Notices

Japan-trains

Reply

Jun 10th, 2012, 07:11 PM
  #1
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 97
Japan-trains

In a couple of months we are arriving NRT at 4:00 pm with our rail passes and hope to catch a fast train ,short of Nozomi, to Kyoto that evening. If there is a train ,I haven't figured out Hyperdia yet, is there a way to make reservations from U.S.? After a couple of days we are heading to Shikoku, is it complicated, ie. a lot of connections, to take a JR Kyoto- Takamtsu and then all the way back to Tokyo a couple days later?
jd51 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jun 11th, 2012, 04:33 AM
  #2
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,880
You probably need to spend a little more time with Hyperdia. It's an essential tool for people traveling on their own n Japan, and it's not especially challenging to use.

You will not have your rail passes when you arrive at NRT. You will have a voucher that you must exchange for a rail pass. When you arrive at NRT, follow the JR downstairs, and go to the JR office. There, you can exchange your voucher for the JR pass, activate the pass, and get reservations for trains to Kyoto.

To get to Kyoto from NRT, you must take the Narita Express train to Tokyo or to Shinagawa, then change for the SHinkansen train to Kyoto. It is much easier to change at Shinagawa than at Tokyo.

If you arrive at 4:00, it will probably take you about 90 minutes to clear immigration, get your bags, find your way to the JR office, and take care of business there. In that event, you'll take a 5:44pm NEx train, and you'll wind up in Kyoto at 9:58pm. Have another few tries at Hyperdia, and you'll see your other options.
DonTopaz is online now  
Reply With Quote
Jun 13th, 2012, 08:28 PM
  #3
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 14,727
To use hyperdia for the NRT to Tokyo trip:

in the From: box, type Narita and then select one of the international terminal options on the dropdown that appears

enter Kyoto as To: and then select KYOTO from that dropdown

choose the time (more about this below)

click on SearchDetails and see more options below

Uncheck all of the following:
Airplane
NOZOMI ... (assuming you are using a JR Pass)
Ordinary Train
Private Railway

click Search and you will see your options.

For departure time, I started with 5:30PM and all the options were 5:30PM. I advance the time to 5:45 and then again each 15 minutes after that until 6:45. Each search up until the last one showed one departure (the first one listed) that arrives the same night Kyoto. For the 6:45 departure time all it showed was the 9PM+ departures that arrive the next morning (meaning overnight in Tokyo), so I backed up the time.

Looks like 6:42 PM departure is you last chance of the day for arriving in Kyoto that night.

Which airline are you using to get to Tokyo?
mrwunrfl is online now  
Reply With Quote
Jun 13th, 2012, 08:57 PM
  #4
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 14,727
When you get to the JR station and get your JR Pass that is the best time for you to get the reserved seats, because that is when you will know what your departure time will actually be.

For the other trip, the first thing you want to do is re-check the options for Ordinary Train. You could also check Private Railway, but you will be traveling on JR anyway.

After typing in Takamatsu, choose TAKAMATSU(KAGAWA). That is the Takamatsu you want, the one on Shikoku in Kagawa prefecture.

That trip is fairly simple. You will have to make a change in Okayama. For Kyoto to Okayama, you will be able to find Hikari trains that make that trip. Worst case is that you make a change at Shin Osaka.

For Okayama to Takamatsu you will take a train call JR Marine Liner, which is not an "ordinary train", so it must be some kind of limited express, which is good. The trip is under 3 hours, including twenty minutes to change trains in Okayama (plenty of time).

For both trips, you will get your reserved seats (Marine Liner does have reserved seats) at your original, departure station. You don't have to have reserved seats (except for the Narita Express, and like the departure from Narita, I would get the seat reservations to Takamatsu at Kyoto station as I was about to depart. Actually, you could get those Takamatsu-bound reserved seats when you get the others and the pass at the Narita Airport JR station, but it is not necessary to do that.

For the return from Takamatsu, the route would be Takamatsu-Okayama, change trains, Shin Osaka, change trains, Tokyo or Shinagawa. If you wanted to do some searching then you might find a Hikari train that goes from Okayama all the way to Tokyo.
mrwunrfl is online now  
Reply With Quote
Jun 13th, 2012, 10:23 PM
  #5
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 97
Thanks so much for both of you. I'm going to tackle hyperdia with renewed vigor. We are traveling on American. Was that 6:42 out of Shinawgawa?
jd51 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jun 14th, 2012, 01:27 PM
  #6
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 14,727
No, 6:42 PM is the departure time that hyperdia gives from international terminal 1 (which you may or may not be using). It shows a 6-minute walk to the airport JR station to get a Narita Express train departing at 6:48PM. Then a connection at Shinagawa station to the shinkansen to Kyoto, arriving at 11:02PM.

