Japan Rail Pass Tickets

JR Pass for Whole Japan: Your guide to effortless exploration

Japan Rail PassJR Pass - Whole Japan Guide

Start a boundless adventure: explore Japan with the JR Pass for Whole Japan! This all-encompassing travel pass grants you access to a sprawling network of trains, buses, ferries, and monorails operated by Japan Railways (JR) Group and its affiliates. Save time and money on transportation as you embark on a seamless journey across the country, discovering everything from legendary landmarks like Tokyo, Osaka, and Kyoto to undiscovered gems waiting to be explored.

What's included?

A passenger on a JR train
  • Unlimited rides on JR Trains: Enjoy unlimited travel on most JR trains, including the high-speed Shinkansen bullet trains (excluding Nozomi and Mizuho services), limited express, express, special rapid, rapid, and local trains.
  • JR Bus: Make use of the extensive JR bus network operated by JR Hokkaido, JR Tohoku, and others, connecting you to various destinations across Japan. Please verify the validity on specific routes before relying on them.
  • JR Ferry: Embark on a scenic ferry journey to Miyajima, an enchanting island famed for the Itsukushima Shrine.
  • Tokyo Monorail: Enjoy seamless connectivity between Haneda Airport and central Tokyo. (Coverage of other airport rail lines may vary depending on the specific JR Pass purchased)
  • Selected non-JR trains: Access remote JR stations via select non-JR train lines (restricted routes; for details, refer to the official JR Pass list.

Why buy a JR Whole Japan Pass?

  • Unparalleled freedom: Travel across Japan's vast network of trains, buses, and ferries with a single pass, offering the ultimate convenience and flexibility for your itinerary. Explore hidden gems and make spontaneous detours with ease.
  • Cost-efficiency: Save significantly on transportation costs, especially if planning multiple long-distance journeys. 
  • Exclusive access: Enjoy unlimited rides on JR trains, including the world-renowned Shinkansen (bullet trains), except Nozomi and Mizuho services, opening up the whole country for exploration.
  • Ease of use: Simplify your travel experience with hassle-free seat reservations (recommended for peak seasons) and easy pass activation, avoiding the need to purchase individual tickets.
  • Global delivery: Receive your JR Pass at your doorstep anywhere in the world (with specific exclusions), ensuring you're ready to travel as soon as you land in Japan.
  • Digital guide included: Benefit from a comprehensive digital guide provided with your pass, enriching your travel experience with valuable insights and information.
  • Special offers: Access exclusive discounts and offers at various tourist attractions across Japan, enhancing your journey with unique experiences.
  • Peace of mind: Travel with peace of mind knowing your transportation is covered, allowing you to focus on enjoying your adventures.
  • Eligibility for foreign tourists: Specifically designed for foreign visitors, this pass embodies a warm welcome to Japan, making it an essential travel companion.

JR Pass for Whole Japan ticket options explained

Choose from two distinct ticket options for your Whole Japan JR Pass, each designed to cater to different preferences and budgets:

A woman looking out the window - JR pass

JR Pass: Whole Japan Access with Ordinary Seats

  • Highlights: Traverse every corner of Japan, taking your time with 7, 14, or 21-day access to local JR lines, bus routes, the Shinkansen, Miyajima Ferry, and the Tokyo Monorail, all while being guided digitally.
  • Inclusions: 7/14/21-day JR Pass, unlimited train rides on JR lines, global mail delivery, access to ordinary cars, and selected bus and ferry services.

You can get your pass delivered to your doorstep everywhere in the world except Malaysia, Singapore, and Brunei. If you’re from one of these countries, click here.

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Inside a green car or a first-class cabin of a Bullet train, Japan

JR Pass: Whole Japan Access with Green Class Seats

  • Highlights: Tour Japan in utmost comfort with Green Class seats, offering ample legroom and digital guidance. Opt between 7, 14, and 21-day passes for access to local rail lines, buses, and ferries.
  • Inclusions: Similar to the Ordinary Seats option, but with access to the luxurious Green Car for a more comfortable journey.

