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Written by Akshaya Manoharan on May 25, 2023 Share on

Japan Rail Pass – A Descriptive Guide

Railways is the best transportation mode for a convenient as well as for a budget travel experience in Japan. The Japanese government provide the Japan Rail Pass which is basically for tourism purposes. With high-end transportation, Japan is renowned for its convenient railway network. Nevertheless, what is important is the cost. Japan is an expensive country, therefore spending on trains would be a major problem. With the Japan Rail Pass, one can cut down on major expenses. Continue reading the entire article to learn everything about Japan Tourism and the JR Pass.

Japan Rail Pass Cost

Below is a table with the cost of Jr pass price in INR (Indian Rupee)

TypeOrdinary Class Ordinary Class First ClassFirst Class
DurationAdultChildAdult Child
7 daysRs 17581Rs 8789Rs 23485Rs 11739
14 days Rs 28017Rs 14008Rs 38007Rs 19005
21 daysRs 35843Rs 17922Rs 49436Rs 24723
Japan Rail Pass Cost

What is a Jr Rail Pass?

After seeing the price details mentioned above, you might have a couple of questions in your mind. Let us first understand what the Japan Rail Pass is all about. A Japan Rail pass is an easy pass that makes traveling convenient for tourists exploring Japan. This Jr Pass provides tickets at a discounted price for both ordinary and first class travelers. The Japan Railways provides this benefit so as to ensure that tourists have a hassle free and budget friendly train journey to explore the beauty of Japan.

This Pass offers unlimited access to a wide range of transportation options operated by the Japan Railways (JR) Group. This includes the famous Shinkansen bullet trains, with the exception of the “NOZOMI” and “MIZUHO” trains. The pass also covers limited express trains, express trains, and local trains throughout the JR network. Additionally, the BRT (Bus Rapid Transit System) services also come under the JR pass.

Destinations the Japan Rail Pass Covers

The JR Pass covers majority of Japan’s destinations. Here is a list of popular destinations that you can explore with the JR Pass.


Please keep in mind that this is not the complete list, and the JR Pass covers many more destinations throughout Japan. When planning a trip, it’s always a good idea to double-check the specific train lines and routes covered by the JR Pass.


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Regional Japan Rail Pass

There are regional jr passes that are segregated based on regions of Japan. If you are planning to cover one part of Japan, you can choose the pass accordingly. These passes are designed for travelers who plan to explore a specific region of Japan exclusively. Here are some examples of regional JR Passes.

1. Hokkaido Rail Pass:

This pass allows unlimited travel on JR Hokkaido trains within the Hokkaido region, including popular destinations such as Sapporo, Hakodate, and Furano.

2. Kansai Area Pass:

This pass covers the Kansai region, which includes cities such as Kyoto, Osaka, Nara, Kobe, and Himeji. It provides unlimited travel on JR trains and buses in the area.

3. Kanto Area Pass:

The Kanto region, which includes Tokyo and its surrounding areas such as Yokohama, Nikko, and the Fuji Five Lakes region, is covered by this pass.

4. Kyushu Rail Pass:

This pass allows unlimited JR train travel within the Kyushu region, including Fukuoka, Nagasaki, Kumamoto, and Beppu.

5. JR East Pass:

This pass covers the Nagano and Niigata regions, providing access to popular snow resorts in the area as well as Nagano, Niigata, and Matsumoto.

These regional passes typically offer flexibility and cost savings for tourists who plan to focus on exploring a specific region.At the same time it is important to check the coverage and validity of each regional pass, as they may have specific restrictions on certain train routes.

How to buy a Japan Rail (Jr) Pass

Buying a Jr Pass is a simple process.

