Review of Japan Airlines flight Helsinki Tokyo in Economy

Airline Japan Airlines
Flight JL414
Class Economy
Seat 55K
Aircraft Boeing 787-9
Flight time 08:40
Take-off 13 Mar 18, 18:00
Arrival at 14 Mar 18, 09:40
JL   #11 out of 123 Airlines A minimum of 20 Flight-Reports is required in order to appear in the rankings. 124 reviews
TheWindowSeat
Published on 2nd April 2018
photo jl414



After the truly awful Customer Relations from TK ( see TK1995 report of March 2017 ) after 8 flights in which I blogged and promoted the inflight service, I really couldn't be bothered considering Turkish Airlines for my first ever trip to Japan even though they had very very cheap Manchester-Hong Kong fares from where I could connect easily and cheaply to Tokyo Narita.

I even considered PIA as I have heard that the fares and service are excellent but couldn't seem to get a fare. Turkish Airlines has a strange stance towards me in that apparently photography onboard is banned however other passengers frequently post photos of cabin interiors,meals and even photos of the crew ( something I never do ). So quite why they choose to be so awkward will be to their detriment as I continue to fly other airlines and avoid TK.

As there are no nonstop services between Manchester and Tokyo, I had to consider price,flying time,transit time and how to get the most out of my holiday and to fly with an airline that would really pamper me. Japan is hosting the Rugby World Cup in 2019 and the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games. I would hope that JAL commence Manchester service soon for these events and beyond.

My first choice was Cathay Pacific who happened to be doing a Spring Sale in April 2017.

The great fare however was overshadowed by an almost 12 hour flight to Hong Kong,7 hours transit at HKG then a 4 hour flight to Tokyo. Much as I love nothing more than flying, even I have my limits and need rest between flights !

I decided that I wanted a 100% authentic Japanese flying experience for my first trip to the land of the Rising Sun. And only 1 airline could help start this dream holiday - JAL also known as Japan Airlines !


Classic adverts of JAL which show what I mean about Japanese authenticity

photo _3 3-1
.
photo s-l1600

I could not book on the JAL website as it didn't seem to let me return after the 18th March 2018 and I wanted to return a few days later than the 18th March.

This remained the same right up to me actually making my booking at the end of April 2017. My failed attempts to book with JAL were heigtened when I saw that a Manchester-Brussels/Dusseldorf-Haneda Lufthansa/Brussels Airlines and All Nippon combination ) return trip would cost close to GBP1000.00.


After further research, on the Finnair website I had an option to fly as follows and for an amazingly low price ;

MANHEL AY
HELNRT JL
NRTHEL AY
HELMAN AY

However, the thought of sitting on a window seat on a Finnair A350 where there are 3 seats by the window did not appeal one bit.

So for the same price and after finding out about the amazing Economy Class configuration on JAL's 787-900s I settled on ;

MANHEL AY
HELNRT JL
NRTHEL JL
HELMAN AY

With this itinerary, I would fly my Tokyo segments exclusively on JAL- Japan Airlines,an airline I have long had an ambition to fly with and the flights would be on their hi-tech 787 aircrafts with Sky Wider II Economy Cabins ! JAL began Helsinki flights on the 787 in March 2013. Sky Wider II seating is exclusive to JAL's 787s and is in a 2-3-2 configuration instead of most airlines 3-3-3 configuration and believe me, for a tall and built person, it made me feel very good that my longhaul flights would see me enjoy increased comfort and decent legroom to/from Tokyo Narita.
photo pic_seat_skywider2_01

After finding a great deal prices dropped to GBP100.00 lower eventually to GBP450.00 return from Heathrow to Haneda on JAL or Manchester-Narita with Finnair !

photo 20170902_141737-1


Jalsinki

JAL began Helsinki service in 2013 to cater to the growing number of Japanese tourists visiting Finland. I guess the Japanese can feel at home on their national flag carrier and similarly flying Finns to experience Japan a lot sooner when departing Helsinki on JAL!

Articles on the Helsinki launch in 2012

https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2013/07/02/business/jal-narita-helsinki-flights-start-using-787s/#.WnR8yfn5eUk

http://press.jal.co.jp/en/release/201202/003430.html

http://www.anna.aero/2013/07/03/japan-airlines-inaugurates-flights-on-its-fifth-european-route/

My JAL PNR FU**X7 and the PNR from Finnair PNR NT**FK both contained the letters fu and fk (perhaps a subliminal message that I should visit Fukuoka in Japan ?! )

The first Tokyo Narita - Helsinki flight being waved off in 2012
photo 1st helsinki


Japanchester and Japanese Business in the UK!

