Tokyo to Osaka Japan: Timetable & Ticket Prices

Planning a journey from Tokyo to Osaka? Discover the ultimate travel guide with tips on the best transportation options, travel hacks, and hidden gems along the way!

Tokyo to Osaka Japan: Overview

The distance between Tokyo and Osaka is about 515 km (320 miles), and you have several choices:

  • Shinkansen (Bullet train): Shinkansen will get you to Osaka in about 2.5 to 3 hours. If you have the Japan Rail Pass, some bullet trains are free!
  • Flights: Flights are indeed a quick option, taking about 70 minutes. But add in those airport hustles, security checks, and waiting times.
  • Buses: Watching your yen? Buses are a cost-effective choice, though they’ll take around 8 hours.
  • Driving: Fancy the open road? Driving takes about 6 hours, but do factor in those tolls.
Shinkansen2.5 hours$95JP Pass or tickets
Flight1 hour 10 mins$45Check tickets
Bus8 hours$30Check tickets
Car6 hoursCheck car options
Travel options from Tokyo to Osaka.

I’ll explain each of these options in the sections below. Whatever you choose, I hope this helps you find the perfect way to get from Tokyo to Osaka.

Tokyo to Osaka by Shinkansen (Bullet Train)

Traveling by Shinkansen is the most comfortable option from Tokyo to Osaka.

Nozomi train line takes you to Shin-Osaka station from Tokyo station in just 2 hours and 30 minutes. Both stations are central, so your transit will be easy!

While it’s quite pricy, you’re paying for convenience and efficiency. Prices might vary based on your chosen travel class and how early you book, so book early!

I remember the bullet trains in Japan being really smooth — it didn’t feel like I was moving at all! The seats were plush and super comfy, and everything was really clean.

  • Ticket Prices: $95/ way
  • Travel time: 2 hours and 30 minutes
  • Frequency: 30+ trains daily
  • Stations: Tokyo Station -> Shin-Osaka Station

Timetable: Given the frequency, you’ve got flexibility.

JR06:0008:30Check tickets
JR07:0009:30Check tickets
JR08:0909:39Check tickets
JR09:0010:30Check tickets
JR10:3013:00Check tickets
Train schedule from Tokyo to Osaka. You can check more train schedules here


  • The Japan Rail Pass won’t cover the Nozomi. So, if you’ve got the pass, you might want to take other Shinkansen options like the Hikari or Kodama train.
  • For added comfort, consider reserving a seat in advance.
  • Check out off-peak hours for a potentially quieter journey.

Shinkansen with Japan Rail Pass

If you have a Japan Rail Pass, take either Hikari or Kodama trains on the Tokaido Shinkansen line. It takes about 3 to 4 hours to get from Tokyo to Osaka.

Hikari Shinkansen

  • Duration: 3 hours.
  • Frequency: 20 trains daily
  • Stations: Tokyo Station -> Shin-Osaka Station


  • Consider reserving your seats on the Hikari Shinkansen, especially during peak travel times and Japanese holidays.
  • Travel during off-peak hours to avoid the rush and ensure a comfortable journey.

Kodama Shinkansen

Just like its counterparts, the Kodama bullet train starts and ends its journey at Tokyo Station and Shin-Osaka Station.

The trip takes about 4 hours, and the ticket fee is included in Japan Rail Pass.

  • Duration: 4 hours.
  • Frequency: 20 trains daily.
  • Stations: Tokyo Station -> Shin-Osaka Station
Shinkansen info
Journey time2.5 – 4 hours
PriceFrom $95
Distance515 km (320 miles)
FrequencySeveral trains per day
First train6 am
Last train9:24 pm
Departure stationTokyo
Arrival stationShin-Osaka
ChangesDirect trains available
OperatorsJR Central
Train information from Tokyo to Osaka.

Tokyo to Osaka by Bus

For budget travelers, taking the bus between Tokyo and Osaka is the best choice.

Low cost is where the bus shines – affordability! You’re looking at prices ranging from $25 to $60.

