Translated by MATCHA-PR
Catch a Lift From KIX Into Kobe On The Convenient Bay Shuttle!
This article will introduce you to the Bay Shuttle, which connects Kobe Airport and Kansai International Airport (KIX) to the heart of Kobe; the Bay Shuttle is faster than taking the train.
Written by MATCHA-PR
The city of Kobe (神戸) in Hyogo (兵庫) prefecture, is practically overflowing with things to see and things to eat. Kobe’s most famous spots for tourists are concentrated around downtown such as Sannomiya (三宮) / Motomachi (元町) area, and the Bay Area. So if you use your time wisely, you can enjoy many of the sights and delicious food that Kobe has to offer. Even outside of the central hub of the city, there are famous sightseeing spots like Mt. Rokkō (Rokkōsan 六甲山) and Arima Onsen (有馬温泉). It is very possible to enjoy your trip to an even greater extent by taking your time over the course of several days.
The closest airport to this wonderful city is Kansai International Airport (KIX). Many people who visit Kansai region (encompassing Osaka, Kyoto, Hyogo, Shiga, Nara, and Wakayama) pass through this airport. Currently, most tourists take the train to Kobe from the airport, which takes approximately an hour and a half.
However, did you know that there is another way to get from KIX to Sannomiya, the central hub of Kobe, and that it takes just one hour? In addition to taking less time than the train, this way is cheaper and maybe more enjoyable to ride.
We would like to introduce you to the boat that connects Kansai International Airport and the city of Kobe, the “Kobe-KIX Bay Shuttle.”
Reference article: What to See, Eat and Do in the Fascinating City of Kobe
The Kobe-KIX Bay Shuttle
The Bay Shuttle (ベイ・シャトル) is a high-speed boat that traverses the 24 kilometers in Osaka Bay between Kobe and KIX in roughly half an hour. It makes the crossing 32 times (16 roundtrips) a day. Furthermore, both KIX and Kobe Airport have a connecting bus that will take you to the shuttle dock, and from Kobe Airport you can walk to the dock in around five minutes.
Let’s go on an actual trip from KIX to Kobe on the Bay Shuttle and see how it goes!
How to Buy A Ticket
For tourists coming to Japan there is a discounted 1,000 yen one-way adult ticket, which can be purchased at the first floor ticket counter in Kansai International Airport Terminal 1.
This ticket is only for foreign visitors, and is 45% off the regular price, so it’s a great deal.
Fares and ticket types
Tickets are usually 1,850 yen for adults, but the tourist discount is very advantageous. If you purchase a one-way ticket at the KIX counter on the day you enter Japan, you can get it for 1,000 yen. You can get a ticket for your return trip at this counter for 1,000 yen as well.
※You must show your passport to get this discount.
Find out more about fares and ticket deals here.
Timetable for the Bus to the Bay Shuttle Dock
The Bay Shuttle’s schedule is aligned with the flight arrival and departure schedules at KIX and Kobe Airport. The Bay Shuttle has to stop at nearby wharfs, not at the airport. So make sure you have enough time to get to the airport after you left the shuttle.
Buy a Ticket and Board the Connecting Bus
Get your ticket and head outside. The connecting bus boards outside the KIX Terminal 1 ticket counter (Bus stop 12). Be at the bus stop 5 minutes before the posted departure time.
This is the Bay Shuttle bus stop.
There is a sign posted to distinguish between the lines for the Bay Shuttle (ベイ・シャトル) bus and the outlet mall bus.
When the bus comes, the staff will guide you onboard. If you have luggage, the porter can stow it for you.
Ride the Bay Shuttle
When you get off the bus, the Bay Shuttle will be right in front of you.
With the spacious seating, you can sit comfortably.
The Bay Shuttle has no assigned seating, so sit wherever you like. It is said that the seats in the back experience less swaying.
On days with good weather, you can get a great view of the blue sea of Osaka Harbor, sparkling under the sun.
Arriving at Kobe Airport
When you arrive at Kobe Airport dock, a bus will be waiting. This bus will have you at Kobe Airport in a few minutes. You can also walk, which takes about 5 minutes.
This is the exterior of the Bay Shuttle loading area. You can find Kobe maps and guides, and there is free Wi-Fi throughout the terminal. There are also sockets available and free to use, in case you want to charge your mobile phone.
From Kobe Airport to the City
After the Bay Shuttle arrives at Kobe Airport, take the Port Liner to head into Sannomiya (三宮), the heart of Kobe. The Port Liner is the world’s first unmanned transportation system.
You will cross the ocean on the way to Sannomiya. You can enjoy a beautiful view during this commute. Here is a video you can see the view.
What do you think? On the Bay Shuttle, you can have a time-efficient, convenient and fun ride from Kansai International Airport to Kobe Airport and into the city center. If the weather is bad, there is a substitute bus from the terminal. If you can expect the Bay Shuttle will be crowded on a certain day, you can make online reservations here.
Next time you need to get to Kobe from Kansai International Airport, how about catching a lift on the Bay Shuttle?
Bay Shuttle (ベイ・シャトル)
Wi-Fi: Free to use within the terminal
Credit cards: VISA, Mastercard, JCB
Language: English, Korean, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese
Foreign language menus: Yes
Phone number: +81-78-304-0033 (Kobe-KIX Bay Shuttle Reservation Center)
Official website: Bay Shuttle