There are multiple Japanese Companies in the Manchester area with Marubeni Komatsu,Fujitsu,Mitsubishi,Konica Minolta,Hitachi and soon Uniqlo.

Hoshizaki , Honda and Toyota some of the more famous ones. Surely it can only be a matter of time before a Manchester-Tokyo service commences ?
In the past there were strong possibilities of ANA – All Nippon Airways launching a Tokyo-Manchester-Dublin route but this never materialised.

His Excellency Mr Koji Tsuruoka, Japan’s Ambassador to the UK, visited Manchester in February 2017

The visit from Mr Koji Tsuruoka aimed to celebrate the region’s relationship with Japan, whilst showcasing Greater Manchester as an investment and business destination for Japanese investors, especially in the areas of science, innovation, infrastructure and transport.

Article about the UK Japanese Ambassador's visit to Manchester
http://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/business/business-news/japanese-ambassador-visits-manchester-discuss-12633280

photo fse


To get a feel for Japan, in May 2017 I paid a visit to Tokyo Season Restaurant in Manchester ; the gentleman who greeted me was so friendly and dressed in traditional Yukata !

photo 20170515_140754
.
photo 20170515_141125
.
photo 20170515_141210


and Samsi not far away which is a restaurant upstairs and has a cute Japanese supermarket downstairs !

photo 20170518_125634
.
photo 20170518_125848



In May 2017, there was a Cherry Blossom in my neighbourhood in Manchester !

photo 20170516_205647
.
photo 20170516_205747
.
photo 20170516_205757


Japandorf



Dusseldorf-Tokyo was briefly served by Lufthansa before All Nippon Airways began regular service from Dusseldorf to Tokyo Narita.
10,000+ Japanese live in North Rhine Westphalia, and among them 6,500 in Düsseldorf alone meaning the service was bound to be very successful. Had the fare been cheaper than it was, I may have flown Manchester-Dusseldorf-Haneda.


The Reservation



Here is my booking as viewed in JAL European Reservations Centre and also how any airline booking looks to airline staff. So much for oneworld airlines all "working as one" when you see the message MARKETED BY AY **DONT TOUCH**

Legend

V or S after the flight number - Fare level also known as booking class or V class, S class etc
SSR - Special Service Request
MOML - Muslim Meal
HK1 - 1 passenger confirmed

FU**** is the PNR or booking reference ( starred out for privacy but that is where it appears on a reservation )

Names are always written as surname/firstname and title

T FU**** C/28APR17 U/01MAY17
1. 1SEAT/THEWINDOW MR
TYPE- 1. 1V694198/AY
1 AY1362V 13MAR MANHEL HK1 1015 1505
2 JL414 V 13MAR HELNRT HK1 1725 1010+1
MARKETED BY AY **DONT TOUCH**
3 JL413 S 22MAR NRTHEL HK1 1130 1500
MARKETED BY AY **DONT TOUCH**
4 AY1365S 22MAR HELMAN HK1 1600 1700
TKT- CE********* ELECTRONIC TICKET EXIST (CHECK *TE) *********
1.SSR MOML JL HK1 JL414Y13MAR 1SEAT/THEWINDOW MR
2.SSR MOML JL HK1 JL413Y22MAR 1SEAT/THEWINDOW MR
3*SSR SEAT JL HK1 JL414Y13MAR 1SEAT/THEWINDOW MR SEAT 48A
4*SSR SEAT JL HK1 JL413Y22MAR 1SEAT/THEWINDOW MR SEAT 48A



I called Japan Airlines London 3 times after making my booking for various queries and I am delighted to say that Monica,Margaret and Mano were all extremely friendly,professional and really made me feel I had made the right choice to fly JAL ( albeit via Finnair). I asked if they had any memorabilia to post me and they advised to call the next day as the office was shut the day I called ( a UK Bank Holiday ).Some ex Senior ( but not older ) JAL Cabin Crew members are now office based in London.

It must have been around 18 years since I last picked up the phone to contact an airline for memorabilia and information. The digital age has meant that most customer's are happy to view all they want to online. I am very old school and the feeling of a brochure/timetable in my hands still excites me !

