There are exchange offices in different airports all over Japan.
Once inside the JR office, you need to present your JR Pass Exchange Form and fill-up the other application form to claim your passbook. No need to line up for regular train tickets, just present the pass at the entrance/exit of the station.
How to use your Japan Rail Pass from JRPass.com on Vimeo.
For those who prefer not to get a JR Pass, you have the option to buy anytime but this will cost more.
JR Pass holders need to get/reserve their shinkansen seats through JR offices.
I love that Japan is slowly but surely opening up to the western culture. Believe it or not we didn't get lost this time around. Haha.
Inside the shinkansen on our way to Nagoya. It feels like we're inside an airbus plane but this one's more spacious. ;)
Don't lose your tickets! Guards check them once the train leaves the station. Nakakatuwa rin coz everytime lalabas at papasok yung mga guards lagi sila nag b-bow. ;)
Btw, the JR Pass is not valid for all trains like the Nozomi and Mizuho lines. This selfie was taken inside an N700 shinkansen that has a max speed of 270km/h.