Reply To: JR Pass

  • Accessible Japan

    February 23, 2018 at 11:32 am


    In short: Yes it is worth it if you plan on traveling on the shinkansen.

    It essentially pays for itself if you go from Tokyo to Kyoto and back.  Also, you can use it on regular JR trains anywhere in Japan.

    However, as not all Green Cars are wheelchair accessible, it is not worth getting the more expensive Green Car JR Pass since you may end up in the standard area anyway.


    For travelers in wheelchairs, there are three options:

    Private room – this can accommodate one wheelchair user and two companions.  It is considered a reserved seat.  You must book the room in advance at a Midori no Madoguchi ticket counter, JR recommends 2 days in advance.

    Wheelchair space – in the reserved seating car there are a few seats removed to make a wheelchair space.  In reality, there is room for one power wheelchair.
    You can buy this seat (if it is available) at any time (reserve, or just before going). But if you wait too long, it may be in use when you want to go.

    “Deck” – the deck is the area of the train without seating where the doors, toilets etc are.  While there are decks on all of the train carriages, only one door is wide enough to allow for wheelchairs to get on/off so you will be in the area near the private room and reserved wheelchair space anyway – just sitting in the hallway by the door.  I think 2-3 wheelchairs could fit on the deck.

    So, even if the reserved seats are taken, you can still ride the shinkansen, but you will need to sit in the deck area.

    If you go on the deck, you may want to confirm with JR it is OK to have more than two wheelchairs there because the food trolley must get through etc, they may have rules.  You can email JR here:

    You can see some pictures here:

    Hope this helps!

Skip to content