Keep an eye on the clock unless you want to stay out all night.

In Tokyo, the party can keep going all night, with bars, pubs, and clubs that stay open until the morning light. However, if you’ve got something else you’d like to do before sunrise, like, say, go home and get some sleep, you’ll want to keep the time of your last train in mind while you’re out partying.

Sure, you could always grab a taxi, but cabs are already expensive in Japan, and they increase their rates for late-night rides (a 20-some-odd-minute taxi ride in nocturnal Tokyo can easily run you 5,000 yen [US$45]), so the train really is your, and your wallet’s, friend. Unfortunately, the most important train line in Tokyo is about to move the time of its last train up by roughly 30 minutes.

▼ And no, you’re not allowed to chill on the station platform for five hours until the first train of the next morning.

The JR Yamanote Line runs in a loop around downtown Tokyo, passing through nightlife hotspots like Shibuya and Shinjuku, plus Harajuku and Ikebukuro. But for passengers wanting to make their way from those stations to Shinagawa, one of Tokyo’s most convenient transfer hubs, at the southeast tip of downtown, the timetable for the last train is going to be changing due to large-scale construction taking place near Shinagawa, which is precluding the use of storage depot tracks for cars going out of service for the night.

For example, previously the last train from Shibuya to Shinagawa left Shibuya Station at 1:07 a.m., but under the new timetable, you’ll need to be on the 0:40 a.m. train, 27 minutes earlier, if you want to make it to Shinagawa. Other changes include:
● Last train from Ikebukuro to Shinagawa: 0:51 a.m.→0:24 a.m.
● Last train from Shinjuku to Shinagawa: 1 a.m.→0:33 a.m.
● Last train from Yoyogi to Shinagawa: 1:02 a.m.→0:34 a.m.
● Last train from Osaki to Shinagawa: 1:16 a.m.→0:49 a.m.

It’s worth noting that the previous last trains to Shinagawa aren’t being discontinued entirely (except for the 1:16 train from Osaki). However, under the new schedule, they’ll only go as far as Osaki Station, one station west of Shinagawa and a 22-minute walk away, which is probably too far to make it on foot if you need to catch another train from Shinagawa to get back to your home or hotel.

The new schedule goes into effect the night of March 16, so if you’re going out partying then you’ll want to have your last drink a little earlier, mentally prepare yourself to stay out until the trains start running again in the morning, or look for a comfy capsule hotel to spend the night in (preferably one with beautiful interior decorations or tons of free manga to read).

Source: Livedoor News/MAG2 News via Hachima Kiko
Top image: Pakutaso
Insert image: Pakutaso
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