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Bit of old news from two weeks back, but it was revealed that the number of services on the Hokkaido Shinkansen will be set at 13 r/t a day. 10 round trips will be Tokyo - Shin Hakodate-Hokuto services, the remaining 3 r/t will be SHH-Sendai, SHH-Morioka, and SHH-Shin-Aomori. All Tokyo-SHH services and the SHH-Sendai service will be limited stop Hayabusa, while the SHH-Morioka and SHH-Shin-Aomori will be the frequent stop Hayate services. During holiday/special event periods, up to 4 additional r/t will be added to meet passenger demand. Currently, there are 10 r/t Hakucho/Super Hakucho ltd. express services between Hakodate and Aomori. Including the remaining night trains, approx. 4000 passengers are carried through the Seikan Tunnel daily. It is projected that number will increase to 6000/day with the introduction of shinkansen services. It is still unknown if the Tokyo-Shin Hakodate-Hokuto travel time will be under 4 hours, considered an important target, which would allow passengers from Tokyo departing before 8am to arrive in Hakodate around noontime. A more official announcement is scheduled for mid-September. *summarized from Hokkaido Shimbun print edition article 8/27/2015
Well my winter holiday begins this evening. I am taking the sleeper express Hamanasu most likely for the last time, as it's being axed this coming March (along with the Cassie) to make way for the shiney new Hokkaido Shinkansen. I have booked a lower berth (B shindai), and this too may be my last experience using this form of accomodation. In Aomori I will be taking a Hayabusa service on to Tokyo, with an arrival around 11am. I splurged a bit and got a seat in the green car.
Well this evening I made my final ticket purchases for my journey down to the Kanto area for the summer holiday. B shindai on the express Hamanasu Sapporo to Aomori, and then Gran Class on the Hayabusa Shin Aomori to Tokyo. Total cost 39210 yen including the distance fare, but hey, it's the holidays, I think I deserve it.