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  1. There are going to be some changes to the Japan Rail Pass this year, starting in April, in time for the olympics New website for ordering Japan Rail Passes; No more exchange orders. Before you had to go to some website (sometimes shady inflated priced ones) and buy an exchange order with expensive shipping (so it won't get lost), keep the exchange order, and then fill out all the details when you get to Japan in the Exchange Office. No more. Now you just buy it on the new (unannounced) website, pick it up from the JR office when you arrive. New reservation system. People can now use ticket machines to make reservations and don't need to rely on a JR travel office. This goes in tandem with the new luggage reservation system required starting in May this year on the Tokaido - Sanyo shinkansen. Ability to use ticket gates. Now Japan Rail Pass users can use automatic ticket gates and don't need to show their pass when they enter the train station. This was already possible with the Japan Rail Pass Kyushu. Kinda curious if they are going to update anything else; one can only hope... *cough* ability to use Nozomi trains *cough*
  2. I hope you have time to take a look at my Tumblr blog I kept for my family and friends while in Japan last year. I had a 3 week Japan Rail Pass and had a fantastic time! http://gillysfg.tumblr.com/
  3. A friend of mine is going to Japan this fall and wants to ride a couple reserved legs on his Japan Rail Pass (he's considering "Going Green"). I had an ordinary pass and went in Jiyuseki on Tokaido/Sanyo Shinkansen when I was in Japan as an adult, so I don't remember much of doing the whole reservations thing at the ticket office. But my friend will need to for his green car reservations. My friend doesn't know much Japanese, but I see that JR East now has English-Speaking ticket offices at Narita. Do you know if the JR East ticket office can do reservations for other JR group trains for Japan Rail Pass holders? Or only JR East trains? Thanks!
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