Keisei Skyliner (from/to Narita Airport)
For passengers arriving at Tokyo’s Narita Airport, the Keisei Skyliner is one of two rapid train services heading into central Tokyo – along with the Narita Express (N’EX). For many, either of these two trains will be the first they use in Japan and as such, their first introduction to the country’s fantastic public transport system.
The Keisei Skyliner operates from Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 at Narita Airport. Passengers arriving or departing from Terminal 3 can use the corridor between the two buildings to access the train at Terminal 2. The train runs from the airport to Keisei-Ueno Station, a small terminus nearby/within easy walking distance of Ueno Station. Enroute to Keisei-Ueno some services also stop at Aoto Station and Nippori Station.
It is important to note that the Keisei Skyliner is not covered by any Japan Rail (JR) Pass. The NEX is however covered, making it a popular option for international visitors holding a JR Pass.
Passengers arriving at Narita Airport and headed to the Ueno area, can use the Skyliner from the airport*. If you are headed to the areas around Tokyo Station, Ginza, Shinagawa, Roppongi, Odaiba or Yokohama you should use the NEX. While some NEX services continue onto stations including Shibuya, Shinjuku and Omiya, those stations can also be easily reached from Ueno using the Yamanote Line. So either train service if fine. From Narita Airport, expect the following travel times:
Aoto Station / 30 to 35 minutes
Nippori Station / 40 to 50 minutes
Keisei-Ueno Station / 45 to 55 minutes
For daily train schedules, see our ‘Keisei Skyliner Timetable’ page.
*Please note, if you are staying around Ueno but prefer to use the NEX because it is covered by the JR Pass, simply take the NEX to Tokyo Station and then transfer to a local train to Ueno – a journey of under 5-minutes. Both Tokyo Station and Ueno Stations are stops on the Hokuriku Shinkansen Line headed for Nagano.
Types of Carriages & Seating
The Keisei Skyliner only has one type of carriage in which all seats are reserved.Each carriage has four seats per row with an aisle in the middle i.e. two seats either side of the aisle, with space in front of the seats for luggage and overhead storage. Carriages also have dedicated luggage space at either end. Seats recline and have adjustable headrests, tables and power outlets. In summary, ordinary cars are perfectly comfortable and for most visitors, have everything you need. Toilets are available at the ends of carriages.
Accessing the Skyliner at Narita Airport
The Skyliner operates from Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 at Narita Airport. Passengers arriving at Terminal 3 can board at Terminal 2, by using the corridor that connects Terminals 2 and 3. At either Terminal 1 or 2, proceed down to the B1 level where you will find access to train lines including the Keisei-Skyliner and NEX bound for Tokyo. Ordinary train services also operate out of the station for visitors heading to other local destinations including Narita City.
Accessing Ueno Station from Keisei-Ueno Station
The Skyliner runs to and from Keisei-Ueno Station in central Tokyo. Keisei-Ueno and the larger Ueno Station are not physically joined but only around a 1-minute walk from each other. When arriving at Keisei-Ueno, proceed to the Main Exit and once outside, look to your left. You’ll see Ueno Station directly in front of you.
Ticketing & Travel Passes
A one-way journey from the airport to Keisei-Ueno or Nippori Station costs JPY2520 per adult. A one-way ticket to Aoto Station costs JPY2140. Return tickets and special discounted tickets are also available through the official Skyliner website.
Both Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 have a Skyliner & Keisei Information Center, open daily from 07:00 until 21:00. Foreign language-speaking staff – including English, Chinese and Korean – are usually on-hand to assist. Tickets are available using the ticket machines or service windows at the airport terminals. Tickets can also be purchased from machines in Terminal 3 and ticket machines/windows at Keisei-Ueno Station, Nippori Station and Aoto Station.
As stated above, the Keisei Skyliner is not covered by any JR Pass. The Narita Express (N’EX) is however covered by a range of JR passes.