Suica vs PASMO

To travel around in Japan Suica and PASMO are very useful to pay the commuting fee.

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These two passes are provided by two different companies.

Suica = JR

PASMO = Other 11 trains like Tokyo metro and 19 bus businesses provide.

Yet, you can use Suica not only JR but other trains as well, like subway and busses, as well as you can use PASMO for JR trains.

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For both, you need to make a refundable 500 yen deposit first (JR Suica is only 280 yen refundable).

Both you can charge at the ticket machine at any train stations.

Both you can use many stores like convenience stores for your payment.

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So, there is no big difference to buy either one.

You can pick your preferred one.

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BUT,

There are some differences between the train passes.

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Mobile App

If you want the pass in your mobile, Suica is the one you should have because PASMO doesn’t provide mobile app services yet.

Refunding Fee

You charge some money on the train pass; you may want to charge enough so then you don’t need to go to the ticket machine to charge constantly. When you leave Japan, you may want to get the money on the pass back. PASMO is free to do that, while you have to pay 220 yen (about $2) for Suica, so the 220 yen is taken from the 500 yen deposit you paid when you got the Suica.

Name Recognition

Suica is a more famous whole in Japan. Since Suica is mainly used in East area, not in West or Hokkaido, so if you ask to use PASMO for the payment at convince stores, the employees there may not know PASMO but they probably know Suica. Yet, both passes you can use within Japan.

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If you need to commute/student train pass which is discounted, you need to get the one from the train company you use for your commute to and from. If you use both, then you can get the nearest station to your home.

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When you want to get your 500 yen deposit and money you charged on your Pasmo back from your Pasmo, you go to a station office at any station except JR with your Pasmo and ID, and write down your name, birthday, phone number, and gender.

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For Suica, you can get the deposit back at the ticket office (みどりの窓口)at JR station. Bring your ID and Suica with you and ask for a refund at the window.

 

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