A comprehensive Japan rail pass nation guide for first-time travellers, who are intending to buy the Japan rail pass but not sure if it is suitable for them or what to do after purchasing it. Here are some of the necessary information that might be useful with a step by step guide and also some of the things to note before you purchase the pass.
Japan Rail Pass (Nation)
Who should buy Japan Rail Pass?
Japan rail pass nation is only suitable for traveller who needs to cover more places within a week or more. Most of the common route or plan that most traveller will do is travelling from Tokyo to Osaka, as one trip is about 13,620JPY for an unreserved seat so if you are going to do a roundabout or stopping in between to Mt Fuji. I think that it would worth the money however, JR pass has its own downside, do note of what is inclusive and not inclusive from the pass.
**Simple Japanese Language Session **
指定席 (Shitei-seki): Reserved seat
自由席 (Jiyuu-seki): Non-Reserved seat
Things to note
– Have to use the side entrance, to show the pass to the train station staff
– Japan rail pass (Nation Wide) could not be purchased within Japan, please proceed to your country’s assigned agency to purchase the ticket or online purchasing. (Which I have provided below)
– Not to peel off the cover of the pass
– This pass is only exclusive for tourist/ foreigner
– It is to make travelling within Japan less costly
- All JR Shinkansen, Limited Express, Express, Rapid, local trains, and the BRT (with some exceptions)
- Tokyo Monorail
- Aoimori Railway between Aomori and Hachinohe, Aomori and Noheji, and Hachinohe and Nohej
- IR Ishikawa Railway between Kanazawa and Tsubata
- Ainokaze Toyama Railway between Toyama and Takaoka
- Local JR Buses: JR Hokkaido Bus, JR Bus Tohoku, JR Bus Kanto, JR Tokai Bus, West Japan JR Bus, Chugoku JR Bus, JR Shikoku Bus, JR Kyushu Bus
- JR-West Miyajima Ferry
Not Inclusive Of:
- Reserved or non-reserved seat on Nozomi and Mizuho trains
- JR Bus Express Bus Routes
- Hydrofoil ferry service operated by JR-Kyushu between Hakata and Busan (South Korea)
Where it covers?
Step by step guide
Step 1: Where to buy?
Offline (Stores/ Branch/ Outlet in Singapore)
Purchase in Japan
Tourist who is a visitor from aboard under the entry status of “Temporary Visitor” are now able to purchase the pass in Japan until March 31, 2020, however, it will cost more than what you can get in your own country.
For more information visit: Japan Rail Pass Sold in Japan
Japan Rail Pass comes in 7 days, 14 days and 21 days
*Rates are in Japanese Yen**
Source: JR Rail Pass official web
Prices will vary because of the exchange rate and also some company or agency will charge a delivery fee or handling fee.
I will always compare the prices from 2 or 3 company to see whether there will be a huge difference in price or not, last time I bought my pass from JTB, Japan rail pass and for the recent trip I bought my ticket from KLOOK since it does not charge me the delivery fee.
Step 2: Where to exchange?
Once enter Japan, visit any of the JR offices located in airports and main train stations to present your Exchange Order with your passport to redeem the JR Pass.
Click here to know about the location and information of the JR office.
Step 3: How to exchange?
Present the voucher (Below) that you have received from the vendor or travel agency that you have purchased from together with your passport.
You will be asked to fill in your details on the pass and enter the station at the side entrance to activate your pass.
The staff will stamp a date at the side. It is the date you activate the pass.
Step 4: Seat Reservation (*Optional)
Reservation of seat is not mandatory and subject to availability. Some of the train types might not have reserved seat cabin, for instance, the normal JR subway line in Tokyo.
Head down to any Travel Service Center or a Reservation Office (Midori-no-madoguchi)/ JR Ticket Office at a JR station, or to the sales office of a JR-associated travel agency.
Once you have made a reservation the staff from the Midori-no madoguchi there a red stamp will be indicated on the reserved seat issued. For this JR pass, there is no limit of how many times you are able to reserve a seat.
A reserved seat ticket will also be issued, it will have the car and seat you are to go to. Please do not lose this ticket as sometimes the train conductor will come over to check.
From Kansai airport to the city.
Reserved seat car
If you want to know more about other Japan transportation guide, do visit my other post.