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7 or 14 day JR Pass and city metro passes

almost 4 years ago
2 responses

Hi Daniel-san,
We are both seniors (62 and 67) and are planning our first upcoming 14-days trip to Japan on April 14-27.
For the trip, we plan to go to Sendai to visit with an elderly couple friends, and do some sight seeing in Tokyo and Kyoto.
Could you kindly comment on our itinerary and help us decide if it would be beneficial to purchase a 14-days JR pass or 7-days JR pass? Or purchase separate passes between Tokyo – Sendai, Tokyo – Kyoto?
Also, we would appreciate it if you could give suggestions regarding the itinerary or places you would recommend we visit in each city. For our last four days in Tokyo, perhaps to include a day trip to Hakone/Mt Fuji? Is there discount for seniors travelling in Japan?
Day 01 – Mon Apr 14: Arrival Tokyo (Narita) 15:25 >Tokyo (Hotel)
Day 02 – Tue Apr 15: Tokyo (sight seeing)
Day 03 – Wed Apr 16: Tokyo (sight seeing)
Day 04 – Wed Apr 17: Tokyo > Sendai (Hotel)
Day 05 – Thur Apr 18: Sendai (sight seeing)
Day 06 – Fri Apr 19: Sendai (sight seeing)
Day 07 – Sat Apr 20: Sendai > Kyoto (Hotel)
Day 08 – Sun Apr 21: Kyoto (sight seeing)
Day 09 – Mon Apr 22: Kyoto (sight seeing)
Day 10 – Tue Apr 23: Kyoto > Tokyo (Hotel)\
Day 11 – Wed Apr 24: Tokyo (sight seeing)
Day 12 – Thur Apr 26: Tokyo (sight seeing)
Day 13 – Fri Apr 26: Tokyo (sight seeing)
Day 14 – Sat Apr 27: Tokyo (Narita) 18:05 > to home
Do we have to buy additional metro subway passes for Tokyo/Sendai/Kyoto in each city? Much thanks.

12232 posts
almost 4 years ago
Expert button 2

Hi there!

Let's have a look at ticket normal ticket prices first and see if a JR Pass could be of use.

Narita Airport - Tokyo ¥ 2,940
Tokyo - Sendai ¥ 10,890
Sendai - Kyoto ¥ 21,680
Kyoto - Tokyo ¥ 13,520
Tokyo Narita Airport ¥ 2,940

This adds up to ¥ 51,970. Using a JR Pass be it a 7 day or 14 day pass will certainly give you great savings. There's are two options you could consider one would be to buy a 7 day JR Pass and use it from day 4-10 and cover your most expansive travel with it. A 7 day JR Pass is ¥ 28,300, this way you would make ¥ 17,790 in savings.

The other option would be to buy a 14 day JR Pass and use it for all your travel from day 1-14. A 14 day JR Pass is 45,100yen so you'd make at least ¥ 6,870. The nice thing about this option is that you can also use the JR Pass for local trains in Tokyo which cover most of the city and your savings would probably end up a lot higher! You also just need one ticket for all your travel, which can be very convenient.

You could also include a day trip from Tokyo, popular places include Yokohama, Kamakura and my personal favorite Nikko. All these places can be reached by the JR Pass, and I would certainly recommend a visit to Nikko if you have a free day.

Tokyo itself has a lot to offer and there's so much that it is hard to make a selection, I would recommend taking a look at THIS website to see some possibilities.

The group of people that general have the most money in Japan are senior citizen and it is rare to see a discount for seniors. The same applies for travel in Japan, do keep in mind though that the JR Pass already is a heavenly discounted ticket and you can make Japanese nationals very jealous with one.

I hope this helps!

2 posts
almost 4 years ago

Hi Daniel san,
First of all, let me say, you are indeed heaven sent to first timers to Japan trying to navigate by JR pass.. Thank you for your insight & good suggestions. We are thinking of getting the 14-days JR pass and focus places to visit in the Tohoku Sendai Sapporo area and a handful of days in Tokyo. It is desirable to get the Green pass for easy reservations as we are slow walkers? Is there any Nozomi train to Tohoku area? How much extra do we have to pay for the Nazomi train using the JR Green pass? Thank you kindly.

12232 posts
almost 4 years ago
Expert button 2

Hi Blee,

Sounds like a good plan! The Nozomi equivalent in Tohoku is the Hayabusa/Super Komachi train service. These trains are covered by the JR Pass and don't require an additional fee. Green class in these trains is especially nice and you even get a complimentary drink, so I'd heartily recommend going for Green Class if you have the possibility.

Between Tokyo - Kyoto you can't use the Nozomi but you can use the Hikari instead, this is exactly the same type of train but this one makes a couple more stops on the way. You honestly won't notice the difference.

Hope this helps too!

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