To purchase a Japan Rail Pass, you need to follow these steps:

  • Check your eligibility: The JR Pass is available to foreign tourists visiting Japan on a “Temporary Visitor” visa. Make sure to meet the eligibility requirements.
  • Choose a pass type: The JR Pass is available in a variety of lengths (7, 14, or 21 days) and classes (Ordinary or Green). Decide which pass type suits your travel.
  • Purchase

Ways to Purchase the JR Pass

Purchasing the JP Pass is so simple

  1. Online: Go to the official website of a JR Pass authorized seller, such as Japan Rail Pass ( or Japan Experience ( Fill in the required information, choose a pass type, and pay. You will recieve the pass to the address you have specified.
  2. Authorized resellers: JR Passes are also issued by authiorized travel agencies and travel operators around the world. To purchase the pass, visit their office or contact them.
  3. Exchange offices in Japan: In some cases, you can purchase the JR Pass after you arrive in Japan. However, please note that this option is only available for travelers entering Japan with a “Temporary Visitor” visa, and the pass is sold at a higher price compared to purchasing it outside of Japan.
  • If you purchase the JR Pass online or through an authorized reseller, you will receive an exchange order or voucher for the actual pass. Bring your exchange order and passport to a designated JR Pass exchange office located in major airports or train stations once you arrive in Japan. They will check the eligibility and issue you the actual JR Pass.

Activating the JR Pass

  • Activate the pass: The JR Pass must be activated before it can be used. The pass will be stamped with the activation date as per your travel plans at the JR Pass exchange office.
  • Using the pass: Once activated, you can use the JR Pass to travel on eligible trains throughout Japan, including shinkansen (bullet trains) and many other JR-operated trains. When entering or exiting the stations, show your pass to station staff and use the designated JR Pass gates.

Official Japan Rail Pass Website: Japan Rail Pass

Additional Information on Jr Pass for Indians

  1. Cancellation and refund: If you need to cancel your JR Pass, you can do so before the exchange voucher is exchanged for the actual pass. A cancellation fee will be deducted from the refund amount. Once the exchange voucher is exchanged for the pass, refund will not be processed.
  2. Documents Required: When purchasing the JR Pass, you must present the following documents:
    • Passport: A valid passport demonstrating your temporary visitor status in Japan.
    • Temporary Visitor Stamp: You must have a stamp in your passport indicating your entry into Japan as a temporary visitor.
  3. Exchange Voucher: You will receive an exchange voucher after purchasing the JR Pass. This voucher needs to be exchanged for the actual JR Pass in Japan. There are exchange offices at major JR stations and airports.
  4. Validity Period: The JR Pass is available for 7, 14, or 21 consecutive days. The validity period begins on the exchange date in Japan and ends at midnight on the last day.
  5. Seat Reservations: The JR Pass allows you to travel on most trains without having to pay additional fees. Nevertheless, it is best to make seat reservations during peak travel seasons. Reservations for seats can be made at JR ticket offices or reservation counters.

Important to Note:

  • The JR Pass is only available to foreign tourists and cannot be used by citizens of Japan.
  • Certain special trains like Twilight Express and the Hokkaido Shinkansen doesn’t come under the JR Pass.
  • The JR Pass does not include access to local transportation networks or transportation within individual cities.

Key Takeaway

The major catch is to understand whether or not you need a Japan Rail Pass. If you are only going to visit one of the cities in Japan, we would recommend not avail this pass.

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Is Japan Rail Pass for unlimited use?

The JR Pass can be used for unlimited access to Japan rail national trains, airport transfers and bus services. It can also be used for ferry and boat services.

When should I buy the Japan Rail Pass?

It is advised to buy the Japan rail pass atleast 2 to 3 weeks prior to your Japan trip.

Can I go to Kyoto with JR Pass?

If you are going to Kyoto from Tokyo with the JR pass, yes, it is very easy to get to Kyoto. You can catch a Shinkansen bullet train from Tokyo to Kyoto railway station.

Should I buy JR Pass in advance?

Yes, to make your Japan travel smooth, it is better to buy or place a order for the JR Pass altleast 2 weeks prior to your departure day.

Can I use my JR Pass from Tokyo to Osaka?

Yes this route is covered under the JR pass, making it easy for you to get to Osaka from Tokyo.

Mountains whisper secrets to cherry blossoms, as ancient temples guard dreams of the rising sun in Japan’s embrace.

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