Tokyo-Osaka Hokuriku Arch Pass

Hokuriku_shinkansen

The Tokyo-Osaka Hokuriku Arch Pass is a new rail pass, introduced just after the Hokuriku Shinkansen was finished. This new line extends the Shinkansen all the way to Kanazawa from Tokyo. The pass therefore takes visitors on an arch route from Tokyo to Osaka via the northern coast. It includes tourist hotspots such as Kanazawa, Kaga Onsen, Kyoto, Kobe, and Nara on the way.

The pass is a for 7 consecutive days. Discounts to various restaurants and tourist attractions are also included.

What does it cost?

Purchased outside Japan: Adults 24,000 yen (about $200), Children 12,000 yen (about $100)

Purchased in Japan: Adults 25,000 yen (about $210), Children 12,500 yen (about $105)

When can I use it?

Anytime.

Is it worth it?

This pass is genius. Most first time visitors just take the Shinkansen from Tokyo straight to Osaka, along the south coast. They are therefore missing out on some great locations in central Japan. This pass is cheaper than the main Japan Rail Pass, and if you spend a few days before in Tokyo and a few days after in Kyoto then the Tokyo-Osaka Hokuriku Arch Pass is definitely worth considering. In terms of cost, the pass will also save lots of money over individual tickets.

What are the rules?

  • For use only in on the arch route between Tokyo and Osaka via Kanazawa.
  • Only available to people with Tourist Visas,
  • When riding a Shinkansen train with the pass, you need to reserve seats.  This can be done at the Shinkansen ticket office of any JR station with Shinkansen services.
  • Can only be used on JR lines. Includes use of Limited Express trains.
  • Only available for 7 consecutive days.

Where can I buy it?

You can purchase at a travel agent in your home country (Japan specific ones are best, such as JTB or HIS), which is cheaper. You can also purchase or at a major train station in Japan.

How do I use it?

Activating a Tokyo-Osaka Hokuriku Arch Pass differs according to who you buy it from, so check with the company you purchased from. You are usually given a slip which you then take to a major JR train station or a major airport like Narita or Kansai airport, then exchange for a pass (you will need to show your passport).

Once you have your ticket, just show it to the station staff at the ticket gates and they will let you in.  They will sometimes stamp the pass.

Maps

Links

Official PDF

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