However, I didn't get as far as having to phone as, Ms Kaishini from JAL London emailed to say they were putting together some information to post me .

photo 20180329_001641


In December 2017 I got a shock during a random check of my JAL seat assignments when I saw that I had been unassigned on both my flights from/to Helsinki.
I immediately contacted Finnair who changed me ( at my request to 56A). A few weeks later I was watchign a JAL 787-9 video and was further dismayed to see that 56A is a non window seat. However I really should have consulted the below link as it clearly states non window seats. I wish all airlines would provide this information.
Again Finnair changed my seat,this time to 55A. So far I have been assigned 48A,56A and 55A !

https://www.jal.co.jp/en/aircraft/conf/789.html


TheWindowSeat Connections with Japan



In 1990 when flying from Heathrow to/from Pakistan, PIA for some reason, had some Japanese Airhostesses on each flight. That would be my first introduction to the Japanese people. Said Airhostesses were very kind and caring by the way. It was nice to see them wearing PIA's uniform of the time.

When I went to school in Holland in the 90's I had contacted JAL Amsterdam a few times for information and they always sent me lovely packages including,on one occassion, a book called This is JAL, an A-Z of JAL and a beautiful brochure of the world of JAL. There was even an article on JAL's Heathrow based Cabin Crew. On mvoing back to the UK, I lent the brochure to an absent minded friend who lost it. Or so I am told.

Anyway,over 2 decades later, a Dutch bookseller had one for sale so I bought it. Nice to be reunited with THIS IS JAL !

This is JAL …and this is a copy I managed to buy online - with the original I did a presentation on the 747 on Technical Studies at High School in 1994.

.
photo pic
.
photo 20180329_001748


Talking of my time in Holland, Clingendael in The Hague, has a beautiful Japanese Garden reached by bus 18.
photo clingen


The Japanese Garden was built in the early 20th century by the then owner of the Clingendael estate , Marguerite Baroness of Brienen also known as Lady Daisy.
It is the only Japanese Garden in the Netherlands and therefore has a high historical value. I wish such a garden existed in Manchester or at least in the United Kingdom.

Throughout her lifetime, Lady Daisy made many trips to Japan and would bring back bridges, lanterns, plants and a water basin to use for her garden. The garden is historically significant simply because it is the only Japanese Garden from that time period in the Netherlands. The garden features a range of sculptures, lanterns, mosses, a turtle island and a stone setting shaped like a crane. Both the crane and the turtle are symbols of long life. The garden’s pavilion makes for an excellent viewing point and was designed to be a place of contemplation.

In 2002 I had an interview with ANA All Nippon Airways in London as a Cabin Attendant ( their term , personally I say Cabin Crew). I waited two weeks and only after phoning ANA was I told I hadn't been successful.

In my last airline job in Manchester in 2012, I had many Japanese colleagues and would often start the day with " Ohayu Gozaimas" ! ( Good Morning in Japanese).
Contacts with JAL Amsterdam and JAL London were also further great experiences with polite,professional people.
Other than that, I have never really had any contact with the Japanese and my JAL flight would be my first real taste of the Japanese people and certainly my first experience of Japanese hospitality and care.


About Japan Airlines

Japan Airlines (JAL) was founded in 1951 and became the first international airline in Japan. A member of the oneworld® alliance, the airline now reaches more than 344 airports in 56 countries and regions together with its codeshare partners with a modern fleet of more than 227 aircraft. JAL Mileage Bank (JMB), the airline's loyalty programme, has reached over 30 million members worldwide. Awarded one of the most punctual major international airlines, JAL is committed to providing customers with the highest levels of flight safety and supreme quality in every aspect of its service, and aims to become the most preferred airline in the world.
Japan Airlines, once the largest operator of Boeing 747s, retired its last jumbo jets as it restructures operations in bankruptcy protection.
The final two 747-400s touched down at Tokyo's Narita airport in March 2011,after flights from Honolulu and the Japanese city of Okinawa,carrying 679 passengers between them.
JAL ended more than four decades of 747 operations as it focuses on smaller aircraft such as 767s and 787 Dreamliners to manage operating costs.
The carrier has owned a total of 112 747s beginning with a 747-100 that was delivered in 1970. The total included 44 x 747-400s. The airline was able to carry 568 passengers on 747-400s configured for domestic routes. So the term "Superjumbo" was already in operation via JAL way before the A380 took to the skies in 2007 !

It would be most unfair not to mention or show off the JAL 747-400 known as Skycruisers in the livery of when I first fell in love with JAL
photo japan_airlines_boeing_747-400_syd_gilbert



The JAL Livery



The JAL livery is called the tsurumaru or "crane circle." It is an image of a Japanese red crown crane with its wings extended in full flight. The Tsurumaru JAL logo was created in 1958 by Jerry Huff, the creative director at Botsford, Constantine and Gardner of San Francisco, which had been the advertising agency for Japan Airlines from its earliest days.

In the creation of the logo, Huff was inspired by the personal crests of Samurai families.

