2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan: Travel guide

Rugby fans around the world are already looking forward to the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan. It is the first time in the event’s history that it will take place outside the traditional heartland of the sport, and the first time it will be held in Asia.

The 6-week tournament will kick off on September 20 and will finish with the final on November 2 in Yokohama Stadium. The fixtures will be played in twelve stadiums around Japan, providing rugby fans with the perfect excuse to visit a fascinating and unique country.

Japan 2019 will be the ninth Rugby World Cup. The first ever competition was joint-hosted by Australia and New Zealand, two of Rugby’s giants, in 1987. Japan’s record may be more modest, but they will always be remembered for causing one the biggest upsets in the sport’s history. Incredibly, they beat South Africa 34-32 in the 2015 World Cup in England.

Rugby World Cup 2019 dates

The world cup will take place over a six-week period from September 20 to November 2. As the summer months may be uncomfortably hot in Japan, the temperatures in autumn are much more suitable for holding a sporting event, and also make for a great opportunity to enjoy the fall foliage!

  • Group matches: September 20 to October 13
  • Quarterfinals: October 19 and 20
  • Semifinals: October 26 and 27
  • Bronze final: November 1
  • Final: November 2

Where to buy tickets

The official supporter tour packages are already on sale. Fans can purchase them through official travel agents. The packages will vary in price and what is included. They will generally include a combination of match tickets, travel, and accommodation.

Tickets will go on general sale in September 2018, a year before the tournament starts. Fans will need to apply for tickets on the official website of the tournament.  Fans can already ready register by creating an account on the website.

There will be a ballot system for oversubscribed matches. Japanese rugby fans have a window of opportunity to buy tickets before they go on general sale.

Getting around Japan

Rugby fans can certainly take advantage of buying the Japan Rail Pass in advance of their trip. The pass offers team supporters unlimited access to the Japanese bullet trains (Shinkansen) which run between all the major cities including Tokyo and Yokohama.

The JR Pass also provides access to all the other Japan Rail national trains, buses, ferries, and airport transfers to international airports like Haneda, Narita and Kansai (Osaka).

The Japanese bullet trains are the are the fastest way to get around Japan. They can reach a speed of 320km/h (199mph) and there are nine lines which take you all around Japan.

Book your Japan Rail Pass now

Rugby World Cup 2019 venues

International Stadium Yokohama
The Nissan Stadium of Yokohama (formerly International Stadium) will host the Rugby World Cup final on November 2, 2019

The World Cup will take place in 12 twelve stadiums around Japan. Rugby fans will have the opportunity to travel by train between 12 fantastic locations such as Tokyo, Yokohama, Osaka, Fukuoka, Kobe, and Sapporo.

The opening match will be held at Tokyo Stadium and the final will take place at the International Stadium, Yokohama. Here are the key facts about the 12 stadiums of the Rugby World Cup 2019.

2019 Rugby World Cup venues
StadiumLocationCapacityNearest train station
Sapporo DomeSapporo41.410Sapporo Station (Hokkaido-Shinkansen Line)
Kamaishi Recovery Memorial StadiumKamaishi16.187Kamaishi Station (Kamaishi Line and Sanriku-Minamiriasu Line)
Kumagaya Rugby StadiumKumagaya24.000Kumagaya Station (Hokuriku-Shinkansen Line and Joetsu-Shinkansen Line)
Tokyo Stadium (Ajinomoto Stadium)Tokyo49.970Tobitakyu Station (Keio Line)
International Stadium (Nissan Stadium)Yokohama72.327Kozukue Station (Yokohama Line) or Shin-Yokohama Station (Tokaido-Sanyo
Shinkansen)
Shizuoka Stadium EcopaShizuoka50.889Aino Station (Tokaido Line)
City of Toyota StadiumToyota45.000Toyota-Shi Station (Meitetsu-Mikawa Line) or Shin-Toyota Station
(Aichikanjo Tetsudo Line)
Hanazono Rugby StadiumHigashiosaka (Osaka)30.000Higashi-Hanazono Station (Kintetsu-Nara Line)
Kobe Misaki StadiumKobe30.132Misakikoen Station (Kaigan Line) or Wadamisaki Station (Kaigan Line or
Wadamisaki Line)
Fukuoka Hakatanomori Stadium (Level Five
Stadium)
Fukuoka22.563Fukuokakuko Station (Kuko Line)
Kumamoto StadiumKumamoto32.000Hikarinomori Station (Hohi Line)
Oita StadiumOita40.000Takio Station (Hohi Line)

Rugby World Cup 2019 fixtures

The format of the 2019 Rugby World Cup will be the same as the last four competitions. Twenty teams will be divided into four pools of five teams. The top two teams from each pool with qualify for the knockout stages.

