reserve your place on the Sleeper trains, so try to reserve your place as soon as you arrive in Japan and exchange your Rail Pass.

Based on this method of transport, you itinerary from the 5th would look something like:

  1. Tokyo > Shin-aomori: ¥16370, (203mins, 713km)
  2. Shin-aomori > Sapporo(jr): ¥9000, (445mins, 483km)
  3. Sapporo(jr) > Shin-aomori: ¥13200, (323mins, 483km)
  4. Shin-aomori > Tokyo: ¥16370, (206mins, 713km)
  5. Tokyo > Osaka: ¥13750, (194mins, 556km)
  6. Osaka > Tokyo: ¥13750, (194mins, 556km)

TOTAL: ¥82,440 for 6 legs

At ¥28,300, a 7 day rail pass will give you a huge amount of saving of ¥54,140 over single tickets. Please remember to check the timings of your trip as some of these legs are long distance and so this will affect your planning to some extent.

Hope this helps!

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mari
Expert_button_2

Thank you for your prompt reply and your suggestion look great.

But may I know that the 7 days JR pass can also be accessible to the routes within Tokyo (eg: shibuya, shinjuku, ueno & etc) and Osaka(eg: nanba, umeda etc). Can I say that this JR pass can be use to accessible all JR routes in 7 days?

And, the sleeper train are provided bed? Any extra charges if request bed, travel from Tokyo to Sapporo?

Thank you^

Shushuwong
Shushuwong

One more question:
Cassiopea &Hokutosei roughly how much need to be top up for the couchette or room?

Tq

Shushuwong
Shushuwong

How can I check the train timing from Ueno to amori (there is only 1 train per only) to sapporo and sapporo to amori to ueno any time table I can check from Website?

Tq

Shushuwong
Shushuwong

Hi there,

But may I know that the 7 days JR pass can also be accessible to the routes within Tokyo (eg: shibuya, shinjuku, ueno & etc) and Osaka(eg: nanba, umeda etc). Can I say that this JR pass can be use to accessible all JR routes in 7 days?

Here's a map of JR stations and routes in Tokyo. The JR Pass is valid for all of these lines. Osaka also has many JR stations. However, in both cities it is likely you will also want to use the Metro system which is non-JR and so will be a separate charge.

And, the sleeper train are provided bed? Any extra charges if request bed, travel from Tokyo to Sapporo?

Of the free options, the goron-to-shito is like a bed, but with no sheets/covers/pillow. Really it's a place to relax, but is not a full bed. The nobi-nobi seat is much the same, but carpet only - so you can lie down, but expect to use your bag as a pillow if you do!

From Tokyo to Sapporo, you can use either the Cassiopea or Hokutosei for a full bed/room. Cassiopea only has whole rooms from ¥21,500. Hokutosei offers bunks or private rooms from ¥14,500. Please note that Cassiopea in particular gets fully booked, so if you do decide to use this train reserve as soon as you get to Japan.

How can I check the train timing from Ueno to amori (there is only 1 train per only) to sapporo and sapporo to amori to ueno any time table I can check from Website?

You can look up train timetables and costs for most of these legs at the Hyperdia travel planning website and learn how to use Hyperdia for Japan Rail Pass holders through our video blog.

For the Ueno to Aomori trains, I suggest you use a search for sleeper cars only. Here's a sample search.

Hope this helps!

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mari
Expert_button_2

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