questions & answers: using the japan rail pass

planning itinerary using jr pass

Planning itinerary using JR Pass


Can anyone advise me on how to plan my travel routes so that I can maximise my JR Pass usage? I understand that Hyperdia is a good tool, but how do I filter the results so that it only shows routes covered by the JP Pass? Are there any other tools that I can use to check if my routes are covered by the JP Pass?

Many thanks in advance.


The 7 JR companies used to be the government owned rail company, so they went to nearly every major city and town in the country. If it has a popular tourist area, probably you can get there on JR. But if you want to check if you can get there on a JR line or not, it is very easy on Hyperdia - you simply click on "More Options" and uncheck "Private Railway". If you do a search and the rail line appears in purple, then you also know it is not JR. Note however that there are a few cases where you can get from one place to another on JR (such as 2 places divided by mountains) but that is not always the fastest route. It may in fact be better in a few cases to pay for a bus to get you there faster to save several hours of time - this is sometimes the case in Nagano, for example.

Best of luck.


Hi there,

Hyperdia is a great tool to find routes usable by the JR Pass. However it does take a bit of time to learn. We have a detailed explanation for you HERE.

Additionally you can use this great interactive map to find routes covered.

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