On his choice of the crane, he writes: "I had faith that it was the perfect symbol for Japan Air Lines. I found that the Crane myth was all positive—it mates for life (loyalty), and flies high for miles without tiring (strength.)"

The tsurumaru livery was in use until 2002, when it was replaced by a livery called the "Arc of the Sun." The livery featured the motif of a rising sun on a creamy colored background.[102]

Following its corporate restructuring, Japan Airlines returned to the classic tsurumaru logo starting on 1st April 2011. Looking at a JAL aircraft,one can imagine it is greatly inspired by a large Japanese flag as the entire fuselage and tail is white with a red Crane logo on the tail which is in circular style as the red circle on the Japanese flag. The below image shows the same titles on all liveries although some were actually different whilst they were in operation.

photo 00013978


A new Virtual way to fly in Japan ! Japan introduces Virtual Reality trips without ever leaving the ground…why do more countries not do this ?!
photo 2018-02-15t031203z_70019396_rc1954e761d0_rtrmadp_3_japan-restaurant-firstclass

https://www.thenational.ae/lifestyle/travel/flight-to-nowhere-japan-airline-introduces-vr-trips-without-ever-leaving-the-ground-1.704963#4


Some interesting facts about JAL and Japan



OAG I rated JAL top for punctuality in 2017

The Omotenashi hospitality concept is unique to JAL and strngly embodies Japanese traditional hospitality
https://www.google.co.uk/amp/s/en.rocketnews24.com/2015/04/01/narita-airport-attempts-to-woo-international-travellers-with-omotenashi-welcome-program/amp/

The UK Post Office rated the top Longhaul destination as Japan ( top shorthaul Bulgaria )
https://www.businesstraveller.com/business-travel/2018/02/12/tokyo-narita-tops-ranking-best-airport-food/

JAL is set to launch a budget airline with the aim of offering medium- and long haul international flights by 2020, when Tokyo is set to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

JAL will also consider providing the first low cost flights between Japan and Europe, as well as Japan and the US.
The envisioned users are both Japanese outbound travelers and foreign visitors to Japan.

JAL's handy guide showing where to sit to view Mount Fuji when flying JAL
https://www.jal.co.jp/en/dom/mt_fuji/?m=df

JAL Vision
photo screenshot_2017-05-01-11-32-26-1

Brand new Amenity Kits
photo jal-business-class-amenity-kit-by-tatsumura-e1519401553752

https://www.businesstraveller.com/business-travel/2018/02/24/japan-airlines-launches-new-business-first-class-amenity-kits/

A week before I flew came this news that a Japanese volcano had erupted and dozens of flights had been grounded

https://www.popularmechanics.com/science/environment/a19131519/japanese-volcano-erupts-dozens-of-flights-grounded/

Preparing for Japan
photo 20180329_002327

My Japanese Inspiration Collection - including a crane made in 2009 for me by a colleague's son who I had gifted some brochures about Japan !
photo 20180329_001416

Japanese business cards of the Manchester area
photo 20180329_002541

JAL Mileage bank card and pack - an actual card !

photo w1024
.
photo 20180329_002927

JAL Samurai Blue 777 !

"SAMURAI BLUE 2018" Japan's Soccer World Cup Team. Photo by S Araki.
photo saraki

The Art of J advert !
photo j

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zve-FRywjQM


And after that mini education about JAL and Japan it is time to board JL414 to Tokyo Narita,my first ever JAL flight !

A funny story before the review begins. I had arrived off AY1362 from Manchester and had been bussed to a bus waiting which had happened to be the very area I would get another bus to my JL414 aircraft. As I entered the waiting area I saw the Cabin Crew of JL414 walking into their seating area ahead of being bussed to our aircraft. I was so excited to see them that I made the bold move to go over and introduced myself to the Chief Purser.

I advised her I was flying JAL for the first time and I was a very long time fan of JAL. The Assistant Purser also came over whilst all the other female crew were sat nearby and smiling at me ! As I am talking to the 2 Pursers, I dropped a document wallet and everything went flying out ! Before I could even feel embarrassed the entire crew was laughing in a very cute way ! I told the Chief Purser my seat number and that I had a Muslim Meal ( MOML ) booked. I handed over a meal voucher I had printed and advised I looked forward to my flight.

photo 20180313_160443
.
photo 20180313_160838-1


JAL has a very strict Boarding Sequence which is shown online and on a board at the gate area ;

photo 20180313_160946
.
photo 20180313_162527
.
photo 20180313_162529
.
photo 20180313_164357
.
photo 20180313_164812


