Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka limited express train. how to get to airport by public transportation. Backpacking Kyoto Japan travel blog.

 

A number of budget airlines fly out of Kansai Airport KIX including AirAsia and Scoot.

This region can serve as a nice base with a good number of things to do…

Including many things to do with a few days in Kyoto! (See how to spend 1 day, 2 days, and 5 days in Kyoto.)

 

The other major city near this airport is Osaka, and you can take the Haruka train from Osaka to Kansai Airport too.

Osaka is slightly closer to the airport than Kyoto.

 

But if you’re looking to make Kyoto your last stop before you fly out of Japan (or maybe fly to another part of Japan like Haneda airport orΒ Okinawa airport?!), then…

 

 

Is it easy to get to Kansai Airport from Kyoto by train?!

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train from airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

Yes, it can be pretty easy!

There is the JR Haruka train that you can get on at Kyoto Station, and then get off at Kansai Airport.

So it can make for a pretty simple last leg of journey before flying out.

This is one of the most convenient ways to get to the airport by train from Kyoto.

The one part that might be confusing is in buying the train ticket (because you need 2 tickets, actually), but more on that below.

 

 

How frequent are the train timings?

The JR Haruka limited express train generally departs from Kyoto Station every half hour, so the train timings can be pretty convenient too.

 

 

Now…

Here’s a bit of what your train journey from Kyoto to KIX airport might be like!

 

 

Arrive at Kyoto Station

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train from Kyoto Station. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

 

Head on over to the ticket machines

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train from Kyoto Station - where to buy jr haruka tickets. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

You’ll be able to buy JR Haruka train tickets at the normal ticket machines.

 

 

Buy your train ticket!

You’ll basically just follow the prompts on the screen.

You can switch over to the English language option.

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train from Kyoto Station - how to buy jr haruka tickets. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train from Kyoto Station - buy limited express train tickets. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

If you are buying a ticket for more than one person, you can select how many adults and children you are buying tickets for.

The default is 1 person, so if you’re only buying a ticket for yourself, you don’t need to bother with this part.

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train from Kyoto Station - buy train tickets - train fare how much cost, adult, child. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

So at the main screen, you will look for the “limited express” option and continue to follow the prompts.

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train from Kyoto Station - buy limited express train tickets. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train from Kyoto Station - buy limited express train tickets. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

You’ll first click for a train bound for Kansai Airport, and then you’ll be asked which train station on this line you want to get off at.

So in both cases, you’ll choose the airport.

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train from Kyoto Station - buy limited express train tickets. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train from Kyoto Station - buy limited express train tickets. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

And then…

Here is where you need to buy 2 tickets!

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train from Kyoto Station - buy limited express train tickets. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

You want to choose the option to buy BOTH the limited express ticket AND the fare ticket.

And then you’ll be provided with the train ticket fare.

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train from Kyoto Station - buy limited express train tickets - cost how much. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

And then you’ll pay that amount below!

If you don’t have exact change, change will be provided.

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train from Kyoto Station - buy limited express train tickets. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

And out comes your tickets!

There will be 2 tickets that come out.

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train from Kyoto Station - buy limited express JR haruka train tickets. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

How much is a train ticket from Kyoto to Kansai Airport?

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train from Kyoto Station - buy limited express train tickets - cost how much for jr haruka. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

So the total cost of a train ticket from Kyoto Station to Kansai airport on the JR Haruka limited express train is 2,850 yen (US$25). (Or this is how much I paid in April 2019 anyway.)

 

 

Other notes…

You can only buy non-reserved seating tickets on the ticket machine

The JR Haruka has both reserved seats and non-reserved seats.

The tickets you buy at the ticket machine will provide you with non-reserved tickets.

If you’re not traveling during peak times, you will likely be okay with non-reserved seating.

The bonus is that Kyoto Station is where this train originates, so there’s an even better chance that you’re likely to end up with a seat.

 

But, if it makes you feel better to have reserved seating and you know the train time you want to take based on your flight time, you can get reserved tickets at the Kyoto Station JR office.

This is located right next to the ticket machines.

Sometimes, there is a long line at the JR office, so you may not want to wait until the last minute.

It is possible to buy reserved seating tickets days in advance.

If you buy non-reserved tickets at the ticket machine, that is for DAY OF travel. So don’t buy in advance!

 

 

Can you use a JR pass to take the Haruka train?

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - can you use jr pass to take haruka limited express train to airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

Yes, the JR pass is good for the Haruka airport train which means you can completely skip buying any tickets at all!

 

 

Okay, so you have your JR Haruka train ticket in hand (or your JR pass)…

Head over to the platform that the Haruka train departs from!

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - kyoto station ticket gate. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

If you have train tickets, you’ll insert the 2 tickets together that you just bought at the same time.

And then they will come out of the other end, and you need to grab them.

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - kyoto station ticket gate. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - kyoto station ticket gate. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

Once you’re through the gate (or you could do this before you go through the gate), you can confirm the train timings, and what platform you need to go to.

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - kyoto station haruka platform number. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - kyoto station haruka platform number. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

Although for figuring out which direction the JR Haruka platform is can be as simple as following the signs!

