How will I get from my lodging to school? How long is the commute?

Setting up your transport

If your lodging is arranged by KCP (dorm or homestay), on your arrival day at the airport you’ll receive a pass for transport between your lodging and school. KCP staff will tell you how to travel to KCP from your lodging. You can use the pass or coupons the very next day to go to KCP. If you receive coupons at the airport, KCP staff will give you a train allowance before you use up the coupons. If you wish to take a different route to school, you are responsible for the difference in the transportation fare.

You can use a train pass as often as you like during its valid time period, as long as you travel the specific route printed on the pass.  You can also get off and on at any station on that route.

To greatly ease the logistics of paying for your daily transportation, consider getting a rechargeable PASMO or Suica card.

Each month, your student coordinator will give you the money to extend your commute resources for another month. Many students obtain rechargeable PASMO or Suica smart cards, which they can use for train travel, bus travel, and even shopping. Then at the train station they transfer the monthly KCP train pass to their smart card. It’s not hard to do, and KCP staff can explain the process to you.

  • Make sure you bring the KCP pass with you when you go to extend.
  • Long term students with a student visa can apply for a student discount for their commute. You can fill out an application form and receive the document at the KCP office.

If you lose your pass or your PASMO/Suica card, you are responsible for replacing it. If you change your housing, you are responsible for your own local transportation.

NOTE: Students not enrolled in housing through KCP (course-only program) are responsible for their own transportation.

The Commute

Be ready for a longer commute than you may be used to. The average commute for a businessperson in Tokyo is 1½ hours each way. KCP tries to find suitable host families and dormitory complexes within a 1-hour commute from the school.

Try to stay positive, as the commute is a great opportunity to practice memorizing your vocabulary and kanji, to people watch, or explore other locations on your commute path without any additional transportation cost.

See What is commuting like in Tokyo?