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Will I need a 14 days rail pass? how do i Book tickets online?

over 5 years ago
2 responses

Hi, for the following itinerary, would you recommend a 7 or 14 days train pass?
Also, how do i book the trains online? can i do them before validating the pass at arrival? Specially the one on the way back to Tokyo as I cant miss teh way back :)
Many thanks

days 1-2 : Tokyo
day 3 - tokyo: > Kamakura - > Tokyo
day 4 - tokyo : > Nikko- > Tokyo
Day 5 : Tokyo
Day 6 -7 : Kyoto
Day 8 : Kyoto -> Nara - Kyoto
Day 9 - Kyoto
Day 10 - Kyoto -> Mijajima - > Hiroshima
Day 11 - Hiroshima - Tokyo

1951 posts
over 5 years ago
Expert button 2

Hi there,

Here are the costs for your travel (assuming arrival at Tokyo Narita Airport):

  1. Narita airport terminal 1 > Tokyo: ¥3140, (62mins, 79km)
  2. Tokyo > Kamakura: ¥2100, (47mins, 51km)
  3. Kamakura > Tokyo: ¥890, (54mins, 53km)
  4. Tokyo > Nikko: ¥5630, (121mins, 150km)
  5. Nikko > Tokyo: ¥5630, (117mins, 150km)
  6. Tokyo > Kyoto: ¥13420, (164mins, 513km)
  7. Kyoto > Nara: ¥690, (44mins, 41km)
  8. Nara > Kyoto: ¥690, (44mins, 41km)
  9. Kyoto > Hiroshima: ¥10990, (112mins, 380km)
  10. Hiroshima > Miyajimaguchi: ¥400, (26mins, 21km)
  11. Miyajimaguchi > Tokyo: ¥17850, (331mins, 916km)
  12. Tokyo > Narita airport terminal 1: ¥3140, (58mins, 79km)

JR ticket cost: ¥64570 for 12 legs

  • 14 day rail pass (¥45,100) saving: ¥19470

As you can see, you'll make good savings on travel with a 14 day Japan Rail Pass so I can certainly recommend this option as the "stress free" option.

7 day rail pass plus tickets

If you didn't mind altering your itinerary a little, you could move your Nikko trip to day 5, and then activate a 7 day rail pass from day 5-11. For the first 4 days, you could purchase tickets as needed, including the Narita Express + Suica travel card deal, which will get you into Tokyo from Narita and also give you ¥1500 of free metro or JR travel. You may also like to look into the various Tokyo Metro 1 and 2 day travel passes which are also available to purchase at Narita Airport.

Booking online

Currently, you cannot book any of your trips online in English and can only make free seat reservations in Japan on presentation of your JR Pass. Despite this, I don't think you'll have any problems with booking a seat as there is normally plenty of availability. If you are concerned about this, I recommend you place all your reservations on arrival in Japan as soon as you have exchanged your JR Pass.

Hope this helps!

2 posts
over 5 years ago

Thanks a lot!

The idea to change is actually good. will that save me money?
And btw, just to confirm, with JR pass all the tickets are covered, I mean trains and metro in the city center. Correct?
Many thanks again!

1951 posts
over 5 years ago
Expert button 2

Hi there,

I think it will save you money based on your current itinerary, however don't forget that you'll also loose some flexibility for this period.

The JR Pass covers all JR operated lines. In Tokyo there are many JR lines which you can use, however in other cities, the JR coverage is not so comprehensive and you will need to use the non-JR operated metro/subway systems. From your itinerary I'd expect you to need to purchase non-JR tickets in Kyoto, Nara and Hiroshima which will be around ¥100-200 per ride.

Hope this helps!

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