As foreign visitors to Japan grow, Tokyo’s airports are seeing record numbers of passengers. Haneda and Narita airports lie 60 km apart from each other on either side of Tokyo and Tokyo Bay, but if you’re using Shinagawa Station, you can reach both via Keikyu railways.
Shinagawa Station is a burgeoning transportation nexus in central Tokyo that also has bullet trains to Nagoya, Kyoto, and Osaka. Shinagawa is also a stop on the JR Yamanote loop line that circles the heart of Tokyo.
The Keikyu Main Line runs from Sengakuji, one stop from Shinagawa, down to Uraga Station in Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture, southwest of Tokyo. The Keikyu Main Line is connected to Haneda Airport via the Keikyu Airport Line and Narita International Airport via the Asakusa and Keisei lines. Certain Keikyu trains have through services in both directions, meaning you don’t have to transfer.
The Keikyu Main Line can also be used to travel south to Kawasaki, Yokohama and Yokosuka-Chuo stations, among others. Going north, the line itself ends at Sengakuji, but trains continue onto the Asakusa Line to busy Tokyo stations including Shimbashi, Higashi-Ginza, Nihombashi, Asakusa and Oshiage, as well as Narita Airport via the Keisei lines.
Note that it’s quicker but more expensive to go from Shinagawa Station to Narita Airport via the Narita Express, which takes about one hour and costs 3,190 yen for ordinary car seats or 4,730 yen for Green Cars (first class). The seats are also more comfortable than the benches in the Keikyu cars.
Travelers should note that Japan Rail Passes are not accepted on the Keikyu lines because they’re not part of the Japan Rail network.
Finally, Keikyu Shinagawa Station is adjacent to but separate from JR Shinagawa Station, which hosts the Shinkansen bullet trains. There’s a large transfer area between them – if you have a Pasmo or Suica stored-value card, simply touch the card reader on the gate to transfer. If you have a paper ticket, see an attendant.
Located 14 km south of Tokyo Station along Tokyo Bay, Haneda Airport is Tokyo’s rapidly growing air hub and home to some of the world’s busiest air routes, such as flights to Sapporo and Fukuoka. After its International Terminal opened in 2010, passenger numbers rose quickly, with a record-high 75 million in 2015.
From Keikyu Shinagawa Station Platform 1, Keikyu Main Line limited express trains reach Haneda Airport’s International Terminal in about 13 minutes, with through service on the Keikyu Airport Line from Keikyu Kamata Station.
Keikyu trains stop at Haneda Airport International Terminal Station before ending at Haneda Airport Domestic Terminal Station, which serves terminals 1 and 2.
Train fare: 410 yen
Train time: 13 minutes
Located to the east of central Tokyo in Chiba Prefecture, Narita International Airport is one of Japan’s major gateways and the world’s 10th-busiest air hub. Narita saw a record-high 37 million passengers in 2015, the year it opened its new Terminal 3 for low-cost carriers.
From Platform 2 at Keikyu Shinagawa Station, get on a Keikyu Airport Kaitoku service bound for Narita airport. It has through service on the Asakusa and Keisei lines and no transfer is required.
Note that passengers bound for Terminal 3 should get off at the station named “Narita Airport Terminal 2･3”. From there, it’s a 15-minute walk or 5-minute free shuttle bus ride to Terminal 3. The last stop on the Keisei line is Narita Airport Terminal 1.
Train fare: 1,520 yen
Train time: 1 hour and 20 minutes
Article by Tim Hornyak. All rights reserved.