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Guide to Flying the USA to Japan with All Nippon Airways

ANA Airlines Guide: Fly to Japan with All Nippon Airways

All Nippon Airways is a Japanese airline with major hubs in Tokyo Narita and Haneda Airport. It is the largest fleet operator of Japanese airlines and flies to more than 30 international destinations and 50 domestic cities. This article will serve as an ANA Airlines guide letting you know everything to expect for your flight.

Part of the Star Alliance Group and partnered with American Express, the airline offers numerous additional combined route options, plus ways to earn and spend travel miles, called ANA Mileage Points.

If you are considering which airline to fly for your next trip to Japan, note that ANA has continually won awards for service and comfort. It has spent years comfortably within the top ten of the prestigious Skytrax rewards and moved to the 4th spot in 2023.

This guide to ANA Airlines offers an overview of flying with ANA for comparison purposes. Covering the features of its 4 classes, routes offered, and mileage rewards program, you can understand if this popular carrier is the right option for you.

ANA Flights – Economy Class Seats

ANA is famous for its elevated first-class experience and is known as one of the best airlines to fly to Japan. However, economy class shouldn’t be dismissed. It offers passengers an enjoyable flight with wide seats and better-than-average legroom, good in-flight meal and drink service, and entertainment.

ANA airlines economy-class seats are one of the better options for flights to Japan

ANA Airlines offers a comfortable experience for the least expensive class of its airlines. While the average airline seat pitch (the distance between seat rows) has an average of 29-33 inches, ANA does a bit better with 34 inches, meaning more legroom compared to competitors.

Meals and service are deemed good. Expect a light snack before meals on international flights, drink service, and free meals. A variety of dishes are served with the meals, and portions are generous.

ANA serves special drinks on their flights free of charge. In addition to sodas, juice, and coffee, ANA offers its own brand of sake and soft drinks to all classes. It is also one of the few remaining airlines to provide free wine on long-haul flights to economy class seats.

If the meals and snacks handed out by the light attendants aren’t enough, passengers will find self-service snacks and drinks near the food preparation stations. Many passengers miss out on these snack and drink options, not knowing attendants provide refreshments throughout the flight.

Amenities in economy class won’t wow, but they do well enough for the price tag. ANA has various entertainment options, including shows and movies from Japan and Hollywood. Watch in-flight entertainment through a mounted screen or download the ANA app on your device. A pillow and blanket await economy flyers on each seat.

ANA, like other airlines, is in the process of upgrading its fleet. As the fleet upgrades through 2025 and beyond, economy-class flyers can expect better screens and charging stations usually found in premium economy and above. These newer Boeing 787 Dreamliner planes for long-haul routes have 4k 9-inch screens, outlets, and USB charging stations standard across all classes.

Economy flights on 777s may lack full charging options, or have older and smaller screens.

In addition to the 787, ANA commissioned an Airbus A380 jumbo airline route in August of 2023 from Narita International Airport to Honolulu. This double-decker plane seems to be falling out of favor due to a lack of fuel efficiency but features a 13-inch monitor instead of a 9-inch, ample charging options, and the largest economy cabin in the world.

ANA Flights – Premium Economy Seats

Book premium economy for extra legroom and additional amenities, larger screens, and lounge access.

Premium Economy Class Seats feature extra leg room and additional amenities

Premium-class seats extend the pitch by 4 inches to 38, 8 inches more than many other airlines. The space allows passengers to stretch their legs and easily access the aisle. A leg rest extends out for additional comfort.

For those who plan to watch movies and television, each of these seats comes with a 15.6-inch monitor, the largest of any premium economy class in the world.

From each headrest extends an adjustable reading light. Target your Kindle, iPad, or book with ease and keep the light focused on your person instead of flooding your neighbor with an overhead.

All premium economy seats come with charging ports and outlets.

In Honolulu, Haneda, Kansai, and Haneda airports premium economy passengers may make use of the lounges. These lounges are a perfect, quiet place to wait for connecting flights. They feature complimentary drinks, wi-fi, ANA entertainment, and reading app access.

ANA Airlines Business Class Seats and The Room

Business class is where ANA begins to shine. Economy and premium economy are on the upper end of average, but still behind the offerings of airlines such as JAL. However, what keeps ANA rating high and winning awards are the luxurious and near-unbeatable pricier cabin classes.

