Narita Express: Tokyo Airport transfer with the JR Pass

Narita Express

The Narita Express – also known as N’EX – is the most convenient Tokyo city transfer from and to Narita International Airport, which hosts most of the overseas flights to Japan.

This limited express train service is fast, reliable and punctual, and you can ride it for free with your Japan Rail Pass. Find out all the travel details in this post.

Narita Express is a Limited Express train, provided by JR East. To access the train, the desired seats must be reserved in advance (valid for JR Pass holders as well). You can do this easily at any of the following locations:

  • Narita Airport Stations (Terminal 1 and 2-3)
  • Japan Railways ticket offices
  • Travel service centers
  • Reserved seat ticket machines

Important note: Passengers with no seat reservations will not be allowed to board any of the N’EX trains. Please, make sure to reserve your seat before boarding. Furthermore, all passengers must follow the instructions and seat indications, written on their reservation ticket.

Narita Express trains

Similar to most trains, Narita Express uses a separate railway, which means traffic never blocks it. The train offers beautiful views to and from the city, as the airport is located outside of Tokyo area.

Snack cars inside the trains pass by at regular intervals, offering tasty and affordable Japanese appetizers and drinks. Facilities on the train are well maintained and spotless – in the true Japanese spirit.

Green car interior
Interior of a Narita Express green car – Photo by DAJF @ Wikimedia

Narita Express trains offer luggage space and areas where you can lock your bags. Each separate seat provides a rather large seating area, which can also be used for placing your all luggage just before you. Besides, overhead compartments above each seat are also available.

Narita Express map

The N’EX has two stops in Narita Airport, Terminal 1 and Terminal 2-3. The routes are marked in red in the following map.

Narita Express route map
Narita Express route map (in red) – Image courtesy of Narita Airport

Main stations include:

  • Narita (town)
  • Chiba
  • Tokyo Station
  • Shinbashi
  • Hamamatshucho (connection with Haneda Airport via Tokyo Monorail)
  • Shinagawa
  • Shibuya
  • Shinjuku
  • Yokohama
  • Ikebukuro

Travel times and schedules

N’EX trains take approximately 1 hour to get from and to Tokyo Station (first stop city center), 1 hour and 15 minutes to Shibuya Station and around 1 hour and 20 minutes to Shinjuku Station.

The service operates 27 trains daily, which allows for the regularity and punctuality of the service. All N’EX trains anew their journey from Tokyo or Narita Airport every 30 minutes.

Please refer to the JR East schedules page to check the latest schedules from and to Narita Airport.

Narita Express tickets

There are two types of N’EX tickets: for Standard and Green Cars (First Class, similar to the Japan Rail Standard and Green class tickets). The price for each class is different (detailed below), however, the standard seats are extremely comfortable and spacious

Conditions, costs and seat reservations

All N’EX seat reservations are available for free to any Japan Rail Pass holder.

The airport transfer service is part of the many benefits the JR Pass has to offer. Holders can reserve a seat at any JR ticket office in Narita Airport, before boarding the train and without any additional payment.

Moreover, there is no limitation to the number of times a JR holder can use Narita Express, whereas other transportation cards like SUICA, are not valid for the service.

Narita Express train with Mount Fuji
In the summer, special services connect Narita Airport with the Mt. Fuji area – Image courtesy of JR East

Prices without the JR Pass

For all other cases, the single-trip prices of N’EX are the following:

Terminals 1, 2 and 3 to

  • Tokyo Station – 3,020¥ / 4,560¥ Green Class (GR)
  • Shinagawa – 3,190¥ / 4,730¥ GR
  • Shibuya – 3,190¥ / 4,730¥ GR
  • Shinjuku – 3,190¥ / 4,730¥ GR
  • Ikebukuro – 3,190¥ / 4,730¥ GR
  • Omiya – 3, 840¥ / 5,380¥ GR
  • Yokohama – 4,290¥ / 5,830¥ GR
  • Ofuna – 4,620¥ / 6,160¥ GR

Round-trip ticket fares are usually around 33% off two single trips. Please refer to JR East page for further information.

