Shinkasen 新幹線

The Shinkasen is the bullet train. You can take it to Kyoto or Tokyo. After about 4 days in Osaka I took it to Tokyo and got a bit lost/confused in the process. The Shinkasen is located at Shin-Osaka station. There you can follow signs towards where you can purchase a ticket, though you can also purchase a ticket at most JR stations. These are not cheap tickets. I was a bit confused as I purchased my ticket. The worker asked if I had a reservation, which I did not and so I ended up with this ticket. It was 13,620 ¥ which is about (~$136). This is the average price though for some reason I thought it was cheaper. I also thought it was faster. It takes about 2 and a half hours to get from Osaka to Tokyo via the Shinkasen.

But here’s the important part to know. By not asking for a reserved seat this meant I could sit anywhere I wanted in cars 1-3. No one explained this to me until I cornered a staff member on the train and someone else who over heard me ask where I could sit filled me in. The other thing I didn’t know was that if you plan to transfer at Tokyo station then you need to tell them your final destination when you buy the Shinkasen ticket or else you’re stuck inside the station without a way to transfer. My plan for the day was to go from Osaka to Disneyland. The Shinkasen took me from Shin-Osaka station to Tokyo station but no further because it ate the ticket as I left. I ended up going to the JR help booth and explaining where I was going and purchasing a ticket there since there were no JR ticket machines in the station, only fare adjustment machines…which require you to have a ticket…which I didn’t. Let’s just say it was a mess. If you have a fare pass of some sort you will be fine, but if you don’t and need an individual ticket purchase it with your Shinkasen so you don’t get trapped at Tokyo station and unable to make the transfer.

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