WHAT DOES IT GIVE ACCESS TO?
It provides access to all train lines operated by Japan Railways (JR) throughout Japan (with the exception of some high-speed trains including the 'Nozomi' Shinkansen) for a period of 1, 2 or 3 weeks.
WHERE TO USE IT?
The Japanese railway network consists in more than 20 000 km of track. With this ticket you can reach the main attractions on the 4 main islands of the Japanese archipelago.
WHEN TO USE IT?
The Japan Rail Pass can be used 24/7, all year long, even if it is sometimes difficult to get a seat during the holiday periods:
From December 28th to January 6th: New year holiday during which most Japanese go back to their hometowns
From April 27th to May 6th: 'Golden week', time during which Japanese people travel in the country
Around August 15th: 'O-bon Festival', which brings families together.
The JR Pass allows unlimited use of JR trains, including bullet trains, for a certain period of time, and can save you money if you plan on taking multiple long-distance train journeys. If you are traveling to multiple cities in Japan and plan on using the bullet train (Shinkansen) or other long-distance trains (local, express or limited-express trains), then the JR Pass can be a cost-effective option.
In addition to the National Japan Rail Pass, other regional ones can be bought (JR Hokkaido Rail Pass, JR East Pass, JR Kansai area Pass, JR Sanyo area Pass and JR Kyushu Rail Pass) but are only valid for a specific region.