questions & answers: general japan travel

which pass package should i buy?

Which Pass Package should I buy?

Hi JRPass Friends, I will be traveling Japan with my wife & 4 yr old son from 24 Jan 2012 till 6 Feb 2012. Can you give me some advice how should I buy the pass package?
The itinerary as follow:
25 Jan: Train from Narita Airport to Shinjuku.
26 Jan: By Train/Bus around Tokyo central.
27 Jan: Train to Nagano, to Yamanouchi.
28 Jan: Train from Nagano to Nagoya, to Furukawa, to Shirakawago.
30 Jan: Train from Furukawa to Nagoya, to Kyoto.
31 Jan – 1 Feb: By Train/Bus around Kyoto.
1 Feb: Train from Kyoto to Tokyo.
2 – 3 Feb: By Train/Bus around Tokyo central.
4 Feb: Train to Disneyland.
5 Feb: Train to Ghibli Museum.
6 Feb: Train to Narita Airport.
Thank you for your help.
Best regards, Benjamin

Hi Benjamin,

Looking at your itinerary, you'll be in Japan for 13 days. Lets take a look at your itinerary and see if the cost of tickets is greater than either a 7 day rail pass, or 14 day rail pass.

  1. Narita airport terminal 1 > Shinjuku(jr): ¥2910, (87mins, 89km)
  2. Shinjuku(jr) > Tokyo: ¥190, (14mins, 10km)
  3. Tokyo > Shinjuku(jr): ¥190, (15mins, 10km)
  4. Shinjuku(jr) > Nagano: ¥6720, (114mins, 219km)
  5. Nagano > Nagoya: ¥6930, (180mins, 250km)
  6. Nagoya > Takayama: ¥5670, (150mins, 166km)
  7. Takayama > Nagoya: ¥5670, (145mins, 166km)
  8. Nagoya > Kyoto: ¥5240, (37mins, 147km)
  9. Kyoto > Tokyo: ¥13020, (161mins, 513km)
  10. Tokyo > Shinjuku(jr): ¥190, (15mins, 10km)
  11. Shinjuku(jr) > Tokyo: ¥190, (14mins, 10km)
  12. Tokyo > Tokyo disneyland station: ¥190, (14mins, 10km)
  13. Tokyo disneyland station > Tokyo: ¥190, (14mins, 10km)
  14. Tokyo > Mitaka: ¥380, (33mins, 24km)
  15. Mitaka > Tokyo: ¥380, (35mins, 24km)
  16. Tokyo > Narita airport terminal 1: ¥2740, (58mins, 79km)

TOTAL: ¥50800 for 16 legs

Please note that couldn't work out what you mean by "Furukawa", so I substituted Takayama (which is a nice spot too!). Also, I added 2 JR trips for the days in Tokyo when you'll be travelling around. Also, please note that you can get the bus from Takayama to Shirakawago here, but it is a non-JR service so is an additional charge.

Based on your costs you'll certainly save money by using either a 7 or 14 day rail pass, but as all your main travel costs happen between the 27th Jan and 1st Feb, I recommend you buy a 7 day pass for activation on either the 26th or 27th and pay for your other tickets separately.

This will give you an overall cost of:

¥28,300 (7 day rail pass) + ¥7360 (separate rail tickets) = ¥35,660

(for comparison, a 14 day rail pass is ¥45,100 and all separate is ¥50,800).

Also, as your son is under 6, he can travel for free on the JR system as long as he doesn't occupy a seat if the train is busy.

Hope this helps and you have a great trip!

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