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E-voucher or 7 day JR pass for Kyoto?

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E-voucher or 7 day JR pass for Kyoto? 2013/2/2 03:54
I will be arriving at Narita airport in Tokyo and will immediately take a train to Kyoto where I will staying for 7 days. On the 8th I will be taking the train back to Tokyo and stay there 1 day and leave to the US the next.

My trip will be a sightseeing one (I want to visit some shrines/palaces/etc in Kyoto)

I can't decide whether I should get the E-voucher which is cheaper http://www.japanican.com/tours/tourdetail.aspx?aff=EXJ&destcd=18&deptc... or the 7 day JR pass which lets me ride on most trains/buses but is more expensive http://www.japanican.com/tours/tourdetail.aspx?aff=EXJ&destcd=18&deptc...

What do you guys suggest? If the historical places in Kyoto are relatively close to each other (like 20m walking distance) I won't really need a JR pass, but they aren't I will be better off with one.

by Johnson (guest)  

Re: E-voucher or 7 day JR pass for Kyoto? 2013/2/2 13:36
The only way a JR pass would pay off is if you returned to Tokyo on day 7.
by Sal1980 rate this post as useful

Re: E-voucher or 7 day JR pass for Kyoto? 2013/2/2 14:24
As the above poster said, JR Pass pays off ONLY IF you return to Tokyo on day 7. It makes sense only for inter-city long distance trips on Shinkansen trains. on top of it, since it is valid only on JR trains, it is almost useless within Kyoto itself for local travel.

If you plan it so that you return to Tokyo on day 7, it makes sense as you can use it on Narita Express train from Narita to Tokyo, then on Shinkansen to Kyoto on day 1, and on Shinkansen back to Kyoto on day 7.

by ... (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: E-voucher or 7 day JR pass for Kyoto? 2013/2/2 14:34
The disadvantage of the e-voucher is that you need to stop at JR Tokai office in either Tokyo or Shinagawa station, and they say the exchange can take something like 30 minutes, and that after exchanging it you will get a ticket for non-reserved seat, which means you are not guaranteed a seat, though if you queue up at the platform you will eventually get a seat even if it was a busy travel day. I guess those are the reasons for the price.

If you get a JR Pass (provided you return to Tokyo on day 7), at Narita airport upon arrival, you can exchange the JR Pass voucher into the pass, and ask for reservations on Narita Express and also on connecting Shinkasen to Kyoto in one go, so you don't lose time, which might (or might not) matter to you depending on your arrival time in Narita and how tired you might be.

The e-voucher seems to have a limit on validity date for the return ticket too, so please consider your itinerary carefully. If you simply want to spend more time in Kyoto, and definitely want to return to Tokyo on day 8, then simply buying individual tickets would be fine as well, though it comes out a bit more expensive.

by ... (guest) rate this post as useful

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