Original cover photo by Nanashinodenshaku @ Wikimedia

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48 thoughts on “Narita Express: Tokyo Airport transfer with the JR Pass”

  1. Hi I will be arriving at Narita and going to Tokyo.

    I am enquiring on can I purchase Narita express ticket on line in advance?
    Can I buy the ticket on board the train?
    Or is there ticket machine that I can buy the ticket.
    If I have to get the ticket from your ticket office and I may miss my train. Is there express queue for buying Narita express ticket?

    Thank you for your reply.

    1. Hello Pat,
      The Narita Express tickets cannot be purchased online unless you are a Japanese citizen and have a local bank account.
      Unfortunately, there are no ticket vending machines nor an express queue.
      In all other cases, you will be required to get the tickets from a JR ticket office, because the Narita Express has reserved-only seats, which means that you will book your seat in advance, before boarding.
      Regarding the Narita Express timetable – the trains run every hour.

      Kind regards,
      The JRailPass team

  2. Hi! Good afternoon. My family of 6 are planning to go to Osaka ( 4 nights), Kyoto ( 2 nights), Nagoya ( 2 nights), Tokyo ( 4 nights). Would it be advisable for us to get the JR Pass? Please help me because I am so confused.

    1. Hi Jorge,

      It will always depend on the kind of trip you want to make. If you plan to stay for long periods within a city, the Japan Rail Pass might not be the best option but if you are traveling around the country and making day-trips from Tokyo or Kyoto, for example, it should pay off. If you want to assess if the pass is the most cost effective ticket for your trip we recommend you to check Hyperdia – he number 1 Japanese online transportation planning tool. It will give you specific prices for each trip so that you can compare the cost to the Japan Rail Pass’ one.

      Have an awesome trip!

  3. My family will be entering Japan at haneda airport and then travel to atsugi.

    What’s the train route to get from haneda to atsugi naval base?

    What’s the train route to get from atsugi to Mt Fuji?

    1. Hi Emme,

      From Haneda airport you can take the Tokyo Monorail, included in your Japan Rail Pass, that will take you to Tokyo city center. Once there you should look for a train that takes you to the closest station to Atsugi Naval Base, however please keep in mind this can be a long trip if you intend to take trains all the way. For futher insight on itineraries and train times we recommend you to check Hyperdia – the number 1 Japanese online transportation planning tool.

      Have a nice trip!

  4. Hello!

    The place I’ll be staying after arriving in Japan will be in Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo. I was told that the place is close to the following stations:
    -Ginza station (Ginza Line, Marunouchi Line)
    -Higashi Ginza station (Hibiya Line)
    -Takaracho station (Asakusa Line)
    -Shintomicho station (Yurakucho Line)

    Can you please advise which station is included in the JR pass (if any)? And if not, how can I transfer onto a different transportation system to get to one of the stations.

    Thank you!!

    1. Hi Lee!

      Japan Rail Pass covers lines more than stations (a station may serve several lines). If you are looking for included trains, the Japan Rail Pass covers all JR Group limited express trains, express trains, rapid and local ones. Shinkansen bullet trains are also covered, except of NOZOMI and MIZUHO. Furthermore, the JR Pass can be used on the Tokyo Monorail, the Yamanote line (Tokyo Metro); the Aoimori Railway between Aomori and Hachinohe; the JR Ishikawa Railway between Kanazawa and Tsubata; the Ainokaze Toyama Railway beween Toyama and Takaoka; Narita Express from Narita Airport to Tokyo.

      If you want to look for the best itineraries included in your Japan Rail Pass we recommend you to check Hyperdia paying attention to filters as explained in our Hyperdia guide.

      We hope you have an amazing time in Japan!

  5. Hello,
    I’m in Japan from 27th May (landing at Narita Airport) till 11th June 2017- which makes it 16days.
    The JR Pass is for 14days.
    I’m in Tokyo for 1st 4 days and the last 2 days.
    Day 1 Narita to Asakusa
    Day 2 Planning to go to Fuji Kawaguchiko-machi
    Which is the best recommendation to use the JR pass?
    Thanx
    Suneela

  6. Hello,

    I am visiting from June 5 – 13 and will be staying in Tokyo near the Sky Tower. We are flying into Narita. Besides visiting the city we would also like to go to Kyoto. Would the purchase of the JR pass be best or would purchasing for those areas be more economical.
    Thank you,
    Julia

