questions & answers: using the japan rail pass

is a jr pass worth it?

Is a JR Pass Worth it?

I'm planning a trip and am not sure if the JR Pass will save me money compared to buying each individual train ticket. Here is my planned trip:

Narita Airport -> Tokyo -> Numazu -> Kyoto -> Osaka -> Numazu -> Narita Airport

I know that for Numazu I will have to pay for a private train that is not part of the JR line and will then have to connect to a JR line to get to the other cities/prefectures. So not sure if the JR Pass will save me much with this itinerary. Also, can a foreigner purchase JR Passes for people that already live in Japan?


Hi there!

Normally a 7 day Japan Rail Pass costs roughly the same as a return trip from Tokyo to Osaka. So as you are including the Narita legs I'm fairly sure a 7 day pass will be worth it. Also, I think you can get to Numazu by JR from Osaka, at least according to Hyperdia (itinerary), so I will include that also in your costs:

  1. Narita airport terminal 1 > Tokyo: ¥2940, (62mins, 79km)
  2. Tokyo > Numazu: ¥4400, (63mins, 126km)
  3. Numazu > Kyoto: ¥10790, (131mins, 398km)
  4. Kyoto > Osaka: ¥540, (28mins, 42km)
  5. Osaka > Numazu: ¥12060, (161mins, 441km)
  6. Numazu > Narita airport terminal 1: ¥7420, (145mins, 205km)

TOTAL: ¥38150 for 6 legs

From these costs, as a 7 day rail pass is ¥28,300 you will make a minimum saving of ¥9850 with a rail pass over standard tickets.

The Japan Rail Pass is only valid for non-Japanese who are in Japan on a Temporary Visitor visa while in Japan (eg, student visa and so on are not valid), or for Japanese who are living overseas or who have a non-Japanese spouse. You can find full validity details here.

Hope this helps!

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