Japan Airlines is investing in the first class ground experience at its Tokyo Haneda Airport (HND) hub.
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Japan Airlines’ exclusive new first class check-in
Japan Airlines has revealed that it’s introducing what’s being referred to as the “JAL First Class Entrance” at Tokyo Haneda Airport Terminal 3. This appears to essentially be an exclusive check-in facility where you can have a seat while your check-in is being processed, and then you have direct access to a priority security checkpoint.
Here’s how the airline describes this facility on its website (translated from Japanese):
“A special entrance that welcomes first class passengers. The ultimate journey begins in a space with elegant colors and a profound feel.”
“The space, which stylishly expresses sophisticated Japanese style, will make your time before departure a special one. You will stay here during the departure procedures, and once they are completed, you will be able to pass through the adjacent priority security checkpoint and proceed smoothly to immigration.”
Note that this facility is just for those traveling in first class on Japan Airlines. It’s not open to oneworld Emerald members, unlike the Japan Airlines First Class Lounge. So given how small Japan Airlines’ first class footprint is, this facility will see at most a few dozen people per day (and most days probably not even that many).
This space looks super elegant, and also quite large, given how few people will use this. Actually, the more I look at this facility, I have to wonder if this might almost be an over-investment on the carrier’s part? Easy access to priority security is of course awesome, but nowadays don’t a vast majority of people check-in online? And even for those who don’t, doesn’t it typically take a minute at most to check-in?
This almost seems like a concept that’s a couple of decades too late, as this would have been great in the days before online check-in, when there were paper tickets, etc. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still great, I just think the actual sit-down facility is of limited use for most passengers.
This coincides with Japan Airlines’ new first class
Japan Airlines’ exclusive check-in facility opens on January 24, 2024. That date isn’t random, but rather it’s exactly the same day when Japan Airlines will start A350-1000 service, which is the carrier’s new flagship aircraft, featuring an all-new passenger experience.
It’s so nice to see that Japan Airlines isn’t just investing in improving its first class seating, but the airline is working on improving the rest of the experience as well. I can’t wait to check out this new product, because I’m pretty confident it’ll rank near the top of the world’s best first class products (it should be in the top three, and maybe even in the first or second spot… we’ll see!).
On January 24, 2024, Japan Airlines will open a new first class check-in facility at Tokyo Haneda Airport. This will be exclusively for first class passengers (and not oneworld Emerald members), and will offer a sit-down check-in experience, plus access to a priority security lane. This is a nice investment on the carrier’s part, and I can’t wait to check it out.
What do you make of Japan Airlines’ new first class facility?