    1. Hi Julia!

      The Japan Rail Pass gives you access to a wide range of fast-speed, rapid and local trains all over Japan, as well as many bus lines and selected ferry services. It is the most cost-efficient way to travel all over Japan for a limitless number of trips, restricted only by the selection of a time-frame. Choosing between 7, 14 and 21 days of JR Pass validity, you will be able to access any part of Japan and also have the opportunity to enjoy the world-famous Shinkansen bullet-train and travel with 320 km/h. You can get from Tokyo to Kyoto in 1 hour and 40 minutes, making it the fastest way to travel. You should take the Shinkansen Hikari train from either Tokyo Station or Shinagawa Station in central Tokyo, and arrive at Kyoto Station. Transfers from Narita Airport to central Tokyo are also included.

      Enjoy your trip!

  7. Hi! Good afternoon. My family of 4 (2 Adult, 2 Children) are planning to go to Osaka ( 4 nigths) arrive at Kansai Airport, Kyoto (Osaka to Kyoto day trip), Mt Fuji (day trip), Tokyo ( 4 nights), we are depart from Narita Airport Would it be advisable for us to get the JR Pass? Please help me because I am so confused.

    1. Hi Kelly Lim!

      The Japan Rail Pass will cover all the trips you want to make:

      – It includes the Haruka Express, which will take you from Kansai Airport to Osaka at no additional cost.
      – The Osaka Loop line, which consists of an inner and an outer line, one running clockwise and the other, counterclockwise.
      – You will be able to freely and unlimitedly move between Osaka, Kyoto and also Tokyo.
      – Trip to Mount Fuji will be at no additional cost.
      – When in Tokyo you will be able to take many lines at no additional cost (special attention to the Yamanote line).
      – And last but not leat – you will also be able to reach Narita Airport through Narita Express since it is also included in the Japan Rail Pass.

      We hope this information is useful.
      Enjoy your trip!

  8. Hi, my family and I (7 adults, 1 child) will be traveling to Tokyo (Narita) June 25th-July 7th. It will be better to get the 7days or the 14 days JR Tickets?. Also, we are allow to go to the same city/place more than once?. Places we will like to go: Tokyo, Kyoto, Mount Fiji, the Hakone Onsen in Kanagawa, Hiroshima or Nagasaki. How many places I can go from Tokyo in one day trip? I am so exciting but also so confused.
    Thank you!

    1. Hi Marisa!

      Yes, the Japan Rail Pass allows you to make unlimited trips while it is still valid. Also all the mentioned trips are fully covered by the pass:

      Tokyo to Kyoto round trips. You should take the Shinkansen Hikari train from either Tokyo Station or Shinagawa Station in central Tokyo, and arrive at Kyoto Station.
      Mount Fuji and the Hakone area can also be reached with the pass.
      Hakone Onsen in Kanagawa is located only one hour from Tokyo. Take the Tokaido Shinkansen from Tokyo Station to Odawara. From there, you will have to use non-JR trains or buses to reach Hakone but main part of the trip will be covered for you.
      – To reach Hiroshima you can use your JR Pass to take the Sanyo Shinkansen line’s Hikari bullet train from Tokyo Station to the Shin-Osaka Station. You will then transfer to the Sakura train (on the same line) and arrive in Hiroshima at Hiroshima Station.
      – The Kyushu Shinkansen is a branch line that will run from Shin-Tosu to Nagasaki.

      If you are wondering what else you can visit in a day-trip from Tokyo, we strongly recommend you to read our article Best 5 day trips from Tokyo by train. It is full of good ideas on where to travel!

      Have an amazing trip!

  9. Hi do you have 10 days option? I’m will be arrive Tokyo on 18 Nov and travelling to kyoto on 19 Nov for 2 days, Osaka on 21 Nov for 3 days therefore i need travel back to Tokyo by 24 of Nov. If i get the 7 days JR Pass and activate on 18 Nov, does it mean i still able to use it on 24 Nov travel from Osaka back to Tokyo?

    1. Hi Vivian!

      A Japan Rail Pass can be valid for either 7, 14 or 21 consecutive days, no other options are available.

      The Japan Rail Pass validity period is calculated in days, not in hours. Therefore, if you have purchased a 7-day pass and your activation date (when you first use the pass) is the 18th of November, the exact expiration time will be midnight on November 14th to travel from Osaka to Tokyo. Your JR Pass will be valid until the end of the journey.