With over 40 departures throughout the day and night, you’ve got options aplenty.

The bus takes longer than the Shinkansen, around 8 to 9 hours. However, buses in Japan are on time, clean, and comfortable, so the journey will be a breeze.

Some buses may have toilets onboard.

  • Ticket Prices: $25 to $60.
  • Duration: 8-9 hours.
  • Frequency: 40 departures daily
  • Stations: Tokyo Station -> Osaka Station
  • Timetable: You can find buses from early morning to late evening, plus some convenient overnight options.
Sakura Kotsu08:4018:30Check tickets
Kintestu21:1007:07Check tickets
Heisei21:5007:25Check tickets
Kintestu22:2006:48Check tickets
Bus schedule from Tokyo to Osaka. You can check more bus schedules here


  • Taking a night bus will save you a night’s accommodation cost.
  • Don’t forget to grab a neck pillow. It’s a game-changer for bus journeys.
  • Booking in advance may get you better rates and ensure seat availability.
Bus info
Journey time8 hours
Price$30 (€30)
Distance515 km (320 miles)
Frequency40+ buses per day
First bus8 am
Last bus11:55 pm
Departure stationTokyo
Arrival stationOsaka
OperatorsSakura Kotsu, Kintetsu, Heisei
Bus information from Tokyo to Osaka.

Tokyo to Osaka flight

If you’re in a hurry or just prefer the efficiency of air travel, catching a flight from Tokyo to Osaka is a practical option.

Flying between Tokyo and Osaka can be surprisingly affordable if you book in advance and watch out for deals. Prices generally range from $50 to $250.

Flights are speedy, getting you to Osaka in roughly 1 hour.

You can depart from either Tokyo’s Haneda (HND) or Narita (NRT) airports. In Osaka, flights land at Kansai International (KIX) or Itami Airport (ITM).

Tips: For hassle-free transit, book airport transfers between airports and your hotel!

Just a head up, airlines in Japan weigh your baggage very carefully. I had to take out my things before, even when the luggage was just 0.5kg overweight.

  • Ticket Prices: $50 to $250
  • Duration: 1 hour
  • Airports: Tokyo’s Haneda or Narita airports -> Kansai or Itami Airport in Osaka.
  • Timetable: With flights available throughout the day, you have flexibility.
ANA06:2507:30Check tickets
Peach07:1508:50Check tickets
Jetstar08:3010:05Check tickets
ANA09:0010:10Check tickets
Flight schedule from Tokyo to Osaka. You can check more flight schedules here.
Flight info
Journey time1 hour 10 mins
PriceFrom $45
Distance400 km (250 miles)
Frequency30+ flights per day
First flight6:25 am
Last flight9 pm
DepartureNarita, Haneda Airport
ArrivalKansai, Itami Airport
ChangesDirect flights available
OperatorsANA, Peach, Jetstar
Flight information from Tokyo to Osaka.

Tokyo to Osaka by Car

If you’ve got the time and the adventurous spirit, driving from Tokyo to Osaka might be your travel choice.

Car rentals in Japan can vary, but for a standard vehicle, you’re typically looking at anywhere from $50 to $100 per day.

Toll fees for expressways are extra and can add up, sometimes around $50 to $70 for the entire journey.

The drive usually takes about 6-8 hours, depending on your speed and the number of stops you make.

The most popular route is the Tomei and Meishin Expressways. It’s well-maintained and offers plenty of rest stops.

  • Prices: From $100/ day
  • Duration: 6-8 hours
  • Route: Tomei and Meishin Expressways

Destinations on the Way:

  • Hakone: Famous for its hot springs and the breathtaking Lake Ashi.
  • Nagoya: Japan’s fourth-largest city, rich with history and culture.
  • Kyoto: While it’s a slight detour, the cultural heart of Japan is worth the visit if you have the time.


  • GPS is a must! English-friendly systems are available.
  • Remember, in Japan, you drive on the left.
  • Parking in Osaka can be tricky and expensive, so plan ahead.
  • If you’re traveling during the holiday season, expressways can get congested.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *