SRS, the Special Rapid Service — one kind of japanese express — no, rapid trains operated by JR West. Almost all residents in Kinki region has known that, JR West launched a new service A-Seat, which is connected to SRS.
I’d had no plan to use the service. In one day, “A-Seat” on a digital timetable bord came into my sight, and “Oh, that’s just the A Seat!” I excited. Now the A-Seat is hardly seen because it may be still under trial operation, so that I got on it straight.
You can sit any empty seat and when you sit then you are charged. In short, it’s unreserved and later payment system.
There is relatively less noise in a car of A-seat because a car type is クハ (the symbol ハ denotes trailer, in other words, with neither motors nor engines). However it’s not less than limited express train or bullet train. While you can enjoy limited express like atmosphere easily. I heard type 223, operated as SRS, shares undercarriage design with type 161 and 163, operated as limited express especially Thunderbird, so that she is just the Thunderchick! And she reminds me of lost JNR’s expresses…
A-Seat also supplies a power for passengers so you can charge your devices like mobile phone or laptop. It’s may be useful for some people (I didn’t use it because every my devices has tough battery).
Declaration of the destination
The uniform 500 jpy fare per 1 ride on A-Seat should be charged for the seat, it must have no relation with milage. But I was reqired to declare my destination (a station I get off the A-seat train, not a station I go out of) when I got on and sat a seat. Hmm, is it only a questionnaire? because this operation may be trial… I thought. However the destination I declared was printed on the receipt. I have no idea why JR West do it. Is there some vulnerability to do some cheat if the destination is undefinite?
Limited express like atmosphere is more worth for me than its comfortability. When you feel like traveling on a limited express but too lazy to make reservation, the A-Seat is just for you! … How can that be?
She inherited 187’s character, took a step for a limited express.