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Saturday 29 July 2023

Japan on the wrong track for rail tourists

Tourists are set to pay a whole lot more to travel by train in Japan. 

Japan’s transport authority recently announced price increases of over 50% for nationwide train passes, Travel Mole reports.

Some of the Japan Railways (JR) group’s regional train passes will also see increases of up to 50%.

Prices for JR East and JR Central, which include Tokyo, Nagano and Tohoku, are subject to the biggest price hikes.,

The five-day JR East Tohoku Area Pass, with unlimited travel including shinkansen bullet trains, goes up from 20,000 yen to 30,000 yen from October. That's a new price of around $321. 

The three-day JR Tokyo Wide Pass rises from 10,180 yen to 15,000 yen.

Also, the five-day Takayama-Hokuriku Area Tourist Pass, which covers journeys between Nagoya and Takayama and Osaka with Kanazawa, goes up 39%.

JR Group said that as the price rises come into effect, more destinations will be covered by the passes. The rises still seem extortionate even though tt will boost the number of seats allocated for passes giving unlimited rail travel.

Rail passes in other regions such as the JR Kyushu and JR Hokkaido passes were also going up but by much less - 5% from 19,000 yen to 20,000 yen.

The JR nationwide 14-day pass, covering all trains across the country is priced at 80,000 yen, up from the current 47,250 yen.

The transport authority added that pass holders will receive certain perks, such as discounts at selected stores. Big whoopee do on that one. 

Prices for children aged between six and 11 are half that of the adult passes.

The old passes will remain on sale until September 30. So be quick, or be gouged. 

Image: Winsor Dobbin 

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