questions & answers: itinerary check

tokyo - osaka - hiroshima - kyoto - nara - hakone - tokyo

Tokyo - Osaka - Hiroshima - Kyoto - Nara - Hakone - Tokyo

Hi,

i will be travel to Japan on 30 Jul 2012. I have difficulty to arrange transportation while travel in Japan...hope to get help.

below is my itinerary:
30/07 - Tokyo to Osaka
31/07 - Osaka
01/08 - Osaka to Hiroshima
02/08 - Hiroshima to Osaka
03/08 ~ 05/08 - Osaka to Kyoto (stay in Osaka)
06/08 - Nara (from Osaka, day trip)
07/08 - Osaka to Hakone
08/08 - Hakone to Tokyo (Stay at Ikebukuro)
09/08 ~ 10/08 - Disney & Disney Sea
11/08 - Kamakura (day trip)
12/08 - Karuizawa (day trip)
13/08 ~ 14/08 - Tokyo area

a) should i buy JR pass for 7 day or 14 days?

b) When i travel in Osaka, Kyoto, Nara and Tokyo, still need to buy other pass (example: Kansai Thru Pass in Osaka)?

c) Travel in Tokyo, JR pass enough to cover all tourism area as my itinerary show? or i should buy Suica as well?

d) Or can you advice the pass that i should buy in term of cost saving while i travel 16days in Japan?

Looking forward on your advice. Thanks.

Regards,
Lina

sqinm
sqinm

Hi there!

Lets firstly take a look at your costs to see if you could do your trip with a 7day pass + tickets:

  1. Tokyo > Osaka: ¥13750, (194mins, 556km)
  2. Osaka > Hiroshima: ¥9950, (104mins, 345km)
  3. Hiroshima > Osaka: ¥10520, (109mins, 345km)
  4. Osaka > Kyoto: ¥540, (29mins, 42km)
  5. Kyoto > Osaka: ¥540, (28mins, 42km)
  6. Osaka > Nara: ¥780, (59mins, 48km)
  7. Nara > Osaka: ¥780, (55mins, 48km)
  8. Osaka > Odawara: ¥12270, (159mins, 472km)
  9. Odawara > Ikebukuro: ¥1620, (67mins, 92km)
  10. Ikebukuro > Maihama: ¥380, (55mins, 25km)
  11. Maihama > Kamakura: ¥1050, (96mins, 66km)
  12. Kamakura > Tokyo: ¥890, (58mins, 53km)
  13. Tokyo > Karuizawa: ¥5750, (72mins, 146km)
  14. Karuizawa > Tokyo: ¥5750, (73mins, 146km)

TOTAL: ¥64570 for 14 legs

Please note that for Hakone I have used Odawara (from here you will need to use the non-JR Odakyu lines to get up to Hakone, I recommend the Hakone Free Pass for this. Also, for Disneyland/sea you should get to Maihama station and then use the Disney lines into the park proper. Aside from this, based on your itinerary the JR Pass will cover all the areas you mention - great! :)

As you can see you have costly travel in your itinerary all the way up until your Karuizawa trip, so I recommend that you opt for the 14 day pass, which will give you a saving of ¥19,470 over purchasing standard tickets. The only way a 7 day pass may make sense is if you were to rearrange your trip with the majority of the costly travel in the first 7 days, but I think you have a well spaced itinerary so recommend you stick with it.

When you are in Tokyo & Osaka you can get good use out of the JR Pass as both cities have a good internal JR network (map of JR lines in Tokyo). However Kyoto and Nara don't have internal JR and all will need you to use non-JR forms of transport at some point. It does depend on how much travel you want to do in these areas but I recommend you either purchase standard tickets/prepaid cards or a municipal pass over the Kansai Thru Pass as the JR Pass will cover your travel between these main locations and you only require internal travel.

So the short answer is: a 14 day rail pass and pay as you go internal subway/bus tickets as you need. :)

Hope this helps!

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mari
Expert_button_2

Mari, Thank you very much...

You have mentioned about the Kansai Thru Pass to cover my travel area to Kyoto and Nara....

How about Osaka (stay in Shinsaibashi)? I wonder JR pass manage to cover my internal travel area in Osaka such as Aquarium Kaiyukan, Tempozan, Osaka Castle etc.
Checked thru Hypedia, seem like JR pass not able to cover all area in Osaka.
Should i buy Osaka 2 day pass?

sqinm
sqinm

Example:

Tokyo to Osaka --> Take JR Tokaido Shinkansen Line from Tokyo Station to Shin-Osaka Station, then take a subway for 13 minutes from Shin-Osaka Station to Shinsaibashi Station.

This subway is not included in JR pass right?

add on: as per your advice, i should activate my 14 days JR pass on the day i travel from Tokyo to Osaka right?

Thank you so much in advance ^^

sqinm
sqinm

Hi there!

Yes the subway is not included in the JR Pass.

Based on your itinerary you'll probably have to do a certain amount of subway travel in Osaka so it may be a good idea to get a 1 day pass. Here's a great page with more information on the various municipal subway and bus travel passes in Osaka that should help you here.

As for the activation date, I recommend you activate the 14 day pass on 30th July until the 12 of August - this will give you the maximum savings on your trip.

Hope this helps!

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mari
Expert_button_2

Alright, cleared! ^_^

Thanks, Mari.

Regards,
Lina

sqinm
sqinm

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