When you travel in Japan, you will be amazed at the extensive rail transportation services available. But did you know that railroad stations are also excellent tourist facilities? Terminal stations have been renovated into shopping mall-like spaces where visitors can enjoy shopping and dining, with not only boxed lunches and stores selling local specialties, but also famous restaurants and clothing stores. These spaces are called EKINAKA (meaning 'inside the station' in Japanese).

However, stations have ticket gates and a ticket is required to enter them. If you do not use the train but wish to enjoy the facilities inside the ticket gates, you can buy a station admission ticket. Admission tickets can be purchased from an automatic ticket vending machine (some railroad companies also offer IC card entry).