questions & answers: general japan travel

reserving seats last minutes- night trains

Reserving Seats Last Minutes- Night Trains

My friend and I are arriving in Japan only 12 hours before our first schedule train, the Akebono night train from Tokyo to Aomori, and we have purchased JR Passes so the Goron-to-shito should be free but thing is we can't reserve our seats until we arrive and we actually go to a JR office.

Is there a way to get around this problem? Should we even worry or would a seat like that in a train like that on May 24th be booked out 12hours before it leaves?


Hi there!

May the 24th is a Thursday, so it is likely there will be room on the Akebono for you to travel. However, as you correctly point out there is not way for you to easily reserve your places before you arrive (unfortunately jr pass holders can only reserve seats in person with the rail pass in Japan).

As a back up, how about investigating other optons to get to Aomori, such as via a night bus? there are seats available for ¥7000. You should be able to to monitor the availability before you arrive in Japan as a guide.

Hope this helps, but it's a very tricky area!

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