Sunday, March 28, 2010

Train - Tokyo NRT to Osaka Central Station - Easy?

I%26#39;m flying into Tokyo Narita on business and need to get to a hotel in central Osaka later that day.

I know the times, the costs etc, but I don%26#39;t know how EASY it will be for someone fresh off a 13hr flight, with no Japanese, never visited the country before and no idea - I am not stupid, but some of the charts looks extrodinary!

I don%26#39;t care much about the finances, but will I be able to find the right trains easily, buy tickets easily etc?

Will I need to reserve in advance? would rather buy a ticket on board!

Will be arriving on a Thursday at around 10am.

Thanks in advance.

Train - Tokyo NRT to Osaka Central Station - Easy?

All train stations have English signs so you can just follow along. Specifically, at Narita Airport, follow the signs to JR trains, all the way down to the platform level. Then from the JR Green Ticket Window, ask for Narita Express ticket (all reserved seats) to Tokyo or Shinagawa, and a Nozomi Shinkansen reserved seat ticket to Shinosaka. The staff at Narita Airport should be able to help you in English.

The 10:43am NEX goes to Tokyo and you can then trasnfer to Shinkansen to Shinosaka. The easier transfer is 11:15 NEX that goes to Shinagawa for the transfer to Shinosaka. Shinagawa is a smaller station so easier to get around. However, both transfers have enough time built-in that there is no need to rush.

You can go to and print out in advance the various train possibilities around 11:00am. You can then just show the ticket agent the trains you want. Ignore all the results that are not based on NEX since they require transfer between different rail companies.

All said, it%26#39;s really quite easy so there is nothing to worry about. There is really no need to reserve in advance. If you have the printout as I suggest, you can probably get your set of tickets in just a couple of minutes.

Train - Tokyo NRT to Osaka Central Station - Easy?

Really appreciate the answer, many thanks,

In Japan it is often quite impossible to purchase tickets onboard (except for minor rural lines) as all passengers are required to pass through ticket gates to get on board trains to begin with.

Also trains such as the Narita Express are all reserved seat trains so reservations are a must to start.

In any case if you are taking the Shinkansen, making a connection at SHINAGAWA Station from Narita Airport is much easier and faster then making a train connection at Tokyo Station:

As laid out:

Also note, the Shinkansen will arrive at ShinOsaka Station, depending on where exactly your hotel is, you might need to make additional local train connections at ShinOsaka Station.

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