questions & answers: using the japan rail pass

14-day jr pass for tokyo- kyoto- nara- hakone- tokyo trip

14-day JR Pass for Tokyo- Kyoto- Nara- Hakone- Tokyo trip


We are 3 people, planning to visit Japan from 28 Apr- 8 May, 2015 with the itinerary Tokyo- Kyoto- Nara- Hakone- Tokyo; we are considering to buy 14-day JR Pass, could you please share your advise for some of the questions as below

  1. Should we take the 14-day JR Pass, how much will it save for us? When our intinerary is as below

28 Apr- 1 May: Tokyo: Shibuya- Hirajuku- Shinjuku & inside Tokyo.
1 May - 4 May: Kyoto: inside Kyoto
4 May: Nara
5- 6 May: Hakone
6- 8 May: Tokyo

  • We will pick Shinkansen for trip from Tokyo- Kyoto & Kyoto back to Tokyo.
  • Inside Tokyo: we will use mainly train
  • Inside Kyoto, Nara, Hakone: we will use both train & bus

  • For the trip to Hakone: should we take the Shinkansen from Kyoto station--> Odawara Station then take train --> Hakone? Or should we consider Bus from Kyoto --> Hakone? What transportation type saves us more time? and money?

  • What time usually Shinkansen depart in the morning? If we want to take a Shinkansen of 6:20AM, what time should we be there?

Thanks and Await for your response,

BR. Phuong


Hello Phuong,

From reading your itinerary, I'd advise a 7 day JR Pass instead of a 14 day JR Pass. This because the pass is best used when traveling cross country and you could cover most of this in 7 days, from the 1st - to the 6th of April. Travel within Tokyo is not very expansive, so just buy normal tickets there.

To travel to Hakone, take the Shinkansen from Kyoto station to Odawara station. Odawara is the gateway station to Hakone and local transport from there will get you into the area. Within Hakone you could consider the Hakone Free Pass.

As a general rule, I'd advise arriving about 15minutes at the station before departure, this will give you ample time to find the right platform and buy some refreshments if necessary. Add +5 minutes if you also need to make seat reservations.

Hope this helps,

Expert button 2

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