questions & answers: using the japan rail pass

traveling from hiroshima to narita international airport

Traveling from Hiroshima to Narita International Airport

My family of four plans to visit Japan in December and below is our planned itinerary: 15-Dec: Arrival in Narita International Airport at 16:30
15-Dec to 17-Dec: Sightseeing in Tokyo
18-Dec: Depart for Kyoto
18-Dec to 19-Dec: Sightseeing in Kyoto
20-Dec: Depart for Osaka
20-Dec to 21-Dec: Sightseeing in Osaka
22-Dec: Depart for Hiroshima
22-Dec to 23-Dec: Sightseeing in Hiroshima
24-Dec: Depart Hiroshima for Narita International Airport

We intend to purchase a 7-Days JR pass for this trip.

Our departure from Narita International Airport is at 17:50 on 24-Dec and as this is the first time we are visiting Japan, I appreciate if you could kindly respond to the following questions:
1) If we were to take the train departing Hiroshima at 08:05, we will arrive at Narita at 14:29. This appears to be a comfortable time; considering we will need to check in at the airport around 15:50. Please advise the best way to secure a seat without any additional payment so that we are assured of getting to Narita on time.
2) In the trip from Hiroshima to Narita, it is suggested that we take a Limited Express train. Is the cost of this ticket covered by the JR pass?
3) Based on the cities that we plan to visit, please advise whether the duration spent in each of these cities is sufficient or we should spend more time in one or two cites while reducing the time spent on other cities.

Thanks a lot.



Hi there,

You've made a very nice selection to places to visit as a fist time in Japan itinerary. The JR Pass will also be of great use. Let's have a look at the details.

1.) Hiroshima - Narita Airport is a long train ride but a pleasant one. I would advise reserving tickets the day before, this way you are secure of seating and doing this will also save time the following morning. To make seat reservation, go to any JR Station and bring your JR Pass. Then tell the staff when and where you wish to travel and they will reserve the seats for you. You could do this at any time, even at the start of the JR Pass.

2.) Yes, the Narita Express is covered by the JR Pass, this is the limited express you will have found when looking up the route.

3.) So for it looks like you have planned well. It depends what you wish to see in each city but this way you get to see something of each place. Kyoto and Osaka are only 29min apart by train, so you could stay in Kyoto all the time and just make day trips to Osaka. This is probably something I would consider, staying a day more in Kyoto and then one day trip to Osaka. This because you will already spend a good amount of time in the metropolis of Tokyo and Kyoto is much more traditional, which would bring a nice balance in your itinerary between the Hyperfast Japan of today and the more traditional way of the past.

Hope this helps,

Expert button 2

Hi Daniel-san,
Thanks very much for your response and advice.

Appreciate it and have a good day.

Best Regards


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