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Resort Minori (JR East Joyful Train)


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Hi All,


I had a 3-week trip planned to Japan this past May, which obviously got cancelled because of coronavirus. I'd initially planned to travel on the Resort Minori train one day, but have seen that this service was recently cancelled. Does anyone know if JR East are likely to replace this service in the near future (between Sendai and Shinjō)? I realise it will still be possible to travel the same lines using regular services (whenever Japan finally reopens to tourists), but was looking forward to trying out some of the "Joyful" trains on my trip!





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My understanding is that there's a Temporary Replacement, the "Rapid Yukemuri" (快速湯けむり)

Kiha 111-221/112-221 with modified polka-dot livery and interior route posters.

One report I read indicated that there may be a future hybrid replacement called "Hybari" (ひばり) based on speculation from JR trademark registrations.

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Yes, I did manage to find an article about the temporary "Rapid Yukemuri" service, which makes me hopeful that they may re-launch the route with a permanent, newer/refurbished train set in the future. With any luck, maybe they'll have something in place by the time tourists are allowed back to Japan...


I just googled "Hybari" - interesting! Couldn't find any mention of it being a replacement for the Resort Minori, but interesting nonetheless:



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