So far after some extensive research it seems that reserving the tickets on eki-net.com when the tickets goes on sale seems to be the surest way of securing my seats over the new year period. The different options can be found here. I'll be travelling from Atami station to Kyoto on the 29th and collecting my tickets ahead of time on the 24th in Narita. However I have some questions with regards to collection and payment of tickets.
- Since it seems that the credit card is charged only upon collection, can I supersede the payment with my JR pass on the day of collection? (possibly cancelling and reserving them using my JR pass, or having part of the fees waived?)
- If that is not possible, and payment have to be made on top of the JR pass, can a foreign credit card be used? (It seems to accept my card during account registration)
- Can the tickets be collected at Narita airport where the JR pass is being exchanged?
- Lastly, if I were to reserve the tickets on the 24th when I arrive using my JR pass, how likely will tickets still be available?