      Have a nice trip!

  10. Hi im going tokyo from 29 march 2018 – 6 march 2018, my flight abit weird due to arrival in narita airport and going back home from haneda, originally plan is tokyo > osaka > kyoto > nara > mt fuji and some of the famous place that havent figure out..im very confuse about jr pass..not so sure want to buy JR pass or not…my trip is about 9d8n..the first day reach tokyo is already 5:30pm and would like to ask about JR pass can use in Tokyo metro? please give me some advice thank you very much!

    1. Hi Nathan!

      The Japan Rail Pass will fully cover the trips you mention. In case you decided to travel with it we would recommend you to purchase it online at http://www.jrailpass.com.

      – From Narita Airport to central Tokyo you can take the Narita Express. In this article you will find all the details on how to get it and where to get off.
      – While in Tokyo you can use 5 JR lines to move within the city: the Yamanote Line, the Keihin-Tohoku Line, the Rapid Chuo Line, the local Chuo-Sobu Line and other metropolitan lines that circulate on the outskirts of the city such as the JR Keiyo, Musashi, Nambu and Yokohama lines.
      Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka are connected with by the Tokaido Shinkansen line, included with the Japan Rail Pass. You can make as many trips as you want at no additional charge in this line.
      – In order to get from Kyoto to Nara, begin at Kyoto Station. Take the Miyakoji Rapid Train, on the JR Nara line to JR Nara Station. The rapid trains run twice per hour, and the 45-minute trip is covered by your JR Pass.
      – To go to Mount Fuji you can take the Kodama Shinkansen at Kyoto Station.

      We hope you have an amazing trip!

  11. Hi, we are going to Tokyo on the 4th Nov and departing 14th Nov and we are travelling with 4 adults, 5 children and 1 infant. Our itiniery is a bit messed up, however we would like to plan our trip as follow; Arrive at Narita Airport 3pm and travel directly to Osaka for 7 days 6 nights
    From Osaka we would like to take day trip to Kyoto and other surrounding and then back to Tokyo for 3nights before flying out via Narita Airport. Can you please help whether it’s worth purchasing 7 or 14 days JR Railway pass? And is their a direct Shinkansens line that will take us from Narita Airport to Osaka Dotonbori? Can you please help as i am so confuse.

    Kim

    1. Hi Kim,

      We suggest you purchase the 14-day JR Pass, this way it covers all of your trip especially since you will be moving around quite a lot. It includes both Narita Express transfers from and to Narita Airport and transportation in Osaka and Tokyo with the Jr lines. There is no direct Shinkansen line from Narita Airport to Osaka Dotonbori. However, there are connecting lines. The Narita Express will take you to Tokyo central station, then you have to take the Shinkansen to Shin-Osaka station. Then to get to Namba you can take the direct Midosuji Line, but this is not covered by the JR Pass, so you would have to buy a specific ticket. If you want to use the JR line to get to Namba then we suggest you check out our article Getting around Osaka that explains everything in detail. 🙂

  12. Hello, I will stay for 9 days and I will get 7 days JRP, the N’EX that is included is posible the lata day that I will be in Japan or it is only valid until 7 day like the JRP?

    1. Hi Luis!

      You can take the N’EX every day you want, but you will also be entitled to do it at no additional cost during the validity period of your Japan Rail Pass (during the 7 days it is active).
      Should you use it out of this scope of time, you would have to pay individual tickets for it.

      Enjoy your trip!

  13. Hi,

    I am travelling to Japan next month. Could you please let me know if JR Tokyo Wide Pass is valid on Narita Express?

    Thanks,
    Anna

  14. Hi, we are going Japan on 17-Oct, will arrive at Narita Airport 0845hrs and transit to Osaka through Haneda Airport. We will only have 4hr30min for this transferring between Narita-Haneda Airport; include immigration clearance and check-in luggage at Haneda Airport. We are planned to get Japan Rail Pass. Please advise the safer way of this transfer between Narita-Haneda Airport by using Japan Rail Pass.

    1. Hi Yih!

      Once you land at Narita Airport, you will be able to use your Japan Rail Pass in Narita Express. It will take you straight to Hamamatsucho in a little more than 1 hour, where you will also be entitled to take the Tokyo Monorail to Haneda Airport at no additional cost. Tokyo Monorail will take around 13 minutes.

