questions & answers: using the japan rail pass

how to get to hakone and kyoto

How to get to Hakone and Kyoto

Hi there, just a couple of questions ...

  • Last time i was in Japan, we bought tickets to go on Shinkansen from Tokyo to Osaka. If we have the JR pass this time, do we still have to go to the ticket office and get tickets there? I understand the pass doesn't cover Nozomi, and that's fine. Reason for this question is for the local system eg. Yamanote line, you just flash your pass when you pass through the special barrier, but i wonder if you do the same with Shinkansen or you need to book tickets

  • What is the best way to get to Hakone? I understand this part of the trip doesn't involve Shinkansen, again do i just flash my pass?

Thanks, Lee-Adama


Hi Lee-Adama,

1.) With the JR Pass you can either use reserved or non reserved seats on the Shinkansen. I would recommend making seat reservation as it just makes traveling more relaxed and convenient. However you can also just wave your pass at the JR Staff and hop on any train you like (except the Nozomi of course).

2.) The best way to get to Hakone with the JR Pass is to ride the Shinkansen from Tokyo to Odawara station, this is the gateway station for Hakone and directly on the route Tokyo - Kyoto, so it makes for a great stopover. Inside Hakone you may have to resort to local transport methods not covered by the JR Pass. Consider buying a Hakone Free Pass for this.

I hope this helps!

Expert button 2

Thanks so much!


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