For some unexpected reasons, I had to go to Kyoto in July, then Osaka the next week. The easiest solution? A two to three hour ride in the Shinkansen (bullet train). How much is a ride? ~JPY13,000 one way to Kyoto. That’s the end of my plans to ride the Shinkansen. Time to bring the cheap accountant out.
What are my options? Shinkansen, normal train, bus and plane.
- Shinkansen is JPY13,000 one way, around 2-3 hours.
- Normal train takes around eight hours, the cheapest I found was JPY9,000.
- Bus ranges from JPY5,000 to 14,000 depending on the type of bus. The sleeper, high end bus is of course the most expensive. You can do the overnight one, to make the eight-nine hour travel less useless.
- Plane can be as low as JPY4,000 (Jetstar, Peach, Vanilla) to JPY20,000 (ANA), and less than an hour.
- However, one should include the travel time to/from the airport and the cost.
- Based on this, plane rides can only go as low as JPY6,000 and takes around four hours
- JPY4,000 plane
- JPY1,000 ticket to Narita
- JPY1,000 to Osaka from Kansai airport. It’s JPY3,500 from Kansai Airport to Kyoto, though there’s a JPY1,700 option with multiple transfers
It’s a no brainer – it has to be a bus if I’m going to Kyoto, but I have flexibility between flying and using the bus to Osaka.
I used Willer Bus, and lucked out. They had a sale! I paid JPY5000 for this bus, at probably around 50% discount. The meet up point is about a block away from Kyobashi Station of Ginza line – they do provide a google map accessible link in their email.
We left at 21:12ish, then arrived 5:48 the next day.
The entire seat inclines (yes, the entire seat). It’s a decent imitation of a lazy boy. I’ll give it a 7/10 in imitating the lazy boy.
Going back, I took a different bus (because this one is not on sale anymore), and that was a painful trip. The seat reclines a lot, yes, but it’s pretty narrow and, well, basically the pains we had to go through with a normal long bus rides. I don’t wanna go through it again. T.T
So for my Osaka trip, I just booked flights. Maybe next time I’ll still book flights for Kyoto trips, or hopefully, have my company pay for my Shinkansen tickets.