Frequently asked questions
The Japan Rail Pass is designed for travelers who go to Japan for tourist purposes and who wish to use on all JR train, buses and ferry services as a means of transport.
The Japan Rail Pass is available to any traveler who visits Japan with a Tourist Visa stamped in their passport. Without the Tourist Visa you will not be eligible, and therefore, you will not be able to exchange your order (JR voucher) for the actual Japan Rail Pass.
There are 2 types of Tourist Visa:
– For a stay of 15 days or less
– For a stay of 90 days or less
Any foreign citizen who applies for “stay for sight-seeing” will be granted a Tourist visa stamp or sticker
People who have Japanese nationality can acquire and use the Japan Rail Pass.
But you must count and fill in one of the following three documents:
- Copy of your Overseas Residential Registration issued by the embassy or legation of Japan in the foreign country where you live (limited to an Overseas Residential Registration with a date of acceptance at least 10 years earlier).
- Certificate of Overseas Residence issued by the embassy or legation of Japan in the foreign country where you live (limited to a Certificate of Overseas Residence with a date at least 10 years earlier as the date on which your address (or place of temporary residence) was established as your present address).
3. As a special case limited to the USA, Brazil, and Canada, the Permanent Resident Card issued by these 3 countries can be used as written proof until further notice (limited to a Permanent Resident Card confirming your stay in the relevant country for 10 years or more).
Yes, children who are 11 years of age at the time the Exchange Order is issued are eligible for the discounted child Japan Rail Pass.
The general rules of JR Group state that children from the ages of 6 through 11 are eligible for the discounted Japan Rail Pass. Those who are under 6 years old don’t require a Japan Rail Pass as they can travel for free. However, seat reservations are not available for children under the age of 6.
Yes, they have to enter Japan with their non-Japanese passport in order to obtain a “temporary visitor” visa. In addition, it is essential to obtain the “temporary visitor” visa.
If you are going to use a “Green” pass, you will need to make seat reservations, as Green carriages do not have unreserved seats.If you are going to use an “Ordinary” pass, you can choose to reserve seats on specific trains, or just take “unreserved” seats.
Within three months from the date the Exchange Order was issued, you must present your Exchange Order at a Japan Rail Pass exchange office to obtain your JAPAN RAIL PASS. At that time, you have to specify the date that you want to start using the Pass. It can be any date within one month from the date the PASS is received.
The validity period of a JAPAN RAIL PASS is the consecutive 7, 14, or 21 days beginning on the start date specified on the Pass. Once the Pass has a starting date written on it, the date cannot be changed.
Yes, you can, as long as they are eligible to use the Pass. They will need to receive the Rail Pass Exchange Order and take it with them when they travel to Japan.
The Rail Pass is valid on all train services operated by JR (Japan Rail Railways)* It is not valid on other privately-operated railways.
* There are a couple of exceptional cases where the Rail Pass cannot be used, even though the services are operated by JR:
– “Nozomi” bullet trains on the Tokyo-Kyoto-Osaka (Tokaido) line
– “Mizuho” bullet trains on the Kyushu Shinkasen line