Revaty Aizu 132: Kinugawa-Onsen to Shimo-Imaichi by Free Ride Zone Limited Express Train

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The Limited Express Revaty is a service formed of the newest trains running on Tobu Railway since 2017. While Limited Express trains require a relay train to meet up at Shimo-Imaichi to transfer passengers to the branch line which the Limited Express train does not serve, the Limited Express Revaty takes away this “inconvenience” by having the train split up into the different eqally-popular branch lines.

For this journey, I will be taking the Limited Express Revaty Aizu 132, not because it’s technically covered by the JR TOKYO Wide Pass but it is a free ride zone on the Kinugawa-Onsen to Shimo-Imaichi and the Revaty Aizu operates like a local train on this sector stopping at all stations without requiring an additional Limited Express ticket.

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The line from Kinugawa-Onsen to Shimo-Imaichi runs surprisingly infrequent trains with irregular frequencies. The wait between the previous train and the next was a whopping 53 minutes, and I now have a 32 minute for the next train.

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Some brochures for Tobu Railway services available around the station hall.

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SL Taiju souvenir coins are also available for sale.

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I was hoping that the train information screens were wrong, but nope, it says right here on the published timetable that the next train is at 2.07pm. As this was a weekday, the SL Taiju was not running. If it were, I would have been more than happy to wait.

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The ticket office at Kinugawa-Onsen Station.

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Heading through the manned lane into the platform, some SL Taiju coal were on display at the counter.

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Some random railway collectibles are also on display.

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The platform information in the platform area.

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Platforms 3 and 4 are located on the other side.

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Heading up the escalator to the bridge.

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Crossing the bridge over the railway tracks.

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Heading down the staircase.

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Heading down to Platform 4.

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The Revaty car numbers are readied along the platform.

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The short sector I’ll be travelling on.

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The queue area for the SL Taiju coaches are also labelled.

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The station sign and network information at Kinugawa-Onsen Station.

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The signal changed to green shortly before departure time, which means the train is arriving.

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A platform staff announces the train’s arrival and route details.

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The Tobu 500 Series Limited Express Revaty arriving in Kinugawa-Onsen Station.

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The Limited Express Revaty Aizu 132 is bound for Asakusa.

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The logo of the Limited Express Revaty.

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The interior of the Limited Express Revaty. Only one class of travel, Ordinary Car, is available.

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The modern seats on the Limited Express Revaty.

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The legroom on board the Limited Express Revaty.

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Charging ports are available by the side of the seats.

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Each Revaty set is made up of just 3 cars.

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Departing from Kinugawa-Onsen Station.

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While all seats are reserved on the Limited Express Revaty, passengers on the local sector may take a seat wherever available.

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The Limited Express Revaty Aizu 132 makes stops at all stations between Aizu-Tajima and Shimo-Imaichi.

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The curved seats on the Limited Express Revaty are comfortable enough even without reclining.

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The scenic view on the Tobu Kinugawa Line.

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“Passengers can ride this train as far as Shimo-Imaichi Station with just a regular ticket. However, please be aware that you will not be guaranteed a seat unless you purchase an express ticket as well.”

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Crossing with a local train at Okuwa Station.

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As the Revaty Aizu arrives, the local train closes its doors and departs. A quick point change and crossing here.

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Someone created a Mount Fuji in the garden.

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More beautiful scenery along the line.

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Approaching the junction to Shimo-Imaichi.

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Approaching Shimo-Imaichi Station.

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Arriving at Shimo-Imaichi Station.

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Disembarking from the Revaty Aizu at Shimo-Imaichi Station.

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Heading to the end of the train. I wasn’t in a hurry to transfer trains just yet, since I know what’s going to come up.

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The destination sign of the Revaty shows the next station along with the destination.

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The platform staff prepares the train and track for the incoming Revaty Kegon from Tobu-Nikko to combine with the Revaty Aizu to form a 6-car train to Asakusa. Because sending a relay train and having a cross-platform transfer apparently seems too troublesome for passengers.

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The Limited Express Revaty Kegon 32 arriving in Shimo-Imaichi Station from Tobu-Nikko.

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Preparing to couple the Limited Express Revaty Kegon 32 behind the Limited Express Revaty Aizu 132.

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The coupling was done without any jerks to the front train.

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The coupled Limited Express 特急リバティけごん 32 and Limited Express Revaty Aizu 132, ready to form the combined service to Asakusa.

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Here, I headed up to see the SL Taiju Exhibition Hall and Turntable Square before continuing on to Tobu-Nikko.

Overall, a rather surprising and pleasant ride on the Limited Express Revaty Aizu since I wasn’t even planning on getting it during this trip and to experience such comfort for a short local train ride. Perhaps if I get the Tobu Nikko Pass in future will I spend more time exploring Tobu Railway.

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