If you’re hoping to try ANA’s awesome new First and Business Class products, here’s some good news: ANA has eliminated fuel surcharges on flights to and from Japan, allowing you to enjoy the experience for much less.
ANA’s revised fuel surcharges
Before you celebrate, an important caveat to note: ANA has removed fuel surcharges for flights that start or end in Japan (technically they haven’t removed them; they’ve just made them JPY 100 (S$1.30) per leg)
However, if you’re merely transiting through Japan, you’ll still encounter the surcharges. For example, this round-trip Business Class itinerary from SIN-HND-JFK still attracts S$589.60 of fuel surcharges…
…while this round-trip Business Class itinerary from NRT-JFK only has a token 200 JPY (~S$2.60) of surcharges attached.
While that’s slightly disappointing, it doesn’t mean this development is completely useless. It just means you need to be a bit clever about how you book your award flights.
Let’s say you wanted to try THE Room (random capitalization inherent from source), ANA’s phenomenal new Business Class. This product is available on all flights between Tokyo Haneda/Narita and New York.
Now, you could book a SIN-HND/NRT-JFK itinerary all on ANA, but then you’d have to pay 211,000 KrisFlyer miles round-trip, plus a S$589.60 of fuel surcharge, as we saw earlier.
Instead, why not fly SIN-HND/NRT on Singapore Airlines, then connect to ANA for HND/NRT-JFK? This would still cost the same 211,000 KrisFlyer miles, but with just S$2.60 of fuel surcharges (Singapore Airlines doesn’t levy fuel surcharges on any of its flights).
|211,000 miles may sound a lot, but it’s just a small premium over the 198,000 miles you’d pay if you flew this whole route on Singapore Airlines metal.|
The Singapore Airlines website may not piece this itinerary together, so you’ll basically need to do two separate searches:
- Find a Singapore Airlines flight from SIN-NRT/HND that has immediately confirmable space in Business Saver (you can’t use Advantage space for a Star Alliance award)
- Find an ANA flight from NRT/HND-JFK with Business Class space
- Call KrisFlyer customer service and feed them the flight numbers and timings; they should be able to put together the itinerary and charge it as a single award.
Fortunately, it’s now much easier to search for Star Alliance award flights thanks to Singapore Airlines’ new search interface, which lets you rapidly browse through weeks of award space.
In the screenshot below, I’ve managed to find award space on NH10 that departs NRT on 1640 on 11 May.
I could, theoretically, connect to it from SQ638, which arrives in NRT at 0800. Yes, a 9 hour layover isn’t workable for most people so this isn’t the best of examples, but hopefully it shows you the underlying idea.
ANA offers good connectivity to North America
Even if you’re not specifically interested in ANA’s new cabin products, the removal of fuel surcharges can still benefit you if you’re hoping to fly to North America.
ANA serves many additional destinations that Singapore Airlines does not, such as Chicago, Mexico City, Vancouver and Washington D.C. You can follow the same steps to fly to these destinations surcharge free- find a Singapore Airlines flight to Tokyo, then pair it with an onwards ANA flight.
Previously, your best bet would have been to fly to any of Singapore Airlines’ US gateways and purchase a separate connecting flight, or try and find a Star Alliance award featuring SQ and UA. Trust me, you’d much rather fly SQ/NH than SQ/UA.
Don’t forget the Miles&Smiles option
I’ve so far been referring to KrisFlyer miles prices, but let’s not forget that Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles has an incredible sweet spot for travel between Singapore and the USA- round-trip Business Class awards cost just 135,000 miles (First Class is 200,000 miles).
There is a fly in the ointment, though. Remember that fuel surcharges are only eliminated if you fly to/from Japan, not through Japan. However, Miles&Smiles (like all partner programs) only has restricted access to Singapore Airlines First/Business Class space. The whole thing falls apart if you can’t use Miles&Smiles to book the Singapore to Tokyo leg.
If memory serves me right, Singapore Airlines does operate its B787-10s between Singapore and Tokyo (at least before Covid-19), and partner programs may be able to access award space on this particular aircraft. It’s a long shot though, and I’d certainly confirm availability before transferring any points to Miles&Siles.
Turkish Airlines is a transfer partner of Citibank, so keep that in mind for the future.
ANA’s removal of fuel surcharges is great news, and opens up many additional ways of getting from Singapore to North America (not to mention trying their latest cabin products).
It’s another thing to look forward to when travel once again becomes possible.
(HT: Straight to the Points)