JL414 Fast Facts



Registration JA864J
787-900
13Mar18
HELNRT
Previous Narita-Helsinki
Next Jakarta then Frankfurt
Boarding started 1640pm for priorities

Boarding



We were then bussed to the waiting aircraft. I was overjoyed when I saw the first sight of my 787 Dreamliner which would fly me to Tokyo Narita !

photo 20180313_170026
.
photo 20180313_170119
.
photo 20180313_170219
.
photo 20180313_170231
.
photo 20180313_170249
.
photo 20180313_170313
.
photo 20180313_170511
.
photo 20180313_170515
.
photo 20180313_171159


I was onboard at exactly 1700pm and said an enthusiastic Konichiwa to Purser I had met earlier !

Onboard 2 Airhostesses ( 1 was the Economy Purser ) said Konichiwa to me !

The Boarding theme tune "I will be there with you" was playing throughout the cabin and sounded lovely.

The configuration of the Economy cabin is 2 x 4 x 2 as opposed to 3 x 4 x 3 on other airlines. This means couples and two people travelling together can take advantage of no third person alongside them.
I had chosen the right side of the aircraft to get a view of Mount Fuji before landing,having viewed youtube videos which shows that the Mountain can be viewed on the right from Helsinki to Tokyo Narita.

Although Japan Airlines have a handy online guide for the correct seat albeit on domestic flights !

https://www.jal.co.jp/en/dom/mt_fuji/?m=df

I stowed my handluggage above my seat and asked my seatmate if I could take my seat and he politely obliged.

Once I had been seated for a few minutes I advised my seatmate that I will move after take off as spare seats in the middle rows with 4 seats were available.
photo 20180313_172100


An Airhostess came by to check I had a MOML booked and said she will serve me the meal after take off.

A few moments later the landing cards,discount vouchers and cute little competition entry with a JAL picture were distributed.


photo 20180313_171425
.
photo 20180313_171442
.
photo 20180313_185740
.
photo 20180313_193629


There was a Welcome PA and that JL414 was a codeshare flight with Finnair and BA
Flight time was announced as 8 hours 40 mins time after take off
photo 20180313_172716
.
photo 20180313_172720
.
photo 20180313_172805
.
photo 20180313_172848
.
photo 20180313_172917
.
photo 20180313_173035
.
photo 20180313_173651
.
photo 20180313_174149


The Dreamliner's window "shades" !

photo 20180313_174245
.
photo 20180313_174328
.
photo 20180313_174336


At 1735pm the doors closed and the safety video played

photo 20180313_174630
.
photo 20180313_174632
.
photo 20180313_174635
.
photo 20180313_174640
.
photo 20180313_174643
.
photo 20180313_174648
.
photo 20180313_174653
.
photo 20180313_175056
.
photo 20180313_175253


At 1740pm there was an apology for the delay as we had been waiting for connecting passengers - as these "connecting" passengers boarded I noted some had actually been sat in the lounge with me ??
Pushback was at 1744pm and the engines started at 1745pm

photo 20180313_175056
.
photo 20180313_175253
.
photo 20180313_175313
.
photo 20180313_175316
.
photo 20180313_175330
.
photo 20180313_175637
.
photo 20180313_175735
.
photo 20180313_175833
.
photo 20180313_175849
.
photo 20180313_175940

Take Off



A Norwegian 737-800 " rewarding more than 6,000 members" was ahead of us to take off. You can just about see it.

photo 20180313_180113

Seen here with Irish registration at Dublin as it was impossible to get a good shot with all the rain in Helsinki !

photo 39436412141_ebd3ea5761_b


At 1800pm my Japanese Dream began as we began a heavy rotation down the runway preceeded by the cute announcement that we are ready for take and thank you for waiting - please ensure seatbelt fastened climbed into the light and pleasant evening sky !

photo 20180313_180536
.
photo 20180313_180618
.
photo 20180313_180655
.
photo 20180313_180703
.
photo 20180313_180817
.
photo 20180313_180857
.
photo 20180313_180932
.
photo 20180313_181039
.
photo 20180313_181108
.
photo 20180313_181118
.
photo 20180313_181239


As promised to my seatmate when I boarded I decided to let him have more space and also enjoy some extra space myself by changing to 55G, the aisle seat in a row of 4 in the middle. A look at the seat and seat contents. The cushion also acts as a neck pillow. I love the headrest cover, blanket and pillow design all being co-ordinated with the checked design. Please note this flight was an overnight flight and shortly after take off it became very dark outside. Even with the flash a few pictures came out darkish. With a soon to be upgraded Mobile Phone, hopefully my imaged will become very crystal clear and show Cabin Interiors at their very finest and classiest !

