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Obtaining a Rail Pass
A Japan Rail Pass, good for 7, 14, or 21 days of travel, cannot be purchased in Japan. Rather, it is sold only outside Japan by authorized travel agents [ http://www.japanrailpass.net/eng/en001.html ], who issue a voucher called an Exchange Order. Once in Japan, the applicant then exchanges the Exchange Order for the actual Rail Pass by filling out an application form and showing a passport at one of more than 40 designated JR stations (a list of stations is provided with the Exchange Order). The Exchange Order must be exchanged for the Rail Pass within 3 months from date of issuance. When exchanging the Exchange Order, the applicant stipulates the starting date of the Rail Pass, which can be any date up to one month from the day the actual Rail Pass is received.