      Please remember you will need to activate your Japan Rail Pass upon arrival at Japan (this can be easily done at Narita Airport).

      Have an amazing trip!

  15. Hi,
    So I can use the JR pass from Tokyo to Mt Fuji?!

    And the pass, is it only available in the airport? Im confused now coz I read that we need to have it before arriving in JPN (Narita).

    Thanks.

    1. Hi Rob!

      Yes – you can use the Japan Rail Pass to travel from Tokyo to Mount Fuji. You will just need to take JR Tokaido line for Kozu from Tokyo Station, using your JR Pass. Once at Kozu (Kanagawa), take the JR Gotemba Line for Numazu and get off at Gotemba Station.

      Regarding on where to purchase the Japan Rail Pass, it is always adviceable to purchase it online from any official vendor like this one. Although it is possible to purchase it at certain points of Japan, its cost is higher and can only be paid in yens.

      Have an amazing trip!

  16. Hi! If we purchase the JR Pass and have it activated upon our arrival in Narita Airport, can we use it right away to ride the Narita Express?

  17. Hi
    We have purchased a 7 day JR pass for our 10 day stay during which we will spend 4 nights in Tokyo, 4 nights in Osaka and 2 nights in Tokyo before flying out from Narita on 22 October.
    Please can you clarify that we will only be able to ride the N’Ex for free on our outward bound journey to Narita?
    We don’t plan on on activating our pass until our 3rd day (15 October) in Tokyo before taking the Shinkansen to Osaka on the 16 October.
    Thanks in advance!

  18. 28th Sept 2017
    Hi Sir,
    Can I ride on the NEX on the 9th Oct 2017, if my activation validity of the 7 days JR Pass starts from the 11th Oct 2017?
    Thank you.

    1. I am afraid you can´t do so. Your Japan Rail Pass will start working for 7 consecutive days, once you active it. Therefore, you won´t be able to use it before the activation date.
      Also, keep in mind that once you purchase your JR Voucher, you cannot add extra days. And once you exchange it for the for the actual JR Pass and activate it, you cannot modify its validity period in any way.
      Check out our web with all the information about using your JR Pass

  19. Hi, I am coming to Tokyo Narita on 11/17/17 at around 330pm, do you think it is possible for me to catch the 6pm train to Osaka? I am planning to stay in Osaka for 3 days then go back to Tokyo for 4 days then leave for VN. JR pass would be perfect for my trip right? I want to also do a day trip to Kyoto.

    1. Hello Thien,

      The Narita Express – also known as N’EX – is the most convenient Tokyo city transfer from and to Narita International Airport, which hosts most of the overseas flights to Japan. N’EX trains take approximately 1 hour to get from and to Tokyo Station (first stop city center), 1 hour and 15 minutes to Shibuya Station and around 1 hour and 20 minutes to Shinjuku Station. The service operates 27 trains daily, every 30 minutes. Therefore, it shouldn´t be any problem for you to catch the train to Osaka at 6 pm.

      According to your itinerary, the best option for you is to buy a 7 days Japan Rail Pass, since traveling on bullet train twice makes this pass worth and a good value for money.

      Hope this helps 🙂

  20. Hi, there!

    We are travelling to Japan this Octobe, for six 6 days . If we buy JR Pass, is there an airport bus transfer under JR Pass from Narita to Shinjuku? Second, if we just take NEX thru JR Pass to Shinjuku, is it a long walk from the train station to our Hotel which is Sun Members Tokyo Shinjuku? Also, can we use the JR Pass from Shinjuku to Shibuya? And, can we also use JR pass from Shinjuku to Kyoto and then back ? Lastly, when we travel back to airport from Shinjuku to Narita, can we still use the same pass, as long as it is within the 7 day period from its first used?

    Your reply would be very much appreciated.

    Thank you.

    Best Regards.

