Hokkaido Shinkansen 北海道新幹線
The Hokkaido Shinkansen is a shinkansen line running from Shin-Aomori Station on the northern tip of Honshu in Aomori to Hakodate in Hokkaido through the Seikan Tunnel that connects Honshu with Hokkaido.
Thus the Hokkaido Shinkansen becomes an extension of the 674km-long Tohoku Shinkansen connecting Tokyo and Aomori.
The route is due to be expanded from Hakodate to Sapporo in 2030 or 2031 brought forward from the original planned opening in 2035.
Train Types on the Hokkaido Shinkansen
Two types of train services will operate on the Hokkaido Shinkansen: limited-stop Hayabusa services between Tokyo Station in Tokyo or Sendai and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto, and semi-fast Hayate services between Morioka or Shin-Aomori Station and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto.
Hayabusa - this is the fastest shinkansen service from Tokyo to Shin-Aomori and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto with limited stops. The Hayabusa train does not have non-reserved seating. Standing tickets can be purchased if the train is full.
Hayate - Tokyo to Morioka or Shin-Aomori and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto with limited stops and no stops between Omiya and Sendai. Less frequent than the Hayabusa. The Hayate train does not have non-reserved seating. Standing tickets can be purchased if the train is full.
Carriages will include a GranClass super deluxe car as well as Green Car and ordinary carriages.
From March 26, 2016 there will be ten return Hayabusa services daily between Tokyo and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto, plus one return service daily between Shin-Aomori and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto.
One return Hayate service will run daily between Morioka and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto, with one return service daily between Shin-Aomori and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto.
The new stations between Shin-Aomori and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto are Oku Tsugaru Imabetsu on Honshu and Kikonai on Hokkaido.
The fastest journey time between Tokyo and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto will initially be 4 hours, 2 minutes. The Shin-Aomori to Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto leg will be 61 minutes. Trains must presently slow down in the Seikan Tunnel.