questions & answers: using the japan rail pass

should we purchase a jr pass?

Should we purchase a JR pass?


We are traveling to Japan for the first time and would like to know if we should purchase a 7 day JR pass for our trip. Here is our itinerary:

Day 1 - Arrive at KIX, Osaka July 7, 2015. 6:15 p.m. To Swissotel, Osaka (Namba Station)

Day 2 - Osaka

Day 3 - Osaka

Day 4 - Osaka to Kyoto & back to Osaka (BULLET TRAIN)

Day 5 - Osaka to Tokyo (Namba Station to Suidobashi Station) BULLET TRAIN

Day 6 - Tokyo

Day 7 - Tokyo

Day 8 - Tokyo

Day 9 - Tokyo to Narita Airport (Suidobashi Station to Narita International Airport) BULLET TRAIN

We plan on going to Shibuya, Shinjuku, Ikebukuru and Harajuku while we're in Tokyo and just going around Osaka. Is it worth purchasing a 7-day JR Pass? Also, any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.





A JR Pass would not pay off for your itinerary. You could get regular rail tickets to make it up to Tokyo or you could fly up on a cheap air ticket on Jet Star or Peach. It's also unclear why you'd spend most of your time seeing Osaka, which is mostly just a clone of Tokyo. Kyoto and Nara are the cultural jewels of Japan and worth most of your time while in the area. Since you are already seeing Tokyo, you can largely skip Osaka during the day. After the temples of Kyoto close down around 5PM, you can zip over to Osaka for the evening. At night the city comes alive and has some great places to see, such as Dotonbori, plus the night views from the Umeda Sky Bldg, and Abeno Harukas Bldg are wonderful.
For Tokyo, if you want to visit Harajuku (plus Meiji Shrine and Yoyogi Park close by), a Sunday afternoon is best if you can, in order to see the youth with their wild fashions.

Good luck!


Mahalo Nui Loa for your response and great suggestions. We really appreciate it and look forward to a wonderful time in Japan!



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