Cheaper Way to Get to Tokyo
I found this information in the “Plaza” magazine that gets delivered to homes in Tsukuba for free. I thought this might help people make plans for Golden Week.
Kanto Tetsudo Bus and JR Bus Kanto (I am not sure if they intentionally made these names to confuse people) operate a joint bus route between Tsukuba and Tokyo. The tickets are usually 1150 yen, but from April 26, 2007 to March 31, 2008 you can buy 3 tickets to Tokyo for 1900 yen, which comes out to 633 yen per ticket. However, please note that these tickets can only be used for the trip to Tokyo and cannot be used on the way back from Tokyo to Tsukuba.
This tickets are on sale at the Tsukuba bus terminal, but they can also be purchased on board the bus. You cannot buy them at Tokyo Station.
The schedule is available here:
The first schedule is for the trip from Tsukuba to Tokyo (上り=nobori=going up).
University of Tsukuba (筑波大学=tsukuba daigaku)
University of Tsukuba Hall (大学会館=daigaku kaikan)
University of Tsukuba Hospital (筑波大学病院=tsukuba daigaku byoin)
Tsukuba Center (つくばセンター)
Takezono 2-chome (竹園二丁目=takezono nichome)
Sengen 1-chome (千現一丁目=sengen itchome)
Namiki 1-chome (並木一丁目=namiki itchome)
Namiki 2-chome (並木二丁目=namiki nichome)
Namiki Ohashi (並木大橋=namiki ohashi)
Shimo Hirooka (下広岡)
(The above stops are all in Tsukuba)
Ueno Station (上野駅=ueno eki)
Tokyo Station (東京駅=tokyo eki)
On holidays, the bus does not stop at Ueno, so the last column in the first schedule shows what time you can expect to arrive at Tsukuba Station on holidays.
The second schedule is for the trip from Tokyo to Tsukuba (下り=kudari=going down). The bus leaves from Tokyo Station, then goes to Shimo Hirooka (which is in Tsukuba), Namiki Ohashi, Namiki 2-chome, Namiki 1-chome, Sengen 1-chome, Takezono 2-chome, Tsukuba Center, University of Tsukuba Hospital, University of Tsukuba Hall, and the final stop, University of Tsukuba. (This bus never stops at Ueno Station.)
“Nobori” and “kudari” are used to describe the direction that trains are travelling relative to Tokyo. Trains that are heading towards Tokyo are 上り and trains that are heading away from Tokyo are 下り. There are some exceptions, and there are other ways of labelling train lines (e.g. 北行=kita yuki=northbound, 南行=minami yuki=southbound), but often trains that travel on routes that end up outside of Tokyo are labelled like this.