View Full Version : Discount Shinkansen tix at discount tix shop
2003-01-06, 08:42 PM
Who can tell me about these discounted Shinkansen tickets available at those discount ticket shops in Shinjuku and Shibuya. Since I heard about the discount travel agency going bankrupt and the customers getting burned, I'd like to ask those who know if these train tix are authentic and how I might verify their authenticity. Assuming I buy them, I can go to the JR office and pay the extra charge for reserved seats - is this correct?
Thanks to those who can reply!
2003-01-06, 10:20 PM
I use them a lot for business trips, and sometimes pay for upgrades to Nozomi, Green car or reserved seats at JR offices with a cash balance, done it all over Japan.
Never had a problem.
I did not know that it was possible to buy these kind of discount tickets. Can you tell me more about these shops that you refer to? Names? Any "rules of thumb" about the level of discount that they offer? How much would that save me on a ticket (for instance) from Tokyo to Hiroshima?
2003-01-06, 11:23 PM
TH - thanks for the info, as usual.
J. - this shop I saw was in Shinjuku, not too far from the exit across the street from Takashimaya Times Square. Go out that exit, turn left, go down the staircase in front of Lumine, turn left at the corner, and it's just a little store front. Cash only. Funny you should ask about Tokyo-Hiroshima-that's where I want to go. Don't recall the exact figures, but the discount was around 2,500-3,000 yen; something like 18,000 down to 15,000.
2003-01-06, 11:40 PM
Each of the JR companies sells many different types of discount tickets, and you can find all the information you need (in Japanese) in their large size schedule books, at a travel agent, at the station "midori no madoguchi", and on their web sites (eg. www.jr-central.co.jp, www.jr-east.co.jp). Most of my Japanese friends don't know much about discount train tickets, so you're not alone.
Aside from the local day trip tickets (eg. visit Kamakura from Tokyo), the most popular seem to be on the Tokaido Shinkansen between Tokyo and Kyoto/Osaka/Kobe. Not all destinations are covered, however. Regular fair on a Hikari train between Tokyo and Osaka is 13,950 yen, but if you buy a "business kippu" booklet of 25 tickets, the price per ticket drops to 12,160 one-way, including a reserved seat. Most people don't travel enough to buy an entire booklet, so discount ticket shops buy them and resell them at a slight profit.
You can find these ticket shops in any large urban shopping area because they also buy and sell gift certificates, beer coupons, expressway toll cards -- pretty much anything with a cash value assigned to it. There are many small shops just across the large road (Sotobori Dori) from Tokyo station, Yaesu north exit, mainly on the tiny side streets. They are usually only large enough for a few people to go inside at any one time, and their windows are filled with pricing information. One place near the large golf shop even has a vending machine outside. If you are near a university, you can also find these tickets sold in the travel section of their Co-op store.
thanks for your reply. You really seem to know your way around that area. This much price reduction is certainly worth the trouble. I guessed, from your post yesterday, that Hiroshima would be your destination. I had once the opportunity to visit the museum about the A bomb (next to the war memorial). It was a very impressive experience, in many ways.
2003-01-06, 11:45 PM
p.s. Tokyo -- Hiroshima is 15,800 yen by discount ticket, 18,250 yen regular fare. May be worth paying the 2,500 yen or so upgrade to the Nozomi.