photo 20180313_181420

Power Ports for every seat - Premium Economy disguised as Economy Class !
photo 20180313_181519
.
photo 20180313_181524
.
photo 20180313_181855
.
photo 20180313_181903

Seatpocket Contents
photo 20180313_181921
.
photo 20180313_182006
.
photo 20180313_182022
.
photo 20180313_182052
.
photo 20180313_182216
.
photo 20180313_182553

The JAL CEO is saying Sayonara in his foreword….
photo 20180313_182640
.
photo 20180313_182704
.
photo 20180313_182721
.
photo 20180313_182735
.
photo 20180313_182750
.
photo 20180313_182753
.
photo 20180313_182856
.
photo 20180313_182909


I would rather that the Drinks Menu was in fact a full Menucard !

photo 20180313_182931
.
photo 20180313_182937
.
photo 20180313_183049
.
photo 20180313_183100
.
photo 20180313_183514
.
photo 20180313_183516
.
photo 20180313_183616
.
photo 20180313_183657


Inflight Service



A scented oshibori was served
photo 20180313_182317

I was really looking forward to my meal, as, unlike costcutter Emirates, JAL has a huge meal tray full of treats and culinary surprises !

Skytime Kiwi Juice and Crackers were served before the meal

photo 20180313_184902
.
photo 20180313_185200


Cute inscription on the Cracker Mix packet as well as a lovely but simple illustration of Mount Fuji….

photo 20180313_214656
.
photo 20180313_214718


And the moment I had been waiting for…..meal time…..Muslim Meal time !

photo 20180313_190714
.
photo 20180313_190921

Salt and Pepper isn't included with the cutlery pack ( like on Thai Airways ) but is available upon request
photo 20180313_191544

Chopsticks in JAL branded packaging !
photo 20180313_191605

Real Metal Cutlery with the stylish JAL logo
photo 20180313_191639
.
photo 20180313_194556
.
photo 20180313_194720


I was brought my meal before the main meal service even started ! I am a proud Muslim and always have been and love to show the best of my Faith in my everyday life both with family and friends as well as colleagues and acquaintances. I found it a bit strange that a green MOML ( Muslim Meal ) sticker was applied just behind my headrest,highlighting my religion.

To the other passengers,the Cabin Crew were displaying a laminated colour picture card showing the main meal choice ( pork or chicken pasta )

JAL's Halal Meal Standards
photo screenshot_2017-04-29-17-25-16-1

I loved the big beverage cups almost the size of a 330ml can !

Ice Cream isn't offered with a special meal but I asked for one anyway as I know Haagen Dazs doesn't have alcohol or animal fats !

There was then an announcement for Sky Oasis and requested that passengers "do stop by" and that there is no restroom in the rear.
photo 20180313_212636photo 20180313_212845
.
photo 20180313_212915
.
photo 20180313_214634
.
photo 20180313_214645


Inflight Entertainment



I listened to Louise "Lets go round again"and the headset clarity was like I was in a dancehall !
I had to listen to JPop so tried Candy Pop's "Twice""

photo 20180313_183802
.
photo 20180313_183816
.
photo 20180313_183824
.
photo 20180313_183846
.
photo 20180313_183906
.
photo 20180313_183928
.
photo 20180313_183950
.
photo 20180313_184028
.
photo 20180313_184055
.
photo 20180313_184126
.
photo 20180313_184138
.
photo 20180313_184205
.
photo 20180313_184219
.
photo 20180313_184224
.
photo 20180313_184301
.
photo 20180313_184311
.
photo 20180313_184337
.
photo 20180313_184438
.
photo 20180313_184459
.
photo 20180313_184513
.
photo 20180313_184517
.
photo 20180313_184549
.
photo 20180313_184556
.
photo 20180313_184601
.
photo 20180313_195012
.
photo 20180313_195620
.
photo 20180313_210329
.
photo 20180313_210427
.
photo 20180313_210435
.
photo 20180313_210459
.
photo 20180313_210502
.
photo 20180313_210516
.
photo 20180313_210525
.
photo 20180313_210603
.
photo 20180313_210605
.
photo 20180313_210630
.
photo 20180313_210632
.
photo 20180313_210645
.
photo 20180313_210648
.
photo 20180313_210846
.

