questions & answers: using the japan rail pass

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Hi there! I'm going to visit Japan for the first time and I wanted to get some advice regarding travel passes.
Thank you so much for your time! =)

My itinerary is such:
Arrive at Narita and immediately travel to Osaka and station there for next 5 nights - 1 April
We are using Osaka as our base and making day trips.
2nd April, we'll visit Kyoto then head back to Osaka.
We'll travel within Kyoto
3rd April, we'll visit Kyoto again and head back to Osaka
4th April we'll visit Nara and then explore Osaka
5th April we'll explore Osaka; travel within Osaka
6th April we'll travel from Osaka to Tokyo and stay there for the next 4 nights
7th-9th April we'll travel around Tokyo
10th April We'll travel to Narita from Tokyo

In light of this, which is the best pass for us and should we get a JR pass or JR West Pass and also the Suica+ N'ex card?
How about for travel within Osaka and Kyoto?
I'd appreciate your help on this as I'm confused by the many lines available in Japan ;)

thimah
thimah

Hello!

Japan can seem somewhat mid-boggling when you first see all the train lines, companies, passes and so on. Luckily it all starts making sense pretty quickly once you start looking at routes.

A 7 day JR Pass would suit your travel very well, since you travel the route Narita Airport - Osaka - Kyoto - Tokyo within 7 days. Travel between these places is completely covered by the JR Pass making for very convenient travel.

Fro travel around Tokyo you could consider buying a Suica card, this is a prepaid travel card which you can use to travel around by swiping it over the ticket gate when you enter and exit the station.

Did you know that we also have an interactive map which you can use to look up all train routes covered and get an idea of distances?

Hope this helps and let me know if I can help with anything!
Daniel

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Daniel-san
Expert_button_2

Thank you so much for your prompt response, Daniel! :)
You have been very helpful indeed. So I can use the JR pass for buses, etc within Kyoto, Osaka too?
And only on JR lines or other operaters too? That's the part I'm still confused about - i.e other than JR lines whereelse I can use the pass.

Also, you were saying I could get the Suica card, would that suffice or do I get the Suica + N'ex card one way package since I need to make a trip from Tokyo to Narita on my day of departure?

Thank you in advance! =)
Thimah

thimah
thimah

Hi Thimah,

Most buses around Kyoto and Osaka are not included, so it's better to expect that they are not, however it is of course nice to find out when one is ;) Travel on JR lines within Tokyo and Osaka run throughout the entire city and are more than enough to get around in most cases. There are some train companies, mainly in more remote area's, that are not part of the JR Network and require a normal ticket. For instance you may encounter the Fujikyu rail line to Fuji-san if you want to visit the mountain, this is one example which is not included. Judging from your plans, I don't think that you will have to use one.

For the Suica card, just buy the card. The NEX package is nice if you also require a ticket on the Narita Express but this will already be covered for you with the JR Pass and there's no package for just a ticket Tokyo - Narita + Suica card.
Even so the Suica card will come in very handy and you could even use it to pay for your ticket back to the airport on the last day!

Hope this helps too!
Daniel

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

Thank you so much Daniel, you have been excellent and timely help!
I've one more question for you :D

I am planning a day trip to Mt Fuji so my itinerary will now look as such:
Arrive at Narita and immediately travel to Osaka and station there for next 5 nights - 1 April
We are using Osaka as our base and making day trips.
2nd April, we'll visit Kyoto then head back to Osaka.
We'll travel within Kyoto
3rd April, we'll visit Kyoto again and head back to Osaka
4th April we'll visit Nara and then explore Osaka
5th April we'll explore Osaka; travel within Osaka
6th April we'll travel from Osaka to Tokyo and stay there for the next 4 nights
7th-8th April we'll travel around Tokyo
9th April Daytrip to Mt Fuji
10th April We'll travel to Narita from Tokyo

Since my 7day pass would have expired by 9th April, do you think I should move my Mt Fuji day trip around or just get one day tickets..What;'s the best commute plan from Shibuya to My Fuji?

Thank you for your advice, in advance!

thimah
thimah

Hi Again!

Excuse the late replay, it's been a hectic day over here.

For visiting Fuji, it is actually best to visit Fuji as a day trip from Tokyo (instead of stopping somewhere on the way). Many places around Fuji are best reached directly from Tokyo, such as Fuji Five Lakes and Kawaguchiko. There are express buses from leave each hour from Tokyo or Shinjuku station, starting at only 1,700yen.

Hope this helps!
Daniel

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

it does, thank you so much! Will be buying my 7-day JR Pass today!

thimah
thimah

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