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Maximizing your JR Pass experience

women booking tickets online - JR pass

Seat reservations

  • While not mandatory for all trains, reservations are highly recommended for Shinkansen (bullet trains), limited express trains, and other busy routes, especially during peak seasons (Golden Week, Obon).
  • Reservations ensure you have a guaranteed seat, particularly helpful for traveling with groups or during peak travel times.
  • Reservations can be made for free at JR ticket offices or through dedicated machines at major stations using your JR Pass.
An exchange of tickets - JR pass


  • Upon arrival in Japan, exchange your JR Pass voucher for the physical JR Pass at a designated JR ticket office in major airports or train stations.
  • You can choose your activation date during this exchange, allowing flexibility in planning your itinerary.
  • Important: Activate your JR Pass within 30 days of your chosen activation date to begin your rail adventures.
A woman opening an envelope on a desk at home - JR pass


  • For maximum convenience, the JR Pass offers global mail delivery (except for Malaysia, Singapore, and Brunei For these countries, click here) ensuring you receive your pass well before your trip begins.
  • This eliminates the need to worry about collecting it upon arrival. Once you're in Japan, you can exchange your voucher for the physical JR Pass at a designated JR ticket office and then activate it to begin using it for travel.

Planning your trip

JR Pass: Whole Japan Access with Green Class Seats

Route maps

  • Utilize the official JR Rail network maps, including the Nationwide JR Route Map and dedicated Shinkansen Route Maps, to efficiently plan your travels.
  • These maps provide a comprehensive overview of the extensive JR network, including train lines, stations, and travel times.
  • By studying these maps in advance, you can plot your itinerary strategically and optimize your travel time between destinations.
  • Consider downloading mobile apps with interactive JR route maps for easy access on the go.
A Japanese station master on the Bullet train station platform - JR Pass

Nozomi & Mizuho Trains

  • The JR Pass covers most JR trains, including the high-speed Shinkansen bullet trains (excluding Nozomi and Mizuho services).
  • These excluded Shinkansen services, Nozomi and Mizuho, are the fastest Shinkansen trains, offering the quickest travel times between major cities.
  • If you prioritize speed over cost savings, you can choose to upgrade your tickets to Nozomi or Mizuho Shinkansen at train stations for an additional fee.
Woman at a train station in Japan

Additional perks and eligibility

Exclusive Discounts: 

  • Enhance your Japan experience by taking advantage of exclusive discounts offered at various tourist attractions across the country with your JR Pass.
  • Discounts may vary depending on the specific attraction, but they can include entry fee reductions, special offers on merchandise, or priority access.
  • Tip: Research participating attractions and discounts beforehand to maximize the savings potential of your JR Pass.


  • Exclusively available for foreign tourists with a "Temporary Visitor" visa stamp in their non-Japanese passport. Children under 6 travel for free.
2 women looking at a map while inside a train

Important Notes

  • Booking: Order your JR Pass online at least 2 weeks prior to departure to ensure timely receipt of the exchange voucher.
  • Exchange: Swap your voucher for the physical JR Pass at designated exchange offices within Japan, up to 90 days post-purchase.
  • Luggage & Pets: Standard luggage size restrictions apply, and transporting small pets in carriers is permitted on some trains for an additional fee.

Frequently Asked Questions about the JR Pass for Whole Japan

Can the JR Pass be used on all trains across Japan?

Yes, it covers most JR trains nationwide, including Shinkansen (except Nozomi and Mizuho), but not non-JR trains or some express bus routes.

How do I activate the JR Pass for Whole Japan upon arrival?

Exchange your voucher at a JR ticket office in major airports or stations. You can select the activation date at this time.

Are reservations required for JR trains?

Reservations are not mandatory but recommended for Shinkansen and limited express trains, especially during peak travel times. They can be made for free at any JR ticket office.

Can I travel to Okinawa with the JR Pass?

No, Okinawa requires air or ferry transport from mainland Japan and cannot be accessed with this pass.

Is the Tokyo Monorail to Haneda Airport covered?

Yes, the JR Pass for Whole Japan includes the Tokyo Monorail, providing direct access to Haneda Airport from central Tokyo.

What should I do if I lose my JR Pass?

Lost JR Passes cannot be reissued. Keep your pass secure at all times and consider keeping a photocopy of your voucher and pass for reference.

Can I use the JR Pass to get a discount on the Nozomi Shinkansen?

No, it does not offer discounts for Nozomi or Mizuho Shinkansen trains. You must purchase separate tickets or use alternative routes included with the pass.

How far in advance can I purchase the JR Pass?

You can purchase the exchange order up to 6 months before your trip to Japan. Remember to exchange it for the actual pass within 90 days of entering Japan.