Deep dive into the current state of ANA award bookings, new alternatives from Japan Airlines, why Cathay Pacific is the best JAL partner, plus tips for booking.

  • 04:02 - ANA 2024 Update
  • 16:22 - New alternative: Japan Airlines
  • 24:44 - Why Cathay Pacific is the best JAL partner
  • 29:47 - More Cathay Pacific Benefits
  • 32:25 - Cathay x JAL Booking Process & Quirks

Show Notes

Japan Airlines New First Class Suite

Mentioned in episode

◀ Previously

  • ✈️ How to Book ANA First & Business - Episode 23

🤖 AI Episode Highlights

The following highlights were generated entirely by AI, with no editing from me... let me know what you think 😂

Booking Flights with Cathay Pacific: "It is a very nice, like, you know, on par with ANA and also kind of go into how you go about booking Japan Airlines and why Cathay Pacific is the best partner, in my opinion, to book these Japan Airlines flights."

— Kai [00:02:48 → 00:03:03]

ANA Award Booking Challenges: "it's a lot harder to book it now. It's become extremely competitive, but not only more competitive, but also a lot more inconsistent with how many award seats they release."

— Kai [00:04:15 → 00:04:27]

Maximizing Award Travel: "If you're trying to do two people, and I think that's probably the majority of cases, most of us are traveling with a p two. That's when things get challenging, and that's when you have to really brace yourself for the amount of checking and potential stress and potential worry that you transfer over 300,000 points and then nothing shows up for the dates that you want."

— Kai [00:09:19 → 00:09:40]

Air Travel Strategies: "The first easier one is just to go with the less popular city, like fly through Chicago versus, you know, from the west coast. The downside with flying through Chicago or from Chicago is that it is still running on the old plane. So you may get lucky and they switch over to the new plane. But chances are you're flying the old Ana suites, which are still really nice, like, still very much worth the cost, which is a really competitive cost, which is 75k round trip for business or 150k round trip for first. So amazing rate, even if you're flying the old planes."

— Kai [00:10:08 → 00:10:48]

Maximizing Air Travel Awards with Japan Airlines: "Additionally, another massive benefit with Japan Airlines is that you can book one way awards so you don't have to wait for the return leg to be bookable and book a dummy return in order to secure your outbound flight. You can just secure the outbound flight by itself on the day it releases and then later secure the return flight on the day it releases."

— Kai [00:23:23 → 00:23:47]

Flight Booking Strategies: "You don't have to do any weird shenanigans. You don't need a VPN, you don't need to call cafe and do this. You do it all online and it is so easy."

— Kai [00:27:56 → 00:28:05]

Travel Hacking Insights: "It's not that hard to earn 100,000 miles. How much is your time and your just general mental health and well being worth? Is it worth 100,000 miles? Probably, because at the end of the day, we're all churners here, right?"

— Kai [00:28:56 → 00:29:10]

Booking Quirks with Japanese Airlines: "So the Tokyo to Osaka flight can only be seen and booked when it's searched for and booked as part of a full flight that isn't just domestic to Japan."

— Kai [00:38:27 → 00:38:38]

Travel Booking Tips: "Cathay allows up to five stopovers on a round trip award ticket. They used to allow stopovers on even a one way ticket, but I think that ended in 2020. So now it's only on round trip."

— Kai [00:40:01 → 00:40:15]

Travel Planning Tips: "We have companion pass this year, so really easy and cheap to do positioning flights to get into some of these cities."

— Kai [00:42:21 → 00:42:29]