Fly business class with ANA on the Boeing 787 or experience "the room" on the 777.

The ANA business class seats on the 777s earned its own name, “The Room.” Sliding separators and fully reclinable, comfortable seats, delicious meals, and a large 24-inch monitor are enough to match other airlines’ first class.

As mentioned above, these famed compartments only come available with the Boeing 777. Newer 787 Dreamliners have a respectable, though downgraded, situation.

The 787 seats fully recline, have ample storage space, and of course direct aisle access. The screen size doesn’t impress, coming in at 18 inches. No sliders exist to enclose the passenger, so a business traveller may feel exposed.

Overall, the high service and comfortable, flat-lying seats continue to draw the crowds as one of the better trans-Atlantic business class options to Japan for both plane types.

If using ANA’s mileage program, pay with points! It takes 75000 miles to fly ANA round-trip to Japan. Amex points can be redeemed and turned into ANA miles. Keep in mind the point transfer takes about 48 hours.

Seats available for mileage points in business class are limited and competitive. Check early and often for deals.

ANA Airlines First-Class Seats and The Suite

All Nippon Airways took home the number 3 spot for first-class in 2023 thanks to the elevated offerings.

Fly ANA's "The Suite" for maximum first-class privacy and comfort

These luxurious room-like seats appeared to great acclaim in 2019. Named “The Suite,” they live up to the nomenclature. Those lucky enough to snag one of these pricey near-living spaces through miles, or who can afford the 23k round trip ticket, will hardly want to leave.

These seats have enough features to make you forget you are a thousand miles high and not in your personal TV room. Adjust your seat from upright to full flat and enjoy TV and games on your 42-inch screen. Control the entertainment system via a controller that looks like a hand-held gaming device. High-quality Sony headphones come with each compartment.

Plenty of outlets exist for your devices. Store luggage and personal items under the seat or in your personal closet.

Relax with a plush pillow, or blanket, and change into the complimentary pajamas or cardigan. Kick your shoes off and take advantage of relaxing in ANA’s slippers.

When you board, you’ll be presented with a personal and well-designed amenity kit featuring an eye mask, earplugs, and face creams. Combined with the complimentary pajamas you’ll sleep easy.

The staff greets the passengers as they board the exclusive first-class compartments, offering pre-flight drinks and lots of great food options, from caviar to fruit tarts. A flight attendant is also available to turn down your seat with a sheet if you’d like to sleep.

Some of the other features are a hidden compartment mirror, electric window blinds, and adjustable compartment separators. If traveling with a companion, you can lower the compartment slides and enjoy the flight together.

To fly “The Suite” you’ll need to book on the Airbus-A380 or Boeing 777. 787 Dreamliners top out with business class.

With ANA Airlines, the first-class lounge is available to those with a premier ticket. The ANA Lounge exists in three airports in Japan – Tokyo Haneda, Tokyo Narita, and Kansai – and Honolulu.

Direct Flights and Destinations From the USA

ANA Airlines flies to Narita international airport directly from 8 US cities

ANA Airlines offers the most direct routes to Tokyo and other cities in Japan from the USA.

The largest Japanese airline headquartered in Tokyo flies many of its direct North American routes daily. Catch a flight from Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, Washington D.C., New York, Chicago, Houston, and Honolulu.

Of these 8 origin locations, 7 offer more than one departing flight a day, and 6 fly to both Tokyo Haneda and Narita airports. In total, ANA operates 15 departing flight options direct to Tokyo daily.

If you have the option, you might be wondering which of Haneda International or Narita International Airport you should choose. Haneda is the clear winner for most tourists who plan to stay in Tokyo city. It is about twice as close to the city center (50 minutes versus 90 minutes) by public transportation or car and costs about half as much.

While the high-class service may draw passengers to ANA, be aware that some, if not many, of the routes to Japan are codeshare flights. Check your ticket to see if the flight is in fact operated by ANA or one of its Star Alliance partners, such as United Airlines.

In addition to USA routes, ANA also flies directly from other North American locations, including Mexico City and Vancouver.

Note: ANA stopped operating flights from San Jose in 2020. On its website, it claims the route is planned to open again. It’s unclear when direct flights to Haneda airport will resume.

Direct Flights from Europe

The largest Airline in Japan also offers flights from Europe. Daily routes include London to Haneda and Frankfurt to Haneda.