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - kyoto station how to get around. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - kyoto station how to get around. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - kyoto station coin lockers. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

And maybe you’ll want one last meal in Japan – a train station bento box?!

You’ll see this on your way to the train.

Food and drinks no problem on the train.

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - kyoto station train station bento box ekiben. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - kyoto station train station bento box ekiben. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

Or you’ll see a 7-eleven convenience store kiosk too right before you get on the train for some quick snacks and drinks.

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train from kyoto station - boarding time. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - kyoto station train station convenience store 7-eleven. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

So now you’ve arrived at the platform…

You can do a quick check to confirm this is the airport train!

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train from kyoto station to airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train at kyoto station. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

And then board the train according to which seating your ticket is!

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train at kyoto station. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

Green car…

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train green car from kyoto station to airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train green car seats from kyoto station to airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train green car seats from kyoto station to airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

Reserved seating…

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train reserved seating from kyoto station to airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train reserved seat reservations from kyoto station to airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train reserved seat reservations from kyoto station to airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train reserved car seats from kyoto station to airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train reserved car seats (and non-reserved) from kyoto station to airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Seats in reserved cars and non-reserved cars are the same.

 

Non-reserved seating…

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train non-reserved seating from kyoto station to airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train non-reserved seating from kyoto station to airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train non-reserved car seats from kyoto station to airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

 

Luggage storage in the JR Haruka train?

As an airport train, there are dedicated sections to store your suitcase or big backpack.

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train luggage storage for suitcase or big backpack. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train luggage storage for suitcase or big backpack. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train luggage storage for suitcase or big backpack. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train luggage storage for suitcase or big backpack. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

There’s also a luggage rack above your seat that you can use for smaller items too.

 

Toilet

There is a toilet on the train.

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - toilet on jr haruka train - restroom, bathroom. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

 

And then soon…

Off you go to Kansai Airport!

aka a man-made island!

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train at kyoto station. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train ride to airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train ride bridge to man-made island airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train ride bridge to man-made island airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

At some point, someone will come around to check tickets, so be sure to have them handy!

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train tickets stamp. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

 

Arrival at Kansai Airport KIX!

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - jr haruka train from airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

And once again…

Follow the signs!

First to leave the train area…

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - escalators and stairs at airport. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

There are stairs, escalators, and elevators.

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - are there elevators at airport train station. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - elevators at airport train station. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

Then you’ll come to exit the airport train station…

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - exit airport train station. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

And then either show your JR pass over to the side, or place your 2 tickets into the machine.

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - ticket gate at airport train station. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - ticket gate at airport train station. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

This time, no tickets will come out at the other end – you’re done!

 

And then next, follow the signs to catch your flight!

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - airport train station to terminals - domestic flights and international flights - t1, t2. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - airport train station to terminals - domestic flights and international flights - t1, t2. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - flight from kansai airport man-made island. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - flight from kansai airport man-made island. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

Kyoto to Kansai airport KIX train - flight from kansai airport man-made island. Backpacking Kyoto Japan

 

HAPPY TRAIN RIDE FROM KYOTO TO KANSAI AIRPORT!

 

 

 

 

 

 



More quick tips for planning your trip to Japan

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For more on planning your trip to Kyoto, see the 1-day, 2-day, and 5-day Kyoto itineraries. If you'll be in Kyoto in the spring, also see the 1-day cherry blossom photo walk.

Hotels in Kyoto
Search for deals on Kyoto hotels here.

For hostels across Japan, try this top backpacker's hostel chain.

Kyoto can also be a good place to stay at a Japanese-style ryokan, like this one. Or if you're on more of a budget, try this one.

Also use the map below to see more hotels in Kyoto!

Booking.com

Shoes for Japan
For summer travel, hiking sandals can be perfect for walking around cities and for many of the short day hikes! See travel sandals like these for women and these for men.

Japan is a mountain country so be sure to get in some hikes!

See trail running shoes too (for women - for men) for other solid hikes including climbing Mt Fuji.

Speaking of hiking, I love this daypack.

The super fast train in Japan
In general, 2 long-distance shinkansen train trips will likely end up making it so the JR pass will be worth it.

See the current price of a JR pass from an official vendor.

See an example of traveling by the fast train from Tokyo to Kyoto.

Natural disasters in Japan
Unfortunately, Japan can be prone to natural disasters which means risk for travel delays. So be sure to look at travel insurance for natural disasters.

My travel insurance took care of my accommodation and food costs when I was forced to stay extra days in Japan because of a typhoon.

See how much insurance costs for your trip.

Best travel guides for Japan
If you're at step 1 in your planning process, have a look at this Discover Japan book.

For "books" that won't take up space in your suitcase, see the best PDF guides.

See more of the best books for Japan trip planning.

Cheap(er) flights to Japan
I used this website to find the cheapest flight and to book my recent flight to Japan.

Sometimes it makes sense to book direct - my preferred way!

But this booking site will search a combination of airlines, including those who aren't partner airlines, which means that they can help you find cheaper flights by booking individual flights for you as part of one flight itinerary. This can be especially helpful if you're not flying out of a major hub with direct flights to Japan.

I've missed a flight booked through them and it was taken care of with hotel and new flight.

See more tips for finding cheap flights to Japan.

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That's it for now!