Seishun 18 Ticket

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A used Seishun 18 ticket issued in 2006

The Seishun 18 Ticket (青春18きっぷ?, Seishun Jūhachi Kippu) is a special discount ticket issued in Japan which allows holders one-day unlimited rides on the local trains of Japan Railways Group during limited periods of year.

One ticket is valid for five (not necessarily continuous) days (midnight to midnight), within the designated period of the season (see table below for seasonal periods). It can also be used by several people simultaneously; for example, five passengers can use entire one sheet of ticket for their one-day trip as a group instead of one passenger traveling individually on five different days. Basically a single sheet of ticket can be stamped for up to 5 times, and a single stamp means unlimited travel for one person for that day. The price of the ticket is 11,850 yen per sheet of 5 tickets, this means 2,370 yen per ticket. This ticket is ideal for long distance travellers, wherein people can get more value for their money.

In the context of Japan Railways Group, the term "local trains" (普通列車?) means not only trains that stop at every station, but also all passenger trains except for Shinkansen, limited express and express trains that require express surcharges. This ticket is meant for travel on "local" (普通?, futsū) or "rapid" (快速?, kaisoku) train services.

There is no age limitation, despite the name "Seishun 18" (literally "Youth 18"). The ticket cannot be used in automatic ticket machines, even though the back of the ticket is magnetized. This ticket is not available at standard ticket vending machines, but during the on-sale period it can be purchased from the higher-end machines (that also sell Shinkansen tickets) under the heading "O-Toku na Kippu". it can also purchased over the counter at JR train stations or a travel agency during the on-sale period.

Sale and usage of ticket[edit]

Each year the ticket goes for sale on three different occasions, details are shown in the table below. Although every season the JR authorities quote that these dates are subject to change, however over a long history (since year 1982 when this ticket was first introduced) these dates have remained unchanged and can be considered as a standard data. Note that once a ticket is purchased, it can be used only for that particular season. JR can refund full money only for tickets that remain unused (not stamped) before the end of the "Tickets on sale" period. 

Period Validity Tickets on sale
Spring March 1 to April 10 February 20 to March 31
Summer July 20 to September 10 July 1 to August 31
Winter December 10 to January 10 December 1 to December 31

History[edit]

A used Seishun 18 ticket issued in 1987

The ticket first went on sale from March 1, 1982, as the Seishun 18 Nobinobi Kippu (青春18のびのびきっぷ?). It cost 8,000 yen and consisted of three 1-day tickets and one 2-day ticket. It also included a "Seishun 18" sticker for users to stick on their bags when travelling.[1]

From fiscal 1983, the name was modified to simply Seishun 18 Kippu (青春18きっぷ?). The price was raised to 10,000 yen for a booklet of four 1-day tickets and one 2-day ticket (equivalent to 1,666 yen per day, compared with 1,600 yen per day for the original ticket).[1]

From summer 1984, the format was changed to a booklet of five 1-day tickets, with the price remaining at 10,000 yen, equivalent to 2,000 yen per day.[1]

The price was raised to 11,000 yen from the winter of 1986 following the nationwide fare increase in July of that year.[1]

With the introduction of consumption tax in 1989, the price was raised to 11,300 yen from the summer ticket, and this was further increased to 11,500 yen from the summer 1997 ticket following the increase of consumption tax from 3% to 5%.[1] In 2014, the consumption tax was raised to 8%, leading to a new price of 11,850 yen.

The format of the ticket was changed from the original booklet style to single ticket from spring 1996 as a measure to prevent users from re-selling unused portions to ticket resellers.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f Kekke, Yoshiyuki (August 2012). "「青春18きっぷ」の30年を振り返る" [Looking Back Over 30 Years of the Seishun 18 Ticket]. Tetsudō Daiya Jōhō Magazine. Vol. 41 no. 340. Japan: Kōtsū Shimbun. pp. 66–70. 

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