Transportation is quite expensive and can eat away a considerable fraction of your budget when in Japan. While a JR pass is useful when you go like from Osaka to Tokyo, in Kyoto there are a few JR lines so an all-day bus pass will really serve you well. At 500 yen or 200 pesos, the all-day pass guarantees you a day full of sights as you can go anywhere within the zone serviced by the city buses. Without the pass, each ride costs 230 yen.
Where to buy?
You can buy it from the bus terminals in front of Kyoto Station. We bought ours from the hostel we stayed in. The 500-yen pass is valid only for one day.
How to use?
On your first ride, upon exiting the bus, you have to insert it in a slot beside the driver where the date of use will be printed on it. On your succeeding rides, you just show it to the driver before getting off the bus. City buses in Kyoto have their entrance from the rear and exit from the front part of the bus. Be polite and care to say “sumimasen or suimasen” which means “sorry or excuse me” when the bus is packed and you are making your way in or out.
Tourists or travelers often use the RAKU bus line as they are more convenient. They take the route of the most popular temples. Bus #100 and #101 starts from Kyoto Station while bus #102 from Ginkaku-ji Temple.
There is a downside though, during the peak season where the city is packed with tourists, it may take as long as 10-15 minutes to wait for the next bus. We were there at the onset of fall and it is not yet too crowded, so we did not encounter this problem. Going around the city had cost us 1,500 yen only or 600 pesos per person for three days. That’s really a treat! Kyoto is a very beautiful city. Consider adding it to your bucket list 🙂
P.S. Exchange rate during our visit is PHP 1 = JPY 0.39