Canadian Travel Press
Issue Date: Oct 15, 2018
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ANA upbeat about its use of Tokyo airport


ANA has gone from being an operation that began with two helicopters to one that has a very weighty presence in both Japanese and international airspace.
Kana Watanabe, assistant manager of passenger sales in ANA’s Vancouver office, reports that her carrier is the largest in Japan, outpacing Japan Airlines in terms of both revenue and the number of passengers carried.
Watanabe adds that ANA – which flies to points throughout Japan – has also been serving international destinations for over 30 years, including major cities throughout Asia.
But she adds the Star Alliance member has also been flying to Vancouver for several years, something she says is boosting its profile in this country. The daily Vancouver flights use Haneda Airport, found right in Tokyo, which Watanabe says is preferable to Narita, which is more than an hour from the Japanese capital.
She also notes that Vancouver-bound service leaves Haneda at 9:50 p.m., enabling passengers to spend a “whole day in Tokyo.
“It’s definitely growing,” she says of ANA’s profile in Canada. “I think it definitely helps that we’re going to Haneda.”
Vancouver flights feature Business, Premium Economy and Economy service, with Watanabe reporting that authoritative Skytrax gave Japan Airlines a five-star rating this year, but ANA has received it for six straight years.
Watanabe suggests her carrier’s impressing Skytrax is in part a result of a Japanese commitment “to a higher level of service. We take so much pride in customer service.”
That belief in satisfying clients is demonstrated in part by ANA’s efforts to accommodate airborne passengers, with Watanabe reporting that passengers have proposed on ANA aircraft and others have received birthday cakes, ensuring that they’ll “leave with a good memory. It’s a win-win situation.”
ANA pays travel agents commissions.
Watanabe notes that ANA business class passengers leaving from Vancouver can use the Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge and the Plaza Premium Lounge.
Meanwhile, Watanabe notes ANA’s North American networks also include Chicago, from where the airline has twice-daily service, with one flight going to Narita and the other Haneda.
The airline also plans to use an A380 on its Honolulu route, with that large plane having 25 flight attendants.
Both ANA and Japan Airlines have signed on as sponsors of the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics.
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