.
photo 20180313_231634
.
photo 20180313_233804
.
photo 20180313_233824
.
photo 20180313_233828
.
photo 20180313_233913
.
photo 20180313_233929
.
photo 20180313_234017
.
photo 20180313_234040
.
photo 20180314_000112
.
photo 20180314_001134
.
photo 20180314_001141
.
photo 20180314_001148
.
photo 20180314_001157
.
photo 20180314_001241
.
photo 20180314_002029
.
photo 20180314_002122
.
photo 20180314_002133
.
photo 20180314_002142
.
photo 20180314_002305
.
photo 20180314_002423
.
photo 20180314_002428


Inflight Washroom / Comfort / Amenities



photo 20180313_225149
.
photo 20180313_225200
.
photo 20180313_225205
.
photo 20180313_225210
.
photo 20180313_225216
.
photo 20180313_225233
.
photo 20180313_200525
.
photo 20180313_200531
.
photo 20180313_200536
.
photo 20180313_200807
.
photo 20180313_200832


The checked blanket - nice and cosy and fresh !
photo 20180313_202808
.
photo 20180313_202835

I had difficulty sleeping as someone in the row in front had their tv on and the glare was very bright. Upon request, an eye mask was brought to me and was comfortable and had a good level of darkness.

photo 20180313_221505
.
photo 20180313_221532

The Cabin Crew are to be commended for exceptionally attentive,kind,courteous and professional service at all times during the flight. Japan should be very proud of it's cabin crew who worked endlessly throughout the flight and kept the cabin and washrooms meticulously clean.

A look at JAL's Cabin Crew uniform - the Senior Crew Member wears a white jacket over the navy uniform. All my crew were female.

photo jal crew uniform
.
photo jalcrew1

When needing assistance with the immigration form I was helped attentively so I could fill out the form properly.
Another Airhostess was worried for me regarding the Sky Oasis items and checked all ingredients - truly above and beyond.
I also spoke to various crew regarding Manchester,Tokyo travel and practised Japanese phrases.
The Cabin Crew were well groomed caring,hospitable,friendly.

When I advised I wanted to make a photo of the middle washroom as it was so spacious, an Airhostess locked it for me until I came back with my phone !

In another instance I had my foot out in the aisle and almost tripped an Airhostess yet she said sorry. I felt so bad and upset but she didn't make me feel bad in any way.

Premium Economy Peekabo whilst waiting to enter the central washroom which has a Japanese style toilet with a bidet !
photo 20180313_200251

Breakfast time is approaching…

photo 20180314_004224
.
photo 20180314_004302
.
photo 20180314_004317


Time for Oshibori again ! The Airhostess giggled when I asked for a whole one !
photo 20180314_004334
.
photo 20180314_004459
.
photo 20180314_004856

The Finnish Blueberry Yoghurt was really nice and a great way to round off breakfast. I believe my Breakfast hot entree was a potatoe type pastry with chicken accompanied by curried vegetables and spinach, along with a bread roll and fresh Papaya and grapes.

photo 20180314_005028
.
photo 20180314_010729
.
photo 20180314_010904

Let's start our descent into Japan !

photo 20180314_010913
.
photo 20180314_010932
.
photo 20180314_081435
.
photo 20180314_083913
.
photo 20180314_083955
.
photo 20180314_084056
.
photo 20180314_084100
.
photo 20180314_084120
.
photo 20180314_084320

This set of clouds looked like the UK and as we were flying a bit further back I swear I could see my birth country Scotland ! See if you can see Scotland !

photo 20180314_085654
.
photo 20180314_090008
.
photo 20180314_090012
.
photo 20180314_090026
.
photo 20180314_090124
.
photo 20180314_090213
.
photo 20180314_090239

Echigo Mountains - the smaller cousins of Mount Fuji !

photo 20180314_090251
.
photo 20180314_090253
.
photo 20180314_090326


I had earlier asked an Airhostess if she could check that I would get a good view of Mount Fuji ahead of landing. Around 70 minutes before landing,her colleague came to my seat and advised she had checked that we will get a view of Mount Fuji around 0900/0905am. My Japanese friend next door pointed Fuji out to me and I wouldn't have noticed just the tip ( or caldera ) had he not pointed it out. The original Airhostess I had asked for clarification of the view came by and also had to strain her eyes to see. At the exit row a few rows ahead another Airhostess was looking out with a passenger as the passenger took photos of Mount Fuji. Please view this review on a large / widescreen PC monitor to see the tip/caldera of Mount Fuji…believe me it is there !

photo 20180314_090417
.
photo 20180314_090558
.
photo 20180314_090601
.
photo 20180314_090631
.
photo 20180314_090744
.
photo 20180314_090749
.
photo 20180314_091018
.
photo 20180314_091338
.
photo 20180314_091341
.
photo 20180314_091449
.
photo 20180314_091459
.
photo 20180314_091626
.
photo 20180314_091630
.
photo 20180314_091700
.
photo 20180314_091739
.
photo 20180314_091856
.
photo 20180314_091941
.
photo 20180314_092034
.
photo 20180314_092145


