Train: Limited Express Kamui 28 (Hokkaido Japan Railway)
Route: Asahikawa to Sapporo
Time: 14:30- 15:55
Duration: 1h25min (137km)
Seat& Class: Coach 4, Seat 4A (Reserved U Seat, Ordinary Car)
Between Asahikawa and Sapporo stations, four kinds of limited express trains are operated: Kamui, Lilac, Okhotsk (two direct services from Abashiri/ East) and Soya (one direct service from Wakkanai/ North). Kamui and Lilac are the main limited express trains between these two cities, and runs every 45 minutes, approximately.
The major difference between Kamui and Lilac is the interior configuration. While Kamui has only Ordinary Car (reserved U seat and non-reserved seat), Lilac has both Green Car (First Class seat) and Ordinary Car (Reserved normal seat and Non-reserved seat).
Kamui’s ‘Reserved U seat’ on Ordinary Car is technically categorised as Ordinary Car (Second Class), but the seat is designed more comfortably. It is like a Premium Second Class (like airlines’ Premium Economy), whose seat comfort is between Green Car (First Class seat) and Ordinary Car (Second Class normal seat).
To my surprise, the fare of Kamui’s reserved U seat (Ordinary Car) is the same as that of other limited express trains’ reserved normal seat (Ordinary Car). Considering that Kamui’s reserved U seat has wider seat pitch and electric socket on every seat, it is of great use. You can search for fares and timetables here, and can also make a seat reservation here (Terms and Conditions concerning online advanced booking of reserved seats).
When you have an opportunity to stop over at Asahikawa Railway Station, why not take a walk for five minutes? Going out from the South way out, you will find a small, tranquil park. If you exit from the North way out, you are able to roam the city centre.