[JAPAN TIPS] Purchasing Japan Train Ticket – SUICA and PASMO Travel Card in Tokyo

I’m going to share one of the most-important tips when traveling around Tokyo; Purchasing a Japan Train TicketSUICA and PASMO Travel Card was really useful. The first thing we did when arriving in Tokyo is to buy a travel card named SUICA and Pasmo. The question is, which is the best choice between SUICA or Pasmo? Well, both of them are not many differences. They are both prepaid cards valid on JR and metro subway lines in/around Tokyo. So if you’re planning on traveling around Tokyo, don’t be afraid because I’m going to show you exactly the step-by-step guide from our video below (Pssst, you can also check my YouTube channel to see more Japan Trip videos) and be prepared for your vacation! Yihaaaaa! 😀  Oh, btw, why we didn’t buy the JR Pass? I’ll tell you the reason later, after this! 🙂

My SUICA and PASMO Travel Card - by Myfunfoodiary

SUICA and PASMO Travel Card made our trip a lot simpler when taking the train to many places in Tokyo. Once you have this IC card (Integrated Circuit Card), you can add value to it. This method prevents you from having to go through the hassle of buying a train ticket over and over again. How to use the Card? Simply touch your card to a sensor panel on the ticket gate and go through. The minimal cost of PASMO Card when you create a new card is ¥1000 (¥500 deposit for the card + ¥500 value that you can use right away). While for SUICA CARD, least cost is ¥2000 (¥500yen deposit for the card + ¥1500 value that you can use right away). You can add value to these cards at any Ticket Machines. To make a NEW CARD, for SUICA you have to use JR machines, while, for PASMO, you have to use the Ticket Machines at Metro Subway and TOEI stations. I like SUICA more than PASMO because it can print my name on this card. 😀

Suica vs Pasmo Card in Japan by Myfunfoodiary

Besides that, PASMO and SUICA Cards can be used to make purchases at shops, riding bus and from select vending machines. We can also enjoy special discounts when using SUICA or PASMO Card than buying a regular ticket everyday (See below picture to see the comparison, discounted ticket price using SUICA or PASMO Card vs Regular Train Tickets). Do not forget to return your Travel Card before you leave Japan and return to your home country to the Locket Counter at any train stations because they will refund the deposit ¥500 deposit from the card.
Discounted Train Ticket using SUICA vs PASMO by Myfunfoodiary
HOW TO BUY SUICA or PASMO Card from the Ticket Machines?

First, you must find the ticket kiosk! All ticket machines lined the walls, with a big map above it. Click the PLAY Button on below Video from my YouTube Channel to see a step-by-step guide on purchasing the SUICA Card in Tokyo, Japan. You can follow the same instructions from number 1 to 3 if you want to buy a NEW PASMO Card.

  1. Choose English language
  2. Click on Purchase NEW SUICA
  3. Choose My SUICA then CONFIRM
  4. Fill up your First Name, Last Name, Gender, Date of Birth, and Mobile Number
  5. Choose the Amount; from ¥1000, ¥2000, ¥3000, ¥4000, ¥5000, or ¥10.000
  6. Insert the money and voila! Your NEW SUICA Card is ready to use

 WHY DON’T WE USE THE JR PASS?

We didn’t use the JR Pass because we have made ​​a survey before leaving for Japan (when creating the itinerary) and calculate the costs that may occur between using JR PASS vs. SUICA or Pasmo card.

FYI, JR Pass is the Japan Rail Pass that can take you all over the Japan using bullet trains, local trains, and more. However, there are some occasions when you might need to buy a regular ticket depends on your destination. Looking at my schedule, I would spend 13 days in Japan, this means that if I choose to use the JR Pass, I have to buy a JR Pass card that’s valid for 14 days for ¥62.950 (adult-type GREEN) or ¥46.390 (adult-type ORDINARY).  I travel with my husband that means I have to prepare at least ¥46.390yen x 2pax = ¥92.780.

The conversion rate was 1¥ = 115.50, that means ¥92.780 equal to IDR 10.716.090 (for 2 persons) OH NO! It’s too expensive for us!!

Japan Rail Pass types and prices comparison

More information about JR Pass, click here: Japan Rail Pass types and prices

Order JR Pass Online, click here: Choose Your Japan Rail Pass

HOW MUCH THE TOTAL COST WE SPENT FOR 13 DAYS IN JAPAN?