Other routes operated multiple times a week originate in Brussels, Munich, and Paris.

Domestic Flights

ANA routes cover the Japanese landscape. They fly to all major and many smaller cities. Many travelers spend a few days in Tokyo before heading to their next location.

Popular routes that ANA operates include Tokyo to Osaka Kansai, Sapporo, Fukuoka, Nagoya, and Okinawa. ANA also flies between many of these airports as well.

If you plan on traveling elsewhere from Tokyo or within Japan, definitely check out the Discover Japan Fare. ANA makes these discounted and limited tickets available strictly to international travelers. Book them starting from 355 days before your arrival in Japan.

The Discover Japan Fare program will run through March 29, 2025. However, all major airlines tend to update or cancel such discount fare offerings with little to no notice. Check often for your best chance to snag a great price on a domestic ticket.

ANA Mileage Club

Free to create an account and begin immediately earning points with ANA’s popular points program.

ANA Mileage Club is a great way to earn points through travel and shopping

The ANA Mileage Club allows you to earn points through ANA flights, Star Alliance bookings, shopping, hotels, and more. There are as many ways to spend them as there are to earn them.

Spend points with domestic and international flights, for baggage allowance, upgrades, and more.

The ANA Airlines first-class and business on the Boeing 777 aircraft has remained one of the most popular ways to fly in style for years and a favorite way to spend points. These fully enclosed, room-like spaces are highly coveted offerings that don’t happen every day – there are a limited number of available first and business options that can be purchased with points.

Given the hefty price tag, it’s no wonder that 90% of all passengers choose economy. To fly in business round trip from the US will cost about 75000 points on ANA Airlines, and more depending on the season. How to earn all those points?

Transferring American Express points to ANA Mileage Club proves to be a popular option. You can earn points with American Express cards anywhere and use the points for travel at your convenience. This option is only available for cards issued in the US.

ANA Mileage Club points are generally best used with ANA. Like other airline mile programs, use with partner programs through Star Alliance can come with limited options. For example, it is not possible to use points to upgrade cabins on a codeshare flight.

ANA discount subsidiaries for cheap flight tickets

ANA owns several low-cost subsidiaries that fly both domestic and international routes in Asia and beyond.

ANA Airlines owns several subsidiaries, including Peach, for low cost domestic and international tickets

One popular low-cost airline is Japan’s well-known Peach Airlines. Combined in 2018 with Vanilla Air, it currently runs routes originating in Japan’s major cities and landing in Korea, Taiwan, and Indonesia, to name a few. They have a total of 25 domestic and 12 international routes as of the time of writing.

You do get what you pay for. While Peach Airlines is popular, don’t expect the luxury service and well-thought-out meals you’ll find throughout ANA Airlines’ offerings.

If the flight ranks lower than your travel plans, and the price versus service works for you, Peach stands out as one of the better low-cost airlines in Asia.

Air Japan falls between full-service and low-cost

Air Japan is ANA’s newest addition to its collection of aviation companies. The airline will launch in 2024, and already the airline received quite a bit of press for the concept.

While ANA Airlines competes with the likes of JAL and Singapore Airlines through high service and comfort, and Peach competes via lowest cost, Air Japan seeks the middle ground.

Guaranteed by ANA to be of reasonable cost, the new airline will have a pitch slightly less generous than the ANA branch economy flights, 32 inches versus 34 inches. Also, entertainment will be available to stream, but there will not be any in-seat monitors.

The list of small changes that many passengers will likely find acceptable goes on. Only a couple of routes have been announced, none of them to or from the USA.

It will be interesting to see how this new airline is received.

Summary

Flying an ANA Airlines jet is a great choice for a comfortable and direct flight to and from the USA and Europe. This is especially true if you manage to snag a business or first-class experience using your miles.

We hope you found this guide helpful and are pumped for an ANA experience. Check out our write-up on other airlines to Japan, and leave us your thoughts about ANA Airlines below.

Happy travels.

Still deciding which airline you want to fly with? Be sure to check out our Japan Airlines guide as well.

Jonathan Mcnamara

Jonathan is a veteran of the Japan and Korean expat life. He lived in Japan and Korea for almost 10 years, and speaks Korean and Japanese. A blogger, a writer, website maker who's had his share of relationships while living abroad, he's now turned his attention to helping others navigate traveling, living, working, and relationships in Japan.

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