    Mariz

    1. Hello Mariz,

      Hope you are well.
      First, N’EX trains take approximately 1 hour to get from and to Tokyo Station (first stop city center), 1 hour and 15 minutes to Shibuya Station and around 1 hour and 20 minutes to Shinjuku Station.
      Second, the walk from Shinjuku station to your hotel is just 11 minutes away.
      Also, from Shinjuku to Shibuya you can use the japan rail pass using the Narita Express train again.
      From Kyoto to Shinjuku station you can use your Japan Rail Pass, but you will have one transfer in Tokyo. You will need to pass through the ordinary and shinkasen ticket gates entering at Kyoto, but at Shinagawa, pass back out the shinkasen gate to get to the Yamanote line (look for the green markings – platform and train). And the Yamanote line is covered by your pass. It is a circle line, and takes about 62 minutes for a round trip, but from Shinagawa the direction (as written on the signs) will be for Osaki, Shibuya and Shinjuku
      Last, yes, you will be able to use the same pass to go back to the airport, as long as it is within the 7 day period from its first used.

      Hope this helps you!

      Have a nice trip

  21. Hi there,
    How do you go to Hiroshima from Tokyo using the JR pass? How long is the travel time , because we only plan to go there for a one day trip and plan to go back to Tokyo on the same day.

    How about going to Kyoto on one day trip as well?
    Thanks

    1. Hi Cristina!

      You can use your JR Pass to take the Sanyo Shinkansen line’s Hikari bullet train from Tokyo Station to the Shin-Osaka Station. You will then transfer to the Sakura train (on the same line) and arrive in Hiroshima at Hiroshima Station. This trip takes approximately five hours to complete.

      Getting from Tokyo to Kyoto with the Japan Rail Pass is easy. You should take the Shinkansen Hikari train from either Tokyo Station or Shinagawa Station in central Tokyo, and arrive at Kyoto Station. A standard Tokyo to Kyoto trip with the JR Pass takes close to 1 hour and 40 minutes, taking the Hikari Shinkansen.

      Very happy travels!

  22. Hi there!
    I’ve already purchased JR passes for my family. I just wanted to know whether I should make a reservation in advance for the N’EX, or if I could reserve my seats at Narita Airport itself. It’s confusing, because I had read a rule that even if one is travelling on a JR Pass, he/she needs to collect their Reserved Seat Limited-Express Ticket before 9:00 p.m, on the day before departure.
    Secondly, I wanted to know where I could purchase the Tokyo Subway Passes, heard it’s really economical.

    Your response in this regard would be much appreciated.

    Best regards,
    Ramith

    1. Hi Ramith!

      All N’EX seat reservations are available for free to any Japan Rail Pass holder who can reserve a seat at any JR ticket office in Narita Airport, before boarding the train and without any additional payment. Please note that passengers with no seat reservations will not be allowed to board any of the N’EX trains.

      Have a nice trip!

  23. Hi, we are travelling to Japan for 10 days and will arrive at Narita Airport. We plan to travel from Narita airport to kyoto for 3 days, Osaka for 3 days and Tokyo for 4 days. We have plan to purchase a 7 days JR Pass, what would be the recommended activation for the JR Pass?Should we activate on the first day or when we are leaving kyoto? Thanks.

    1. Hi Jerlyn!

      All of the mentioned trips are covered by the Japan Rail Pass. However, you might want to make day trips from Kyoto, visit places nearby Osaka or see places in the Tokyo outskirts. Our best recommendation would be to define the whole itinerary and check which are the individual prices of each trip in Hyperdia and then compare it to the cost of the natoin-wide Japan Rail Pass. Depending on your itinerary even the 14-day Japan Rail Pass might be cost effective!

      In any case, all of the mentioned trips can be done using the Japan Rail Pass:

      – From Narita Airport you can take the Narita Express as detailed in this article.
      – To move between Kyoto, Osaka and Tokyo you can take either Hikari or Kodama trains in the Tokaido Shinkansen line.

      Happy travels!

    1. Hi Lim!

      Takayama is easy to access using your Japan Rail Pass. If traveling from Tokyo to Takayama, first take the JR Tokaido Shinkansen to Nagoya. Use the Hikari rather than Nozomi trains, as the Nozomi are not covered by the JR Pass. Alternatively, you may take the Hokuriku Shinkansen from Tokyo to Toyama. From either Nagoya or Toyama, take the JR Hida Limited Express to Takayama.

      Regarding the itinerary from Narita, should you be at the airport we would recomend you to take the Narita Express to central Tokyo and start your journey from there.

      Happy travels!

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