My Experience with Japan Airlines Business Class

After spending two months in Thailand, I took a flight in mid-June for Canada, departing from Bangkok. Unfortunately there’s no direct flight, so I chose a route operated by Japan Airlines with a connection in Tokyo, flying business class. Come explore the two flights with me via my photos!

Following a quick check-in at the business class counter and a security check (all through the “fast lane,” with priority access), I head back to the airline’s lounge. The atmosphere is somewhat restrained, but the sitting room is comfortable. In terms of the quality of the food, the Japanese classics are pretty decent. On the breakfast menu: miso soup, a bowl of rice, and some pickled vegetables!

It’s already time to head to my gate for departure (priority boarding, of course!). There’s a pleasant on-board greeting, and I go to my seat. It’s an extremely cozy Shell Flat Neo. I can comfortably settle into one of 3 positions: seated upright, seated in a “relaxed” position (perfect for reading or watching a movie), or lying down. This seat isn’t a flatbed (meaning it can’t be lowered to a full 180° angle) but rather a lie-flat seat, which can tilted down to a maximum of 172°. A flatbed would obviously be more comfortable for sleeping, but the difference isn’t too problematic (for me at least).

The seat’s control panel is highly intuitive, and with a few clicks can be configured according to our wishes. This comes with a 15-inch screen and a top-notch pair of noise-cancelling headphones. In terms of storage we’re of course quite spoiled, with several pockets to hold our magazines and other personal items.

Over the course of the two flights, I had a chance to test out the quality of the airline food with a lunch, dinner, and breakfast on board. For each meal I chose the Japanese set menu. (There’s a Western-style menu available, but I generally find that food is better when the products and recipes are perfectly mastered.) The meals were fairly high-quality and with generous portions, which is rare for in-flight service. As for the snack, it consisted of delicious French macarons, provided by the chocolatier Jean Paul Hévin (whom I talked about in this post)!

The bar menu

The meal menu

My first diner

My lunch

My second diner

During my layover in Tokyo, I took a moment to check out the Sakura Lounge, which was much cozier and more relaxing than the Bangkok lounge. Since our stopover only lasted 1.5 hours, we couldn’t take advantage of the services there; it was just a quick visit!

The Verdict

My two flights went off without a hitch and were perfectly on time, and thanks to the on-board comfort I arrived fresh-faced in Vancouver. The Japanese flight personnel were pleasant and professional, in line with their country’s standards. The greatest flaw in the experience occurred when I tried to reserve on the airline’s website, which I was unfortunately unable to pull off (a one-way trip leaving from Bangkok was apparently too complicated for the website to handle). I reserved instead through Expedia without any trouble.

Have you ever fly with JAL ? Feel free to send me your comments or questions by posting them on social media.

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  • Je n’ai pas encore eu la chance de voyage en business sur JAL mais la classe Eco est déjà bien au-dessus de la moyenne des autres compagnies, avec un service toujours au top ! La taille des siège fait rêver. La photo où l’on te voit dormir me fait juste pleurer d’envie quand je me revoit avec mon coussin gonflable autour du cou, la tête dans le hublot ^^ ! Tout comme les clichés des repas qui avaient l’air excellents (le lunch me rappelle les bentos des gares). J’étais déjà convaincu et cet article et rajoute une couche… un jour peut-être !

    • florence says:

      Merci pour ton commentaire Olivier !
      Pour moi qui n’arrive pas à dormir assise c’est vrai que pouvoir s’allonger comme cela c’est plutôt appréciable !! Et ça permet vraiment d’arriver plus “frais” ! Concernant les repas en effet cela m’a moi aussi fait penser aux bentos que tu peux trouver à emporter ! Et la diversité des mets et la qualité était plutôt pas mal !
      Bonne préparation de ton prochain voyage au pays du soleil levant, je ne manquerai pas de le suivre 😉

      • Merci ! J’ai hâte de partir maintenant, et si je peux te donner quelques idées de coins sympas pour tes futurs voyages, je serai ravi !

        • florence says:

          Ah c’est avec plaisir je suis toujours à la recherche de bons coins … surtout au Japon ou je risque de retourner 😉

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