questions & answers: using the japan rail pass

should i get the 7 day pass?

Should I get the 7 day pass?

Hi admin,

I would like to know if I should get the 7 day pass for this itinerary:

So I will start using the pass from Day 6 to 12

Day1 -- Tokyo
Day2 -- Tokyo
Day3 -- Tokyo
Day4 -- Tokyo
Day5 -- Tokyo
Day6 -- Tokyo - Osaka
Day7 -- Osaka - Kyoto - Osaka
Day8 -- Osaka - Kobe - Osaka
Day9 -- Osaka
Day10 -- Osaka - Nara - Kyoto
Day11 -- Kyoto
Day12 -- Kyoto - Nikko - Tokyo
Day13 -- Tokyo
Day14 -- Tokyo
Day15 -- Tokyo - Tokyo Narita Airport

And just wondering if I also should get a passmo card, since I will be staying in Tokyo a lot?

Thank you.

Best regards,

Rudy

ijo
ijo

Hi,
Yes, a 7 day pass would pay off for your plans. For your Day #9 you also might take half a day and go see Himeji by bullet train. It has Japan's finest castle and increase your savings from your JR Pass.
You also have a huge amount of time for Tokyo - and perhaps 3 full days is quite enough. You might consider some side trips to Kamakura and Hakone. There are regional passes for both. And for leaving for or from the airport, you might look at a 1000 yen bus.

Best of Luck.

Toraneko
Toraneko

Hi Toraneko,

Thank you for your reply!

Rudy

ijo
ijo

You're most welcome. To answer your other question, a pasmo card is a convenient way to avoid carrying around a sackful of coins, but offers nothing in savings. You might look at a 3 day subway pass or a Keisei/Metro package.
In Tokyo a few of the best places to see are the Tsukiji Fish Market, plus the site that every last tourist goes to see, the Sensoji Temple. If you are in Tokyo on a Sunday afternoon, be sure to go visit Harajuku to see the youth with their wild fashions. Meiji Shrine and Yoyogi Park are next to it and well worth seeing also. And be sure not to miss the Shibuya Hachiko intersection especially on a weekend when it looks like half the city is crossing the street all at once.
Since you are already seeing Tokyo, you can largely skip Osaka during the day. After the temples of Kyoto close down around 5PM, you can zip over to Osaka for the evening. At night the city comes alive and has some great places to see, such as Dotonbori, plus the night views from the Umeda Sky Bldg, and Abeno Harukas Bldg are wonderful.
In Kyoto you could spend weeks there and not see everything. The three best sights though are the Kinkakuji Temple, Kiyomizudera Temple, and Fushimi Inari Shrine. Fushimi is the most time consuming; you could spend a couple of hours to over half a day if you want to romp over all the trails. And the Otagi Nenbutsuji is one of the most humorous and whimsical places you could visit in Japan - well worth visiting, even for kids.
Nara is often neglected by some tourists, which is a shame. Missing the Todaiji Great Buddha would be a tragedy. Nara Park has a lot of other great places, such as Kasuga Shrine, Kofukuji Temple, and feeding the many deer in the area. A few other great places missed out even by those who go to Nara though are the Isuienand Yoshikien Gardens. They are gorgeous and not crowded at all.
In addition, there are other numerous great places you can visit in the area. Okayama is not far and it is famous for its castle, plus Korakuen, one of Japan's Top 3, and also the Handayama Garden. If you'd like to get off the beaten trail for a while, the half day hike up to Konpirasan in Kotohira is stunning. Going to Takamatsu is also nice - it has one of Japan's finest gardens also, called Ritsurin.
Hiroshima also has a number of good places. Miyajima is the most famous, and aside from Hiroshima itself, Onomichi with its temple tour and Kosanji Temple is spectacular. Just beyond Miyajima also lies Iwakuni with its historical bridge and castle on top of the mountain. Hagi is also charming and very relaxing - with a lot of history and largely ignored by the tourist crowds. Hagi Castle was actually delightful, and the preserved samurai district and Mori related temples a rarity. One of the very best is the Akiyoshi Limestone Cave, a 300 million year old wonder with huge caverns and underground river running through it.
All in all, a lot more to explore and enjoy.

Toraneko
Toraneko

Hi Toraneko,

Thank you for the information!!

For the Tokyo 3-day subway pass, is it possible to purchase this pass more than once? For example I use the first 3-day pass for day1-3, then the 2nd pass i use it for day12-14?

ijo
ijo

Hi,
I don't see why not. Their info has no restriction on the number of passes you can buy (so long as the times don't overlap).

Toraneko
Toraneko

Hii Toraneko,

I have more questions:

  1. Since I will be using the JR Pass not from day 1, What is the best way to get to the city from the Haneda Airport to the city? I will land past 22:00, so I won't be able to buy the Tokyo Metro Pass because the office is closed? or are they stiil open?

  2. What are the differences between pasmo card and suica card?

Thanks again!

ijo
ijo

Hi,
Unfortunately the office to exchange your voucher for the pass will have closed by then for the day. A listing of where you can exchange the vouchers and their hours is here. Since getting into Tokyo will be paid out of pocket, there are faster ways to get into Tokyo than if you were just taking JR, such as the Keikyu trains.

You can see regular fares, routes and schedules on Hyperdia.

The pasmo and suica cards are both usable, so whichever you have it should be fine.

Toraneko
Toraneko

Order your Japan Rail Pass Online

Starting from $254.00 for 7 days of unlimited Japan Rail travel

Please note: we are only able to handle order related enquiries via our online direct support. Commercial advertising is prohibited as per our website terms.