Sunday, April 23, 2017

Sakura-ficing Miles - Japan Airlines First Class, Chicago-O'Hare > Tokyo-Narita (777-300ER)

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Japan Airlines rolled out a new first-class product on its Boeing 777-300ER aircraft in 2008, a considerable upgrade from its previous first-class product from its 747-400. And in January 2013, JAL began the rollout of its current first-class product (although the 2013 version is substantially similar to the 2008 version except for a new color scheme).

Current 777-300ER First Class ("Sky Suite")

Sakura-ficing Miles - Lounge report - American International First Class Lounge, Chicago-O'Hare

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I associate international flights with luxurious modern terminals and high-end boutiques offering designer handbags and luggage. Terminal 3 at Chicago-O'Hare couldn't be further from that image.

Terminal 3, Chicago-O'Hare

Terminal 3 is not remotely luxurious. Most flights that operate out of Terminal 3 are American Airlines mainline domestic flights, so the usual trappings of an international terminal aren't there. 

Three of American's oneworld partners (airberlin, Iberia, and Japan Airlines) also operate out of Terminal 3. The luckier oneworld airlines (British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Qatar Airways, and Royal Jordanian) operate out of Terminal 5, a newer international-only terminal.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Sakura-ficing Miles - Tokyo 2017: Introduction

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"In Japan, number one heart surgeon. Steady hand. One day, Yakuza boss need new heart. I do operation. But, mistake! Yakuza boss die! Yakuza very mad. I hide in fishing boat, come to America. No English, no food, no money. Darryl give me job. Now I have house, American car, and new woman. Darryl save life.

My big secret: I kill yakuza boss on purpose. I good surgeon. The best!"
   - Hidetoshi ("Hide") Hasagawa, The Office S6E21, Happy Hour"

Many airlines fly between the U.S. and Japan, so when I decided to head to Tokyo on vacation, I felt like a kid in a candy store. I've flown previously on ANA business class and Singapore Airlines Suites class (trip report) to Tokyo, but hadn't flown on Japan Airlines (JAL) since 1998.

With plenty of AAdvantage miles to spend (thanks to some generous Citi credit-card sign-up bonus offers in recent years), I thought this would be a good chance to try one of JAL's premium cabins.
The first class product is a semi-enclosed suite.

Japan Airlines First Class (777-300ER)
Source:  Japan Airlines