Group stage

Pool APool BPool CPool D
IrelandNew ZealandEnglandAustralia
ScotlandSouth AfricaFranceWales
JapanItalyArgentinaGeorgia
RussiaNamibiaUnited StatesFiji
SamoaCanadaTongaUruguay

 

Tournament schedule by pool
DateMatchKickoffVenue
Pool A
Fri, 9/20/2019Japan vs Russia19:45Tokyo Stadium
Sun, 9/22/2019Ireland vs Scotland16:45International Stadium Yokohama
Tue, 9/24/2019Russia vs Samoa19:15Kumagaya Rugby Stadium
Sat, 9/28/219Japan vs Ireland16:15Shizuoka Stadium Ecopa
Mon, 9/30/2019Scotland vs Samoa19:15Kobe Misaki Stadium
Thu, 10/03/2019Ireland vs Russia19:15Kobe Misaki Stadium
Sat, 10/05/2019Japan vs Samoa19:00Toyota Stadium
Wed, 10/09/2019Scotland vs Russia16:15Shizuoka Stadium Ecopa
Sat, 10/12/2019Ireland vs Samoa19:45Fukuoka Hakatanomori Stadium
Sun, 10/13/2019Japan vs Scotland19:45International Stadium Yokohama
Pool B
Sat, 9/21/2019New Zealand vs South Africa18:45International Stadium Yokohama
Sun, 9/22/2019Italy vs Namibia14:45Hanazono Rugby Stadium
Thu, 9/26/2019Italy vs Canada16:45Fukuoka Hakatanomori Stadium
Sat, 9/28/2019South Africa vs Namibia18:45Toyota stadium
Wed, 10/02/2019New Zealand vs Canada19:15Oita Stadium
Fri, 10/06/2019South Africa vs Italy18:45Shizuoka Stadium ecopa
Sun, 10/06/2019New Zealand vs Namibia13:45Tokyo Stadium
Tue, 10/08/South Africa vs Canada19:15Kobe Misaki Stadium
Sat, 10/12/2019New Zealand vs Italy13:45Toyota Stadium
Sun, 10/13/2019Namibia vs Canada13:45Kamaishi Recovery Memorial Stadium
Pool C
Sat, 9/21/2019France vs Argentina16:15Tokyo Stadium
Sun, 9/22/2019England vs Toga19:15Sapporo Dome
Thu, 9/26/2019England vs USA19:45Kobe Misaki Stadium
Sat, 9/28/2019Argentina vs Tonga13:45Hanazono Rugby Stadium
Wed, 10/02/2019France vs USA16:45Fukuoka Hakatanomori Stadium
Sat, 10/05/2019England vs Argentina17:00Tokyo Stadium
Sun, 10/06/2019France vs Tonga16:45Kumamoto Stadium
Wed, 10/09/Argentina vs USA13:45Kumagaya Rugby Stadium
Sat, 10/12/2019England vs France17:15International Stadium Yokohama
Sun, 10/13/2019USA vs Tonga14:45Hanazono Rugby Stadium
Pool D
Sat, 9/21/2019Australia vs Fiji16:15Sapporo Dome
Mon, 9/23/2019Wales vs Georgia19:15Toyota Stadium
Wed, 9/25/2019Fuji vs Uruguay14:15Kamaishi Recovery Memorial Stadium
Sun, 9/29/2019Georgia vs Uruguay14:15Kumagaya Rugby Stadium
Sun, 9/29/2019Australia vs Wales16:45Tokyo Stadium
Thu, 10/03/2019Georgia vs Fiji14:15Hanazono Rugby Stadium
Sat, 10/05/2019Australia sv Uruguay14:15Oita Stadium
Wed, 10/09/Wales vs Fiji18:45Oita Stadium
Fri, 10/11/2019Australia vs Georgia19:15Shizuoka Stadium Ecopa
Sun, 10/13/2019Wales vs Uruguay17:15Kumamoto Stadium

Quarterfinals

  1. Winner of Pool C VS Runners-up of Pool D. 19 October 2019 at 16:15 JST in Oita Stadium.
  2. Winner of Pool B VS Runners-up of Pool A. 19 October 2019 at 19:15 JST in Tokyo Stadium.
  3. Winner of Pool D VS Runners-up of Pool C. 20 October 2019 at 16:15 JST in Oita Stadium.
  4. Winner of Pool A VS Runners-up of Pool B. 20 October 2019 at 16:15 JST in Tokyo Stadium.

Semi-finals

  1. Winner of Quarterfinal 1 VS Winner of Quarterfinal 2.  26 October 2019 at 17:00 JST in Yokohama Stadium.
  2. Winner of Quarterfinal 3 VS Winner of Quarterfinal 4.  26 October 2019 at 18:00 JST in Yokohama Stadium.

Bronze final

Loser of Semifinal 1 VS Loser of Semifinal 2.

1 November 2019 at 18:00 JST in Tokyo Stadium.

2019 Rugby World Cup final

Winner of Semifinal 1 VS Winner of Semifinal 2.

The ninth Rugby World Cup final will take place in the International Stadium of Yokohama on November 2, at 18:00 JST (UTC +09).

 

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4 thoughts on “2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan: Travel guide”
  1. Thanks for the travel guide for Rugby World cup 2019. Can you please add Sapporo Dome address. I already searched many places but not seeing any where.

    1. Hi Henry,

      Thanks for pointing that out. To keep it simple, we preferred to just add the nearest train station. Anyway, you can find the Sapporo Dome on Google or Apple Maps 🙂 The address is 1 Hitsujigaoka, Toyohira Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido 062-0045.

      Happy travels!

  2. Dear Sir/Madam,

    I hope this finds you well.

    I am Billi Skiff from Bitgame Labs in Hong Kong. I would like to enquire about what available advertising opportunities there is for the Rugby World Cup 2019. Whether it be on the trains or in the stations located closet to thew stadiums.

    I look forward to hearing from you.

    Best,
    Billi

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