Good news for Japanese tourists and expats living in Japan as JAL freshens up airplanes, airport lounge and adds new flights
Due to competition from Thai Airways, the proliferation of low cost carriers plus a massive increase in Thai nationals travelling to Japan, Japan Airlines (JAL) recently announced they are doubling down on their Japan to Thailand services on the 60th anniversary of Tokyo - Bangkok route by the Japanese national carrier.
Morimoto with retrofit B777-200ER. Photo from Bangkok Post
JAL's manager for South East Asia Hitoshi Morimoto when interviewed by the Bangkok Post commented that the airline has committed to the upgrades to assure “... JAL become the full-service airline of choice for travel between Thailand and Japan. “
Currently JAL flies between Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok 5 times daily to Japan; once to Narita, twice to Haneda and one flight each to Nagoya and Osaka. JAL has set traffic goals between the two countries to 550 000 passengers this year, an increase in 50000 from 2015. This will definitely be helped by the addition of an extra daily flight on the Bangkok to Narita route during the high season of December to March.
It’s also worth noting that guests from Japan can fly directly to Koh Samui through code share programs with Bangkok Airways.
Fully flat seats with 17 inch TV and swivel seats
Big changes to retrofit the Boeing 777-200ER aircraft JAL uses include bigger and better seats, warm water TOTO Washlet toilets in business class, an upgraded MAGIC-VI touch screen inflight entertainment system, LED cabin lighting and the gradual roll out of inflight Internet.
The retrofit wide-body jets recent debut of its latest cabin interior was on the Bangkok-Haneda trunk line and was greeted with positive reviews from travel industry insiders.
JAL also has ambitious plans to renovate the Suvarnabhumi Airport Sakura Lounge to match similar high quality standards enjoyed by passengers at Haneda and Narita airports.
Though any loyalty lounge is a welcome oasis from the hustle and bustle of a major airport, the JAL's Sakura lounge at Suvarnabhumi is not nearly as opulent as other carrier’s provisions with one blogger noting, “Although not as nice as the Qantas and Cathay Pacific Lounges which both have much modern furnitures, I thought this lounge was still nice. I really loved the food selection on the buffet which caters most to Japanese guests.”
JAL's lounge at Suvarnabhumi is expected to be closed for renovations by the end of next month and will reopen around March next year.
Japan Airlines Sakura Lounge Bangkok is located in Concourse D on the 3rd floor near gates D1-8 and is open daily from 5:45 a.m. Access is granted to business and first class passengers on JAL and One World airline members; Emerald and Sapphire members
From Japanese language onboard entertainment to the availability of miso soup in the Sakura Lounge, IVL predicts the efforts made by the once bankrupt national carrier will surely offer offer splendid services and provide JAL with solid R.O.I.
IVL Property always welcomes guests from Japan and provides support in Japanese by Japanese staff members and Japanese speaking international staff. For the best the island has to offer you can count of IVL, experts on Koh Samui.
Though IVL is not a travel agent and therefore does not sell airline tickets we can take care of villa rentals plus in-villa services such as massage and catered meals as well as attractions and activities all around the island and surrounding waters.
Facts, figures and quotes in English and Japanese extracted from The Bangkok Post and various news sources listed below.