Before giving details of our travel expenses for 13 days in Japan, I would tell you that we spent 3 days in Osaka, 2 days in Kyoto and 8 days in Tokyo. The following are the details of the transportation fee:

  • While in OSAKA we only spent: ¥3000 per person using 2-Days Osaka Amazing Pass
  • While in KYOTO we only spent: ¥1600 per person for 2-Days Bike Rental + ¥1320 Regular Ticket to Arashiyama = ¥2920 per person
  • While in TOKYO we only spent: ¥180 Regular Ticket to Kuramae Station (to reach our hotel) + ¥2000 per person for NEW SUICA or PASMO Card + 2 times reload for ¥2000 + ¥700 per person using TOIE One-Day Economy Pass + 2 times ¥500 per person using Special TOEI One-Day Economy Pass = ¥7880 per person
  • Willer Express Bus from Kyoto to Tokyo (day 4 to day 5), and Tokyo to Osaka (day 12 to day 13), total of ¥10.000 per person
  • Day 13 in Osaka before leaving Japan: Regular Ticket from Umeda to Namba ¥240 per person + Namba to Kansai Airport ¥920 per person = ¥1160 per person

Trains in Japan by Myfunfoodiary

OUR TRANSPORTATION COST FOR 13 DAYS IN JAPAN = ¥24.960 per person

2 persons travelled (me and my husband) means ¥24.960 x2 pax = ¥49.920 (for 2 persons).

The conversion rate was 1¥ = 115.50, that means ¥49.920 equal to IDR 5.765.760 (for two persons). It also means we SAVE A LOT of Money from the Transportation Cost.

IF we choose JR Pass for 14 days (not yet including the regular tickets): ¥92.780 equal to IDR 10.716.090 (for two persons)

We use Osaka Amazing Pass + Bicycle + Willer Express + Suica/Pasmo + TOEI One-Day Economy Pass: ¥49.920 equal to IDR 5.765.760 (for two persons)

TOTAL SAVINGS: ¥42.860 equal to IDR 4.950.330,– for 2 persons. Thank God, we’ve made the right decision, yeah!  

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Mullie inside the train in Japan - by Myfunfoodiary

Curious about Osaka 2-Days Amazing Pass? How to travel by bicycle around Kyoto? How to buy 3-Day Japan Bus Pass by Willer Express Bus? How to buy TOEI One-Day Economy Pass? Stay tuned for more upcoming Japan Tips from #myfunfoodiaryJapan and #happytravelistaJapan.

SUBSCRIBE NOW on Myfunfoodiary’s YouTube to see more upcoming videos!

Click Here —> Backpacking Itinerary 2 Weeks in Japan Guide for your reference

Japan TIPS <— Click Here

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Author: myfunfoodiary

Myfunfoodiary as Indonesian Food and Travel Blog was born in July 2012 and has become one of the valuable online source for locals, tourists, food enthusiasts and industry professionals. It is a Jakarta based Food and Travel Blog managed by Mullie Marlina, a young, lovely, cheerful and blessed wife who loves to share her culinary and travel experiences through her writing. You’ll find her honest reviews, valuable suggestions, objective ratings and recommendation of eateries in Jakarta and selected cities in Indonesia and abroad. Her curated restaurant reviews are based on her meticulous inquiries and her rich dining experience in various restaurants in Jakarta. She has also traveled to different cities and countries where she finds interesting and inspiring dishes, cuisines and excellent dining ambience which she also included in the list. From recommendations, restaurant experiences, events, travel destinations, and recipes, readers will find anything food related in this website. She would really appreciate your feedback, and would love to hear about any suggestions, events regarding food, or just to drop in to say "Hi". Again, thank you so much for dropping by, and she hopes you enjoy reading her journal. Thank you so much for all your supports! God bless you! ^_^

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14 Comments

  1. Thanks for posting the tips and step-by-step guide on youtube 🙂
    One thing I would like to ask though, do you need to have a Japanese phone number to purchase the Suica card?

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Ambrose, thank you for dropping by to our youtube ^.^
      You don’t have to have a Japanese phone number, just like what I did last time…
      I just entry my local number in my country haha.. 😀

      Post a Reply
    • Thank you Avanti for sharing it with us, this might be useful for my readers too 🙂

      Post a Reply
  2. Hi, I’m planning to go to Japan in early March
    Is there any differences between PASMO and Tokyo Metro Pass or is the same things

    Thanks 🙂

    Post a Reply
  3. Is there a luggage storage near Shinjuku Willer Bus terminal? Thanks.

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Anna, yes there is coin-operated lockers, available in different sizes but with a limited number of large lockers. For the large one, approx. 117cm x 43cm x 57cm
      (44in x 16in x 22in) you should check your luggage size then.. 🙂

      Post a Reply
  4. is suica suitable for every line? i didn’t need to buy other tickets right if i have the suica?

    Post a Reply
  5. Thank you for the great post! Is there a difference between Suica and Pasmo? Are there some subways/trains that you can ride only if you have the Suica? Thank you so much!

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Poodle, thank you for reading. 🙂
      SUICA can be used with all JR lines in Kanto region (the region of Tokyo), in all lines of the tokyo subway network, both Tokyo Metro and Toei metro, and also in other regions of Japan (only for JR LINES of Osaka, Hiroshima, Nagoya, Fukuoka, Sapporo). While PASMO can be used in all lines compatible with the SUICA card but only in the Kanto region. You can take a look of the complete SUICA PASMO Route MAP in this link http://www.jreast.co.jp/e/routemaps/pdf/RouteMap_majorrailsub.pdf

      Post a Reply

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