You will need more that 6 minutes to make that walkk AND get the JR Pass and the reserved seats.

Change to the instructions: for From: choose NARITA AIRPORT TERMINAL 1, not the international terminals This will exclude the walk time from an international terminal.

So, it is a 6:48 PM Narita Express train departured from Narita Airport Terminal 1 station to Shinagawa x shinkansen to Kyoto.

Important: when you do your search you will look at the departure times, but you should also look at ARRIVAL times.

Go ahead and do a search, unchecking those boxes, use Narita Airport Terminal 1, and departure time of 6:48 PM.

The first result will be what I described, the 6:48PM N'Ex. The second result is a 20:44 departure, 8:44PM, but look at the arrival time: 8:01 AM! It includes a 7-hour overnight connection at Shin Yokohama.
mrwunrfl is online now  
Reply With Quote
Jun 14th, 2012, 02:04 PM
  #7
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 14,727
You are doing this in "a couple of months". Could you be more precise? I am asking primarily to find out if you will be traveling during Obon.

The reason I asked for your carrier was to consider flying to Osaka and then train or bus to Kyoto. Because you are flying on American (oneworld) you can get an inexpensive ($150 = 12,500 yen or maybe 10,000 yen) flight on Japan Airines from NRT to Osaka.

Are you flying on an award or a paid ticket?

Please lay out your itin:
Day 1 - arrive NRT and travel to Kyoto
Day 2 - Kyoto overnight
...
Day n - Kyoto to Takamatsu, night in Takamatsu
...
Day (last) - Depart NRT

You might find train options later than 6:48PM, using ordinary trains or private railways, but that time doesn't give you a whole lot of options if your flight to Tokyo is significantly delayed.

I checked JAL and the last flight from NRT to Osaka for a date in Sept is at 6:30 PM, to Itami.

There is a 9:10 PM flight from Tokyo Haneda to Osaka.
mrwunrfl is online now  
Reply With Quote
Jun 14th, 2012, 02:30 PM
  #8
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 14,727
One time, I flew to Tokyo on JAL on one award ticket and was to connect there for a flight to Sapporo on a second award ticket. The JFK-NRT flight was delayed by 4 hours or more because of a passenger illness on the same flight a day or two earlier and they had to return to JFK (I think this was the story). That messed up the JFK-NRT-JFK flights for a couple of days.

Anyway, I missed the last flight from NRT to Sapporo. JAL gave me vouchers for: a hotel night in Shinagawa, meals, bus from NRT to Shinagawa and from there to Haneda, where they had put me on a flight the next day from HND to Sapporo. And doing that didn't mess up the second leg of that second award trip, from Sapporo to Hiroshima.

That was all on JAL. If you are able to add NRT-KIX to your AA ticket, then I think you would be protected like that from a late AA arrival. Might be the same in the case of two tickets.

Oh, and your third option, besides adding to your existing ticket or paying cash for a second one would be to use AA miles for a one-way award (if available) for an Tokyo to Osaka flight. And you still might be protected.

Of course, an option is to stay overnight in Tokyo or at a Narita Airport hotel or Shinagawa or maybe Yokohama. Staying in one of those places would likely be less expensive for the same quality than staying in Tokyo. Good chance those options would also be less expensive than your first night in Kyoto.
mrwunrfl is online now  
Reply With Quote
Jun 14th, 2012, 02:40 PM
  #9
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 14,727
AND

You might consider booking your first night in Kyoto on one reservation (not pre-paid) and the remaining night(s) on a second reservation. Then, when you get to the airport for your flight to Tokyo if you find that you will definitely not be able to get the trains to Kyoto that night and have to spend the night in Tokyo metro, then you can cancel that first reservation, probably with no penalty.
mrwunrfl is online now  
Reply With Quote
Jun 14th, 2012, 02:50 PM
  #10
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 14,727
Ok, considering what I wrote, I think that the best backup plan for a too-late AA arrival would be to be prepared to spend a night in the Tokyo metro area and then train the next day. Or just make that the plan.
mrwunrfl is online now  
Reply With Quote
 



Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 11:59 AM.