JAL from SYD to SFO - experiences? | Australian Frequent Flyer
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JAL from SYD to SFO - experiences?

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NickP

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May 24, 2005
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'Evening All

I'm off on my business travels again and this time I'm going on JAL. I've never used them before, so I'm in two minds. I'm pleased they're now in Oneworld and I'll benefit from points & credits etc. Will I get exactly the same amount of points / cabin bonus / status bonus [I'm QF platinum] and status credits for the trip? Its Sydney to Japan to SFO and then an internal flight on AA down to LA and then home the same route back to Sydney.

Can anyone tell me about their service / seat / entertainment / food etc. I'm going to be in business and I note there are two different seat types.

Really I'm just looking for any sort of confirmation that they're not at all bad and I wont feel too disappointed. The cost of the ticket is $4k cheaper than Qantas!

Cheers
Nick
 

JohnK

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Mar 22, 2005
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Evan is right. Flying in business class you will get the same SCs as QF but with the FF points you will get the 25% cabin bonus but you lose the 100% status bonus that you would have got as QF Platinum on QF, BA and AA flights.
 

dajop

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As pointed out, you won't get the 100% status bonus, but that will be made up somewhat by the longer routing via Japan. You would get 33,710 for return direct on QF SYD-LAX and 360 SC's.

On JAL via Japan, I estimate around 25,000 miles + between 580 and 680 SC's depending on what class you're booked in between SFO & LAX. (Bearing in mind extra SC's are worth 11 pts each due to the loyalty bonus, you're almost back up to the same no of points!)
 

NickP

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May 24, 2005
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65
Thanks guys for the notes.

I'm booked to travel in D class all the way there and back. The SC's are more important to me than the points at this stage, as I'm relocating to the UK early next year and wont be doing as much travel [as most of my current trips are to clients in the UK & US]. My anniversary of my QFF membership is end of may and I'm platinum till 2008.

So if I can qualify till 2009 with a couple of flights prior to going back, I'm going to be a happy camper.

Any of you used JAL / got comments on their service?

Cheers
 

simongr

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Jul 10, 2006
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Not sure if it will help but I am flying JFK-NRT-HKG in J in late July and will be posting a detailed trip report (if you can sort the englishman's sarcastic observations from the "facts" that is) - hope that might help :)
 

NickP

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May 24, 2005
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As a fellow Englishman, I'd have been delighted to read your report, if I'd not been travelling at the start of July!
Cheers
 
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Dee Thom

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Aug 2, 2006
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Hi Nick,
Have done the Brisbane/Narita trip with J.A.L. on many occassions, the girls are great, food (Japanese) good, but oh those old 747's they use from BNE.
Onward to LAX are later models, so should be comfortable.
Have a good flight
Dee
 

Evan

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Dec 26, 2006
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Yep, some old 747's in the fleet, all are being re-fitted in the next 18 months, due to be completed in 2008
JAL International Flights - Executive Class(In-flight Service)

They have some really strange funky almost 80's style interiors in some 747's, but i attached a view of the new seats in J.

On long haul from western countries they have some western food options but if you fly domestic or international to other Asian countries you get some really quiet nice Japanese food (and its traditional Japanese style)

I have also had good upgrades from JAL (Y -> J), i like them and will fly again.

E
 

NickP

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Joined
May 24, 2005
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One of my only problems is that I dont eat fish!

Another question...what is the lounge like in Syd? Can I use the Qantas First lounge, as a WP member?
 

simongr

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Jul 10, 2006
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As a OWE you can use any OW lounge when flying OW - so yes you can use the SYD F lounge. Also as a QF WP you have any time access to any Qantas lounge (hmm maybe that's qantas club) irrespective of class of travel and airline flown.
 

drron

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Jul 4, 2002
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I fly JAL regularly BNE-JFK and always booked in D as it is much cheaper than the alternatives though at present AA have a special business fare from aust. to USA at about $500 more than the JAL fare and you have to route via NRT.
From australia JAL has the regional business seats.OK for the daytime flight to NRT but not as good on the overnighter back from NRT.Service is usually good,occasionally a little reserved usually because the FA is not confident with their english.I enjoy the food and have the Japanese menu.The western option has always had a beef selection as well as fish.The wine selection is reasonable.
From NRT to the states all flights have the shell seat-not quite flat.I prefer this to the QF seat but others prefer the QF offering.Service is usually excellent on this sector with a greater choice on the menu as well as a greater selection of snacks between meals.
Yes you will not get the status bonus on JAL.THE mileage is a little less than quoted as BNE-NRT-JFK is just over 11000 miles.That number has appeared in my aa account 18 times now so must be correct.
 

ditto

Junior Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2005
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19
Hi Nick
We fly at the other pointy end of the plane but if our experience with JL - SYD TYO LHR TYO SYD in Y is anything to go by I can only imagine you will have a fantastic trip on all levels.

Flight attendants without attitude and genuinely pleasant, exceptional service, great food, good wine (french I think) and always, always, a flight attendant walking through the cabin with juice, water, tea.
The free overnight in Narita was an added bonus and we were able to check our baggage and get boarding passes at their service desk in the hotel.

Another thing that we appreciated, both being nervous flyers, was that when we had horrendous turbulence on our first and fourth sectors, both Captains made announcements before we hit the turbulence, so we were a little more prepared. A bit spooky but I also loved the visuals from the camera at the front of the plane that relays the actual take off and landing.

My partner is vegequarian (eats fish) and we are used to eating seperately, sometimes up to half an hour apart.

When we boarded the plane and were seated, a flight attendant approached Kat and confirmed that she was vegetarian and a small sticker was placed on the top of her seat. When the meal service reached us I was given the carnivore choice and Kat was given her vegetarian meal. This is the first time on any airline in any part of the world that we have eaten a meal at the same time. Kat rates the JL vege meal as the second best she has had (Virgin Atlantic wins) but she would have been happy to have the Japanese meal. This happened on all four flight sectors. It's not rocket science and I do not understand why other airlines cannot get it together to do the same.

In contrast, on the first sector SYD LAX of our last QF SYD JFK SYD trip Kat got breakfast for dinner and dinner for breakfast and the crew couldn't have cared less. On the JFK LAX sector she got the same dinner she just had for breakfast.

I have flown on all the major airlines and although it is some time since I have flown SG it still rates as the best I have experienced but JL would be a very close second. We also love VS, great attitude and great fun.

Have a great trip.
 

drron

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Jul 4, 2002
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NickP said:
Great feedback, thanks mate. What's in in flight entertainment like?
There is a reasonable choice of recent release movies plus a couple of classics-I think 8 all up.SYD-NRT will be of the continuos running type but NRT-SFO is on demand.Only once in 36 segments with JL did the entertainment system malfunction and even then it was out of action for less than 1 hour and the purser came through the cabin apologising profusely to everyone individualy.
I can understand people liking the experience on Virgin atlantic better as the service on JAL is professional and not obviously friendly but that is the Japanese way.Occasionally though you will get that friendly touch usually when they have an FA or two that is not Japanese and I have met FAs from Hong Kong,Singapore,Taiwan,USA and even an Aussie.The whole crew usually joins in the conversations in that situation.
 
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