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Jr Pass for 7 or 14 days or no pass at all?

about 5 years ago
1 response

Hello, I am planning 13 days in Japan arriving at Narita airport the 19th of December and leaving from the same airport the 1st January.

Planning to do the following journeys:
Tokyo-Nikko return
Tokyo- Kamakura return
Kyoto-Nara return
Kyoto-Matsumoto return
Kyoto-Hiroshima return

I am also concerned about the festive period from the 28th December so not sure it is easy to use the JR Pass. Do I need to reserve every journey in advance? If it is not an issue and since museums in Tokyo can be closed I may to the trips to Nikko and Kamakura at the end of the itinerary (i.e. 29th and 30th December).
Ideally I would like stay also one night in Hakone area and 5 nights in Kyoto as a base to visit Nara, Matsumoto and Hiroshima.

How much I would spend if I only buy single return tickets for these journeys?


1951 posts
about 5 years ago
Expert button 2

Hi there!

In general, Japan will get much busier from the 30th onwards, so while your travel before then should be relatively ok I would recommend reserving seats for all your trips from the 28th-30th onwards on arrival to Japan at the JR counter (seat reservations are free for JR Pass holders).

Here's are your single ticket costs for comparison:

  1. Narita airport terminal 1 > Tokyo: ¥3,140 (62mins, 79km)
  2. Tokyo > Nikko: ¥5,630 (121mins, 150km)
  3. Nikko > Tokyo: ¥5,630 (117mins, 150km)
  4. Tokyo > Kamakura: ¥2,100 (47mins, 51km)
  5. Kamakura > Tokyo: ¥890 (54mins, 53km)
  6. Tokyo > Odawara: ¥3,840 (35mins, 83km)
  7. Odawara > Kyoto: ¥11,950 (160mins, 429km)
  8. Kyoto > Nara: ¥690 (44mins, 41km)
  9. Nara > Kyoto: ¥690 (44mins, 41km)
  10. Kyoto > Matsumoto: ¥9,680 (187mins, 335km)
  11. Matsumoto > Kyoto: ¥9,680 (210mins, 335km)
  12. Kyoto > Hiroshima: ¥10,990 (112mins, 380km)
  13. Hiroshima > Kyoto: ¥10,990 (126mins, 380km)
  14. Kyoto > Tokyo: ¥13,420 (161mins, 513km)
  15. Tokyo > Narita airport terminal 1: ¥3,140 (58mins, 79km)

JR ticket cost: ¥92,460 for 15 legs

Bear in mind that Matsumoto will be quicker to visit from Tokyo, so you may wish to use Tokyo as a base for visiting.

Hope this helps!

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