Sunday, May 31, 2009

Flight engineers will be obsolete in Japanese carriers

Apparently JAL is the only airlines in Japan that still operates flights that require an onboard flight engineer. However, it is planning to retire its last 747 Classic as early as this summer, which means it no longer needs any flight engineer anymore.

A year gone by without the crane

On May 31 2008, JAL operated its last flight with the Tsurumaru logo (aka the crane logo). This marks an end to almost half a century of the crane era and the completion of the JAL-JAS merger. If JAL were still using the crane logo, this coming August would have been its 50th anniversary. A year has passed since the complete phase out of the old markings and I still feel a little bit sad when I looked at the videos of the last crane flights below.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

This is exactly how a campaign shouldn't be run

I am no PR or advertising expert. But it's sad to see how the 50% bonus miles on LAX flights I posted a few days ago are being promoted on JAL North America website. The only link I have seen so far is on the JMB page below, which is not the most obvious link you can see. If you can't find it below, continue reading to find out where it is.

JAL North America website

Friday, May 29, 2009

JAL to fight desertification in Inner Mongolia

For the forth year, JAL will support the "Inner Mongolia Greening Project Against Desertification" organized by OISCA International through its "JAL Miles for Eco" mileage drive. Between June 1 2009 and July 31 2009, JMB members can donate their mileage in units of 10,000 miles. JAL will contribute 1 yen per mile donated by its members. JMB Japan members can make donations through the special website (link won't work until June 1) while members from other region has to contact their regional JMB call centers.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

JAL June menu is now available

JAL has updated its site to include the June meal menu selection for its international flights. Once again this is a Japanese only feature but if you look at the URL in the result page, it's not that hard to change the departure and arrival area to your airport codes. The hardest part is to translate the Japanese into your own language if you are flying Y or your flights are departing from area other than Japan. For business and first class passengers departing from Japan, pictures are included in the menu.

Japan Airlines In-flight meal menu search (Japanese only)

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Earn maximum triple miles with Hertz rental

JAL is running a promotion with Hertz. JMB members can earn triple miles for rentals booked through Hertz website and double miles if they book through Hertz hotline. Two consecutive days of rental is required to qualify for the campaign. Offer ends on March 31, 2010. Refer to JAL website for details.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

JAL 50% bonus mile campaign on LAX flights

To celebrate its 50th anniversary of servicing Los Angeles, JAL is offering a 50% bonus miles campaign for its American Region members. To qualify for the campaign, simply register for the campaign and fly on JL061/062 between May 29, 2009 and August 31, 2009 on fare eligible for mileage accumulation. For details, you can refer to the campaign page on JAL's website.

Russia's S7 joining Oneworld

Oneworld alliance announced today S7 will be their next new member under the sponsorship of British Airways. The first step will be adding its network to the Global Explorer fare offered by Oneworld beginning June 1 2009. The airline will officially join Oneworld some time in 2010 but the exact date is yet to be confirmed.

JAL form logistics alliance with Mitsui & Co. Ltd

JAL and Mitsui & Co., Ltd have met an agreement to form a logistics partnership in which each company will compliment each other with their respective strengths (air vs. sea). This will create a comprehensive and seamless one-stop solution to better meet customers' needs.

Monday, May 25, 2009

New allergy-free menu

Update: added links to sample meal pictures

JAL has developed a special allergy-free menu with Tsuji Inc. Starting May 27, passengers can call JAL reservation to reserve for the special allergy-free menu, however 96-hour advance notice is required. Looks like Y and J class will share the same menu (if google translates it right). You can refer to JAL's special in-flight meal page for details.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Japan ends onboard inspections on flights from North America

Japan has adopted a new policy to fight against the AH1N1 outbreak. They stopped doing onboard passengers inspections for flights from North America except when there is advance notice of passengers onboard are suffering fevers and have flu-like symptoms. This should reduce the chance of passengers missing their connecting flights (the inspection took 3 hours to complete when they first started due to lack of officers).

Source: NASDAQ

Enhancement of JAL Map Tokyo!

JAL has just enhanced the JAL Map Tokyo with the addition of Yokohama and improved detail for 5 areas nicluding Harajuku, Shibuya, Shijuku, etc. Tripadvisor reviews are also available on some of the hotels. You can try it out here.

Source: JAL

JAL moving to new terminal in Paris CDG

JAL will relocate from Terminal 2F to Terminal 2E at Charles de Gaulle (CDG) Airport in Paris from June 17, 2009. According to the press release, the latest facilities will provide great comfort and convenience to the passengers. Also, there will be a larger common lounge with business center, showers, and Wi-Fi connections. You can see map and pictures of the new check-in counters, gate, and common lounge here.

Source: JAL Press Release (Somehow the Japanese version provides more pictures once again LOL)

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Tokyo-Sapporo first class first anniversary celebration

JAL first introduced their first domestic first class back in Dec 1 2007. Then they rolled out the domestic F class to the HND-SPK route in June 2008. To celebrate the first anniversary, first class passengers flying the HND-SPK route in June 2009 will receive special gifts from JAL, which includes a not for sale JAL domestic first class pamphlet and some kind of Japanese food (noodles? sake? sorry I can't read Japanese. Feel free to let me know what they are in the comment section) depending on the direction your fly. If you fly on June 1 2009, you will also receive some kind of not for sale leather good. You can refer to their special 1st anniversary page for details.

Increase in JAL international passenger cancellation

With the recent H1N1 outbreak in Japan, airlines are seeing increase in international passenger cancellations and drop in forward booking (which is a more serious problem). Apparently ANA is seeing roughly 150 cancellations per day. Even though JAL hasn't released any figures, I wouldn't be surprised if they have more cancellations than ANA. After all they have a more extensive international network than ANA.

Source: Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Amazing JAL crosswind landing

This is an old video from 1998. Once in a while I would go to youtube to watch this video. You can see a JAL Cargo plane did a crosswind landing at the old HKG in the video. Honestly, I was kind of shocked the first time I saw this and thought the plane is going to crash LOL (but I knew it didn't because I would have heard of it).

Monday, May 18, 2009

Stalker alert on JL061 LOL

I came across this video on youtube last night. A passenger on JL061 recorded the cabin attendants working at the galley which looks kind of creepy. Not sure if he really got the approval from all of the CA like he said he did in the video description. Watching the video makes me miss flying on JAL even more.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

JAL to resume HND-HKG daily operation in June

JAL first announced the temporary frequency reduction of HND-HKG route between March and May back in Feb 28 2009. Despite the swine flu (yes I am still calling it by the old name LOL) which hit the Hong Kong tourist industry really hard, JAL is going to resume daily operation on this route according to the original plan (Hopefully this is a good sign). But they are going to re-time the flights a bit and move the departure time of both flights back by 15 minutes (Luckily they aren't changing the time until 2 days after my HND-HKG flight. I still have a chance to catch the last MTR train...fingers crossed)

Details can be found on JAL HK's website

JAL "eats" your luggage!

Ha! This is the flight I usually take when I do my LAX-NRT-HKG roundtrips. Even though the investigation is still ongoing, I believe JAL has nothing to do with this. The luggage got sucked into the engine (you can see that in the video) while the plane is being towed onto the taxiway. Basically the pilot had NO CONTROL over where the plane goes at that point. I believe It was the ground staff who made the mistake in this incident (either the one towing the plane or the one transporting the empty cart). Either way I am still giving them my business and have booked my coming flights with them. Hopefully my luggage won't get eaten LOL.