One-day JR Pass for Kansai

Mar 8th, 2019, 04:39 PM
  #1  
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One-day JR Pass for Kansai

I read that if I buy a JR Kansai Area Pass inside Japan (e.g. for one day) then I am disqualified from buying another such pass during my stay in Japan. Separately, there is an ICOCA & Haruka discount ticket offer that allows ICOCA holders to purchase a discounted Haruka ticket. My question is: if I buy a 1-day JR Kansai Area Pass, will I also be able to buy a discounted Haruka ticket with my ICOCA card?
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Mar 9th, 2019, 09:00 PM
  #2  
tt7
 
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What is it you are trying to achieve? Sometimes it can be difficult to respond to posts when the original poster doesn't include a clear explanation of their plans or when it's not clear why they are asking their question.

Originally Posted by msmango View Post
I read that if I buy a JR Kansai Area Pass inside Japan (e.g. for one day) then I am disqualified from buying another such pass during my stay in Japan.
Correct -- at least according to this JR Kansai Area Pass explanation. If you buy it outside Japan, you receive a voucher that you exchange for the pass once you are in Japan. You can buy it in Japan for a slightly higher price but can only do that once during your stay (whereas there is no such restriction if you buy it outside Japan). I don't know why that is but, given that the Pass is only available to foreign visitors, it may be some kind of anti-fraud measure.

Originally Posted by msmango View Post
Separately, there is an ICOCA & Haruka discount ticket offer that allows ICOCA holders to purchase a discounted Haruka ticket. My question is: if I buy a 1-day JR Kansai Area Pass, will I also be able to buy a discounted Haruka ticket with my ICOCA card?
There is a discounted ICOCA + Haruka offer and, if you already have an ICOCA card, a discounted Haruka offer. I assume you already have an ICOCA card? If you do, you can buy a discounted Haruka ticket -- there does not appear to be any restriction on doing so if you buy a JR Kansai Area Pass. However, why would you want to do that? The JR Kansai Area Pass covers the Haruka Express (albeit an unreserved seat) so why would you buy both? As I said originally, a clear explanation of what you are trying to achieve (and why) would be helpful.

An unreserved seat ticket on the Haruka Limited Express from KIX to Kyoto is 2,850. A one-day JR Kansai Area Pass is 2,200 (2,300 in Japan). A discounted Haruka ticket if you have an ICOCA card is 1,600. The ICOCA + Haruka discount offer is 3,600 (1,600 + 2,000 ICOCA) .... so if you don't already have an ICOCA card, it's worth doing because even if you have no need for the ICOCA card and don't want to bother getting the 500 deposit back, you effectively get the Haruka ticket for 2,100 (and can obviously just spend the 1,500 on the ICOCA card), which is cheaper than just buying the ticket for 2,850.
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Mar 9th, 2019, 09:13 PM
  #3  
tt7
 
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Originally Posted by tt7 View Post
Correct -- at least according to this JR Kansai Area Pass explanation.
Conversely, this information on the JR West site doesn't appear to mention any single-purchase restriction if the JR Kansai Area Pass is purchased in Japan.
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Mar 10th, 2019, 08:36 AM
  #4  
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Thank you for your thoughtful answer.
I will be arriving in Osaka from Itami. Staying four nights there, then moving to Kyoto for four nights Departing home from Kyoto via Kansai International.
I will buy an ICOCA card upon arrival in Osaka.
My plan was to do a day trip to Himeji from Osaka, buying the 1 Day JR Kansai Area Pass (because it's cheaper than 2 one-way tickets).
Then, on the day of departure, I was going to buy a discounted Haruka ticket in Kyoto Station. I understand that I am only allowed to purchase this ticket on the day I plan to use it.
Hope this plan sounds correct.
Thanks again.
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Mar 10th, 2019, 03:44 PM
  #5  
tt7
 
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Originally Posted by msmango View Post
I will be arriving in Osaka from Itami......
Ah, now I understand ....

