【Koji Inoue’s “Train Travel Tips”】Look left and right when looking for transfer trains on the timetable-Travel Observation

【Koji Inoue’s “Train Travel Tips”】Look left and right when looking for transfer trains on the timetable-Travel Observation

Tokaido Shinkansen departure sign at Tokyo Station. Of course, here is arranged according to the order of departure, but if you often overtake and shunt cars on the way, the order will change a lot.

When it comes to paper timetables, “JR Timetable” and “JTB Timetable” are two of the best, but both have the same basic format. In other words, the emergence of “a row” and “tandem station” for each line or system. Time slows down as you move to the right.

The format of the timetable is one train, one line.

Now. Let’s imagine a scenario where you start on an express train and change to an ordinary train at stations along the way. This is always the case when the destination is a station through which an express train passes.

For example, take the Tokaido Shinkansen from Tokyo Station, then take the Nozomi to the west, change to the Kodama at Nagoya Station, and go to Gifu Hashima Station. .

・While looking at the time zone of Tokyo Station, look for “Nozomi” who will get on the train first.
・Check the arrival time of “Nozomi” at Nagoya Station
・Look for “Kodama” departing from Nagoya Station later than the confirmed arrival time in the “Nagoya Station” line of the timetable.

As I wrote before, the format of the timetable is “the further to the right, the slower the time”. Therefore, you should check to the right of the Nozomi arrival time you decide to take first to get to Nagoya Station. Why.


An example of the timetable posted at Tokyo Station on the Tokaido Shinkansen. “One row per train” format, similar to a paper timetable


This is an example of the timetable posted at Tokyo Station on the Tohoku Shinkansen.Even if the company is different, the format of the timetable is basically the same

The order of pulling out is out of order

It is easy to understand if you take Kodama, but Kodama has also been surpassed by Nozomi and Hikari many times between Tokyo and Nagoya. If overtaken, the overtaking train will lead the overtaking train.


At Odawara Station, “Hope” caught up with “Kodama” who was evacuated. On the current schedule, Nozomi runs a maximum of 12 trains an hour, so in that case, Kodama would evacuate at every station…or even 2 trains at a time.

However, since the basic format of the timetable is “one train, one line”, no matter how many trains are overtaken en route, they will stay on the same line. As a result, while being overtaken one by one, the situation of “the crow comes first” appeared. Let’s look at a concrete example using a timeline up to early March 2023 (at the time of writing).

The Kodama 707 departs Tokyo Station at 7:57 and arrives at Nagoya Station at 10:37. During the 2 hours and 40 minutes, the “Nozomi” and “Hight” which departed from Tokyo Station took the lead successively. Therefore, if you look at the “Nagoya” line from the timetable, the train that arrives at Nagoya Station earlier than the “Kodama 707” train is on the right side.

Therefore, the results of listing trains (including special trains) departing from Tokyo Station after “Kodama 707” and arriving at Nagoya Station earlier than “Kodama 707” are as follows (arrival times at Nagoya Station are in parentheses). The last Nozomi No. 213 was added to the list as it is a direct train with Kodama No. 707.

・Hope 207 (9:39)
・Light 503 (10:01)
・Nozomi No.15 (9:45)
・Hope 129 (9:49)
・Hope 295 (9:54)
・Hope 209/131 (9:56)
・Hope 297 (10:04)
・Kodama 709 (11:06)
・Nozomi No.17 (10:09)
・Light 635 (10:14)
・Hope 211 (10:16)
・Hope 133/299 (10:22)
・Nozomi 301 (10:23)
・ Nozomi No.83 (10:31)
・ 303 Xi (10:33)
・Kodama 711 (11:37)
・Hope 213 (10:39)

These trains are listed in order of departure from Tokyo Station on the paper timetable, so they are in the right row of Kodama 707. But after that, the order changed due to overtaking and shunting, and it arrived at Nagoya Station earlier than “Kodama 707”. There is also a scene where a later “Hikari” is sandwiched between two “Nozomi”.


Using the free software “OuDiaSecondV2”, the above trainsets were converted into diagrams. The thick black line is Kodama 707, the red line is Nozomi, and the blue line is Hikari.Understand the relationship between overtaking and shunting at intermediate stations

Points to note when transferring between limited express trains and local trains

“Nozomi” that connects with “Kodama 707” at Nagoya Station is followed by “Nozomi 213” that arrives at Nagoya Station two minutes later. However, if you select the arrival time of “Nozomi No.213” at Nagoya Station on the page corresponding to the timetable, and look to the right from there, you will not see “Kodama No.707” to transfer. Because “Kodama 707” departs from Tokyo Station first, it is on the far left.

In other words, if you want to transfer from Nozomi to Kodama at one of the stations en route, you may miss the transfer train if you don’t look left and right on the line at the transfer station. Conversely, when transferring from “Kodama” to “Nozomi”, just check the time on the right side of the transfer station. This is because the echo did not catch up to the train ahead.

However, a well-connected tram is not always nearby, and depending on the situation, it may appear on the next page. For example, in the previous example, if “Kodama 709” arriving at Nagoya Station from 11:06 is changed to “Nozomi” below. None of the trains listed above operate after 11:06. Because it will come later.

The situation is similar when returning from the arrival station to determine the train. For example, if you want to arrive at Gifu Hashima at 11:00, Kodama 707 will arrive at 10:58, just right.

However, when you search for the outbound “Nozomi” that connects to “Kodama 707” at Nagoya Station, even if you look at the left column of “Kodama 707” in the line at Nagoya Station, the connecting train does not appear. As I listed earlier, the Nozomi 213 that was just connected is on the far right.

The Tokaido Shinkansen is a rather extreme example. However, if express trains are mixed with ordinary trains, it is also possible that a similar situation will occur, but to a lesser extent. “When looking for a connecting partner on a paper timetable, check both left and right extensively.”

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