My eldest daughter, Eri, came back home today. She lives in Tokyo and attends a big name university. She usually uses airplanes, but this time she came back by train.
I'll introduce a unique ticket of JR (Japan Railways). JR is the biggest railway company in Japan. They issue a "Youth 18 ticket", which she used this time. It contains the word "youth", but anyone can utilize this ticket, even aged people.
JR has various types of trains. Some of them request additional tickets, for example an express ticket, a super-express ticket, a berth ticket,,,etc. "Youth 18 ticket" is only for ordinary trains except these trains. Ordinary trains stop at every station and take more time than express trains, so "Youth 18 ticket" is for people who have enough time. When we turn 18, we graduate from high school and some go on to universities or technical colleges. Generally speaking, they are not rich, but have a lot of time. JR wants them to travel across Japan. 18 of the "Youth 18 ticket" is named this way. As far as using ordinary trains, you have only to get one "Youth 18 ticket" per day.
Eri utilized this ticket this time. Direct flights between Tokyo and Matsuyama cost 25000 yen, but a "Youth 18 ticket" is only 1600 yen. She saved big money. She left her dormitory at about 4 o'clock in the morning and got on the train at the nearest station at about 4:30. She ate breakfast, lunch and dinner in the train and finally reached Matsuyama city just before the date changed.
berth (船・列車などの) 寝台