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How to Best Use a 7-day pass over 9 Days

about 12 years ago
2 responses

Hi Mari,
My husband & I are traveling from the U.S. to visit our son who is a student in Tokyo. While there, the three of us want to travel outside of Tokyo to see other parts of the country. Here's are tentative itinerary.

3/23/12 Travel from Narita to Tokyo
3/24/12 Spend day seeing Tokyo sights
3/25/12 Daytrip, Tokyo to Nikko
3/26/12 Daytrip, Tokyo to Kamakura
3/27/12 Bullet train to Kyoto for 3 days
3/28/12 Day in and around Kyoto
3/29/12 Daytrip, Kyoto to Nara
3/30/12 Kyoto to Tokyo for 1 night
3/31/12 Tokyo to Narita Airport for departure

Since our son is a student living in Tokyo, he doesn't qualify for the JR Rail Pass. He has a student pass for the Tokyo subway but will need tickets for Japan Rail. Do you offer student discounts? How much can we expect to pay for tickets for our itinerary? I am thinking my husband & I would buy a 7-day pass & use it 3/25 - 3/31. We'd have to get individual tickets the first couple of days we are there.

Any help/suggestions would be most appreciated :-)

Thanks so much.... Shea

1950 posts
about 12 years ago

Hi there,

Here are the costs for your itinerary:

  1. Narita airport terminal 1 > Tokyo: ¥2740, (62mins, 79km)
  2. Tokyo > Nikko: ¥5230, (121mins, 150km)
  3. Nikko > Tokyo: ¥5230, (117mins, 150km)
  4. Tokyo > Kamakura: ¥1700, (47mins, 51km)
  5. Kamakura > Tokyo: ¥1700, (47mins, 51km)
  6. Tokyo > Kyoto: ¥13020, (165mins, 513km)
  7. Kyoto > Nara: ¥690, (49mins, 41km)
  8. Nara > Kyoto: ¥690, (46mins, 41km)
  9. Kyoto > Tokyo: ¥13020, (161mins, 513km)
  10. Tokyo > Narita airport terminal 1: ¥2740, (58mins, 79km)

TOTAL: ¥45950 for 10 legs

I agree with you and recommend starting your 7 day pass on the 25th. You can also save money on your first few days by buying the [Narita Express and Tokyo Metro combined travel package] when you arrive in Japan. This way you will receive around ¥1500 in free metro travel - more than enough for day 2 I think!

I'm afraid that there are no student discount available for JR Passes, and you are right that your sons visa status would prevent him from using one. If your son wants to travel with you I'm afraid you will have to pay the standard fare.

As a suggestion, how about asking your son to take the highway bus for the most expensive legs of your journey (Tokyo>Kyoto)? The highway bus ticket between Tokyo and Kyoto can be purchased for around ¥5000. While the bus will take much longer, there are certainly savings to be made.

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

Looks like a lovely trip - have a great time!

2 posts
about 12 years ago

Mari... thanks so much for your speedy reply. You've been a big help!!

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