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JR Pass questions

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I would be grateful if you could help me with some questions.  First, let me tell you about my rough itinerary:

Day 1 - arrive in KIX, travel to Tennoji where I will be staying.

Day 2 - sightseeing in Osaka

Day 3 - travel to Kyoto (to see sakura blossoms)

Day 4 - travel to Kyoto (shrines etc)

Day 5 - travel to Nara

Day 6 - travel to Himeji

Day 7 - take train from Tennoji to KIX in the evening


Question 1: Should I get the JR pass?  What about the ICOCA-HARUKA pass?   What is the relationship between the two and if they are different, what is the suggestion on which pass to use?   Is there any other pass that is convenient to use?

Question 2: Since the trains may be crowded, I would like to reserve a seat (because I have sciatica and standing for long periods of time is a problem for me).   Can I buy reserved seats, or Green Car seats for my JR Pass (or any other pass)?    Where do I go to get such a Pass or where to go to reserve the seats please?

Question 3: I understand the JR pass does not cover subway trains.  If I am correct, any suggestion on what pass to get for the subways for Kyoto and Osaka?

Question 4: Does the JR pass cover travel on the Shinkansen?   Are there any trains in Osaka, Kyoto and Nara that it does NOT cover?


Many thanks for your help!  And best wishes for health and happiness!


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Hello there,

ICOCA is a rechargeable IC smart card and is unrelated to the Japan Rail Pass: https://www.japanstation.com/japans-prepaid-transportation-cards-ic-cards/

Which is suitable depends on the trains you use. I believe you can get the necessary information at these links: About The Japan Rail Pass About ICOCA & HARUKA

The Japan Rail Pass covers all JR trains and most of the shinkansens but not the Nozomi or the Mizuho. These passes might be good choices for you: Kansai WIDE Area Pass Kansai Area Pass

I hope that helps!

Best wishes,

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