Originally Posted by msmango View Post
I will buy an ICOCA card upon arrival in Osaka. My plan was to do a day trip to Himeji from Osaka, buying the 1 Day JR Kansai Area Pass (because it's cheaper than 2 one-way tickets).
Indeed it is - good planning.

Originally Posted by msmango View Post
Then, on the day of departure, I was going to buy a discounted Haruka ticket in Kyoto Station. I understand that I am only allowed to purchase this ticket on the day I plan to use it.
The JR West website says the discounted Haruka roundtrip ticket (starting at KIX only) is valid for 14 days and the one-way ticket (either direction) is valid for 1 day. I would interpret that to mean that the inbound (second) part of the round-trip must be done within 14 days of the outbound (though that's not relevant to you). For the one way ticket, I would assume that means it's only valid on the one day .... as it's a single one way ticket. I wouldn't immediately interpret that to mean you can only buy it on the day you use it. Normally, you can buy tickets ahead of the day of travel ... and I'm not sure why the discounted Haruka ticket would be any different.

I can't speak to Osaka but in Kyoto, when you enter the station through the entrance on the north side, there's a ticket office to your left (at about 45 degrees) over in the corner. The back section of that office (straight ahead at the back when you walk in) is an English (and probably other) language section (if that helps...). I would go and ask them ahead of time if you can buy the discounted Haruka ticket ahead of time (and, if so, they'll sell it to you).

As the discounted Haruka ticket is for an unreserved seat, I'm not sure it would be specific to a particular train, rather than just being specific to a particular day. My (generic) understanding (which may be wrong) is that if you miss your train, you can use the ticket on any later train on the same day, though obviously if you had a reserved seat you've lost that and would have to sit in an unreserved seat. We've never done unreserved seats so I don't know if they are specific to a train or only to the designated day of travel - perhaps others can comment?

The closest we've come is doing it in reverse - we had reserved seats for the Haruka but, no matter how slowly we walked, the previous train refused to leave (though it was on time ... we were just early and couldn't walk any slower...). As there are unreserved carriages, we just got on the earlier train and sat in the unreserved seats. When the ticket inspector finally got round to us, he just clipped our tickets (for the later train) without a word...

On a different topic, it you're arriving at Itami, are you arriving from elsewhere in Japan? With 8 nights (4 in Osaka, 4 in Kyoto) are there specific things you want to do in Osaka? Some of us (well, me anyway) would suggest spending the 8 nights in Kyoto and, if needs be, doing Osaka as a day trip. Osaka Castle is interesting but then Himeji is much better. Dotonburi is the nightlife/restaurant part of Osaka and is worth visiting, particularly at night ... but you could do that on the way back from Himeji. For me, Osaka has always seemed like a mini-Tokyo (and largely a commercial city) without most of Tokyo's attractions. Kyoto, on the other hand, has a thousand years of history and is the cultural heart of Japan....
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Mar 10th, 2019, 10:13 PM
  #6  
 
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The only restriction that I saw was that you can't get two ICOCA+Haruka. I don't see a problem with getting both. Worst case is that you take the JR Rapid train from Osaka to Himeji and pay : 2,960 for the roundtrip instead of the 2000 for the KAP.
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Mar 11th, 2019, 08:05 AM
  #7  
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Thanks to you both for your helpful replies. We are actually arriving in Itami from an overseas flight via Narita. This is a bit of an impromptu trip for us, because we saw an excellent deal on the airfare and just had to take advantage! But it means we have relatively little time for planning before we arrive in Japan in mid-April. We chose to stay in Osaka for a couple of reasons. Firstly the hotel rates are a lot lower than in Kyoto, especially since we're coming in high season. Secondly, we figure that we will use Osaka as our base to do daytrips (Nara, Himeji) and to get acclimatized to Japanese culture/language,etc (and recover from jetlag) before moving onto the real gem of Kyoto! Plus I have never been to Japan and this way, Osaka will give me a taste of what Tokyo would be like
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