After landing in Tokyo Narita at 0940am,there was a long taxi to the gate.

photo 20180314_093049


Arrival onto gate on JA864J and next to our sistership JA865J

photo 20180314_093101
.
photo 20180314_093116


After we parked up, this video of JAL / Japanese images started playing ! Surely this would make more sense whilst boarding ?!

photo 20180314_093239
.
photo 20180314_093344
.
photo 20180314_093350
.
photo 20180314_093415
.
photo 20180314_093500


Business Luxury ! One day God willing !
photo 20180314_094000.
.

Welcome to Japan !!!

photo screenshot_2018-03-25-13-14-15-1

I had asked for some mementoes of the flight and got given a gift bag before leaving the flight and a photo with cabin crew AND the entire flight crew !
I wouldn't get to see the Gift Bag until I was in Seoul later that day……
.
photo 20180314_101947

A look at the beautiful gifts I got given on my first ever JAL flight !

photo gifts
.
photo 20180321_155949
.
photo 20180321_160047
.
photo 20180321_160518
.
photo 20180321_160541

Scooty !

photo 20180314_094430
.
photo 20180314_094603
.
photo 20180314_094608

Upon disembarkation, I passed a security officer and would encounter my first authentic experience of Japanese kindness on Japanese soil !
I told him I have just arrived on JAL from Helsinki and have a connecting flight on Korean Air but on a separate ticket.
This lovely gentleman walked me to the JAL Transfer counter and advised as we walked that I can avoid having to collect my bag and re check in as the bag would get retagged to Seoul Incheon and I don't have to enter Japan until my return trip !


photo 20180314_101206
.
photo 20180314_101226
.
photo 20180314_102307


So I hope you really enjoyed this review and will join me very shortly on KE704 to Seoul Incheon ! Arigatoh ( Thank You in Japanese ) for reading !
See more

Verdict

Japan Airlines

9.3/10
Cabin10.0
Cabin crew10.0
Entertainment7.0
Meal/catering10.0

Helsinki - HEL

10.0/10
Efficiency10.0
Access10.0
Services10.0
Cleanliness10.0

Tokyo - NRT

10.0/10
Efficiency10.0
Access10.0
Services10.0
Cleanliness10.0

Conclusion

My first ever JAL flight ...truly First Class in every way. The professionalism and friendliness of the crew was way above anything I have seen in the skies.
In fact it is no surprise that Royal Jordanian and Qatar Airways are in the oneworld alliance with JAL.
Having flown all 3 I can safely say the quality standards are exceptional.
The only constructive criticism is that I would like to see a much wider selection of English language Pop Music as the channels seem very limited.
But other than that I had a superior experience and JAL is truly a great ambassador for Japan !
Cabin Presentation and cleanliness is great but could be improved by correctly aligned pillows/blankets. Also,some blankets are in transparent packaging and others in frosted which shows inconsistency.
A suggestion that JAL could have one Airhostess dressed in a Kimono / as a Geisha for photo opportunities onboard - this would promote Japan and add an authentic touch onboard - a little like JAL's oneworld partner Royal Jordanian who have an Airhostess boarding passengers in the in traditional Jordanian Yahala dress ( see my reports ).

Informations on the route Helsinki (HEL) Tokyo (NRT)

The contributors of Flight-Report published 4 reviews of 2 airlines on the route Helsinki (HEL) → Tokyo (NRT).


Useful

The airline with the best average grade is with /10.

The average flight time is 9.0 hours and 15.0 minutes.

  More informations

2 Comments

  • Comment 439511 by
    KL651 TEAM 4182 Comments

    Thanks for this extensive FR.
    In order to facilitate reading, could you please shorten your introduction and use more landscape sized pics next time?
    Great experience on JAL once again, it's great how they have all these goodies for AvGeeks.
    When flying JAL is the same price as flying Finnair for the HEL-NRT portion, one should indeed not hesitate a second!

    • Comment 439564 by
      TheWindowSeat AUTHOR 96 Comments

      Hi KL651 - Thanks for your feedback ( compared to the abuse I got yesterday from a nobody with zero flight reports). I am looking at shortening the introduction and working with landscape photos ( where appropriate). Thanks again and yes indeed it is nice that the JAL Cabin Crew cared so much about my first flight. Shame my first KLM flights were my last as they sincerely didn't care about my fandom.

Login to post a comment.