Shinkansen Ticket Online Booking : Reserve Without the Hassle 

Wheelchair Accessibility on Shinkansen

January 20, 2020

Wheelchair Accessibility on Shinkansen

Are you worried about wheelchair accessibility on Shinkansen?

If so, please read this blog and make a plan for your trip.


Are there seats for a wheelchair on Shinkansen, and Can you get any supports at stations?

Yes. There are one or two seats for a wheelchair on every Shinkansen. And JR station staffs support to get on/off Shinkansen if you need (you should ask them in advance).

You can book:

- a seat for a wheelchair
- a place in the very last row of cabins

for your trip.
It depends on your wheelchair types and size. 
So please check the wheelchair conditions you can bring on Shinkansen.

If your wheelchair is foldable with dimensions totaling no more than 250 cm (height + width + length limited to 2 meters), you can choose a reserved seat at the last row seat and place your wheelchair behind the seat. 

Or if your wheelchair is NOT foldable and the size is within the regulation*, the seat for a wheelchair and place your wheelchair next to your seat would be good for you.

* The regulation of wheelchair you can bring on Shinkansen
- You can bring wheelchairs that are no longer or taller than 120 cm and no wider than 70 cm.

Additionally, if your wheelchair is a handle-type electric wheelchair (and the size within the regulation), you may be able to book a multi-purpose room. It depends on companies such as JR Central, JR East, JR West, JR Kyushu, or JR Hokkaido. So you need to check the company's condition for more details.


Where can you get information for Shinkansen Accessibility?

You can search for more details of accessibility on each Shinkansen at the following pages:

JR Central Official page for mobility scooter users (English)
JR East Official page for Accessibility (English)
JR West Official page for Accessibility (English)
* JR Hokkaido and JR Kyushu don't have this kind of pages in English.


Booking your seats for a wheelchair

Once you decide to take Shinkansen for your trip, where and how can you reserve your seats?

You can book your seat by: 

 - visiting a JR Ticket Office (Midori no Madoguchi in Japanese) directly
 - calling one of Japan Railway companies (there are JR Central, JR East, JR West, JR Kyushu, and JR Hokkaido), which is operating the Shinkansen you want to ride. 

And you will be asked the following things at JR Ticket Office or on phone call:

- Your Travel Date
- Your Travel Route (Departure/Arrival station)
- Your Desired Train Name and Number (if you have)
- # of Tickets (Adult?/Child?/any Attendants?)
- Type of your wheelchair (size*? foldable? manual? electrical?)
- Need Supports at departure/arrival stations?
- How to receive the tickets you booked?
- Your Contact information
- Transit information, etc.

Though most of the wheelchair tourists from abroad visit JR Ticket Offices directly and book their seats for a wheelchair after they arrive in Japan, do you think it is convenient and feel better for you if you can reserve your seats before you leave home by phone?

Of course, yes!

But, as you can see in the following contact list, only JR East has a contact for English speakers (others have only contacts for Japanese speakers). So if you are planning to visit the eastern part of Japan (such as Sendai, Akita, Yamagata, Iwate, or Fukushima), you can call them and book your seat.

Here is a contact list.

- JR East: JR East Info Line (English)
- JR Central: JR Central Contact List (Japanese)
- JR West: JR West Contact (Japanese)
- JR Kyushu: JR Kyushu Contact (Japanese)
- JR Hokkaido: JR Hokkaido Contact (Japanese)


What should you do when you want to book your seat on Tokaido Shinkansen (JR Central), Sanyo Shinkansen (JR West), Kyushu Shinkansen (JR Kyushu) or Hokkaido Shinkansen (JR Hokkaido) in advance before you leave your home in English?

Just contact us!!

If you feel stressed with all the processes you should do to reserve your seats, you should contact us!

We are happy to arrange your seats based on your request and ship them to your desired place in Japan or abroad. 

Please contact us ( once you decide to visit Japan in your wheelchair!


Seat guide

Shinkansen seats are available in four levels depending on the comfort and services your require.

Ordinary Seat

Regular seats used on Reserved cars and Unreserved cars of Shinkansen. Consider it as "economy class" seat.

Green Seat

Better seats with more space than ordinary seats. All Green Seats are reserved only. Consider it as "business class" seats.

Reserved Seat (Ordinary Reserved Seat)

Your seat is reserved and secured when you book your tickets. Head to the station with a peace of mind.
Seats are the same as Ordinary Seat.

Green Reserved Seat

Better seats and free blankets. Popular among Japanese business persons, executives and people who values comfortable travel. Consider it as "business class" seats.

GranClass Seat

Know as "First Class" of Shinkansen seats. Only available on Hokuriku and Tohoku Shinkansen lines. Gran Class seats comes with airline-like amenities and meals.The most expensive of all.

Unreserved Seat

You can take any open seats in unreserved cars of any train on the departure date. (No departure time will be indicated on your tickets.)
The best seat type if your priority is the cost and are traveling during less-crowded season/time.



For further information and photos, please visit official page at