Guide to Flying First Class on ANA, All Nippon Airways: All You Need to Know in 2024

by Jem
ANA first class Featured Image
This post may have affiliate links, where I may receive a commission if you purchase through them. Here's our Disclosure and Privacy Policy for more info.

Want to fly in style? In this ANA first class guide, we’ll show you what flying looks like with one of Japan’s best airlines. From the booking experience to in-flight amenities, we’ll cover all the perks of first class on All Nippon Airways.

Flying ANA first class is like getting the golden ticket in air travel. I’ve checked out a bunch of first-class cabins, always chasing that “wow” factor. And let me tell you, ANA’s first class is in a league of its own.

In this guide, we’re diving into everything that makes ANA’s first class a cut above the rest. Think less about just flying and more about an experience that blends luxury with unmatched Japanese hospitality.

If you’re dreaming of Tokyo’s neon lights or the serene beauty of Kyoto, this guide is your insider’s look at flying to Japan in style. Let’s kick off this adventure and find out why I believe ANA is one of the best airlines in the world.

My #1 tip to find cheap first class tickets with ANA

Looking to save BIG on ANA First Class? Before jumping into the article, I first wanted to give you this insider tip to find cheap airfare on first class flights.

For years, I’ve been using this site called Going (formerly Scott’s Cheap Flights), which sends you alerts on airline deals, discounts, and mistake fares. It’s a total game-changer, saving me $10,000+ on flights each year.

Their $49/year premium version is well worth it- just one discounted flight pays for the whole thing. I recommend trying the free trial and using my special discount code JON20 to save 20%!

And if you’re into business/first class, you’ll want to sign up for their Elite version. Last year, this service saved me $2,750 on a first class flight and $1,500 on a business class flight. At just $199 year year, trust me, it’s a small price for massive savings.

Overview of ANA first class

All Nippon Airways (ANA’s) journey began on 27 December 1952. This airline has grown into a powerhouse with a fleet of 204 planes, earning a shiny 5-star rating from Skytrax for its exceptional service.

With 92 destinations, they’ve got Japan covered from the snowy peaks of Hokkaido down to the tropical vibes of Okinawa. Beyond Japan, ANA’s wings stretch to various corners of the world. This includes China, Korea, India, Southeast Asia, Canada, the United States, Mexico, Australia, and Western Europe.

Their main international hub at Narita International Airport serves as a gateway for global explorers. Meanwhile, Haneda Airport is quickly becoming a key international hub too, thanks to its proximity to downtown Tokyo and recent expansions. With ANA, you’re all set for an unforgettable flight experience.

Ready to explore ANA first class in more detail? Let’s dive right in.

ANA First Class flight for all types of travelers.

ANA first class benefits

ANA’s first class is an experience tailored to exceed expectations at every turn. Let’s dive into the benefits that make this choice stand out:

  • Personalized service: The heart of ANA First Class is its exceptional crew, whose attention to detail ensures a bespoke journey. Expect interactions that feel tailored just for you.
  • Amenities and comfort: From the moment you settle in, ANA surrounds you with comforts like a premium amenity kit, soft pajamas, and slippers. Plus, the added perk of complimentary Wi-Fi keeps you connected, no matter where you are in the skies.
  • Privacy and entertainment: Flying on the 777-300ER or Airbus A380? You’ll enjoy the luxury of privacy doors and a gigantic in-flight entertainment screen.
  • Control your comfort: Unique to the newest first-class cabins is the ability to adjust your airflow. It’s a small but significant feature for those who prefer a cooler environment.
  • Smooth check-in: ANA streamlines your airport experience with dedicated check-in counters, including a special ANA Suite check-in at Tokyo Narita (NRT).

With ANA, you’re signing up for an experience that sets the gold standard in the skies.

ANA first class products: A detailed comparison

I’ve had the joy of experiencing ANA’s offerings across different aircraft. There are some key differences depending on your route and aircraft type. Here’s what you need to know.

Boeing 777-300ER (The Suite)

This is the crème de la crème of ANA’s first class. The seats in The Suite feel like your own little world, thanks to those sliding doors. If you’re flying solo, snag a window seat for some stunning views and maximum privacy. Couples might prefer the middle seats for easy chit-chat. To check if you’re flying the new version, check the business class layout. If it stretches to row 20, you’re in for the new suite experience.

Boeing 777-300ER (Old Version)

The classic version, while not as flashy, has its charm. The absence of doors does mean a tad less privacy, but every seat still has aisle access. ANA is in the process of updating its 777-300ER fleet to the new Suite product.

Airbus A380

Flying to or from Honolulu? You’re likely on the A380. The First Class section here mimics the new suite’s vibe but feels even more exclusive. Located on the upper deck, seats are arranged in a 1-2-1 configuration. I’d recommend choosing seat 1A, right at the front of the aircraft.

These are the only aircraft in ANA’s fleet to feature a first-class cabin. Whichever you fly, a luxurious experience is guaranteed. If you’re looking at flying first class to Japan, these tips should help make your flight unforgettable.

I've enjoyed taking advantage of the airline's services on a variety of aircraft.
I’ve enjoyed taking advantage of the airline’s services on a variety of aircraft. | Image Credit: One Mile at a Time

ANA first class ground experience

Kicking off an ANA first-class adventure starts on the ground. First off, their baggage allowance is generous. Packing light isn’t in my vocabulary, so the generous three-bag allowance (each up to 70 pounds) is a lifesaver.

In Tokyo, at both Narita and Haneda airports, as well as in Osaka and Honolulu, ANA rolls out the red carpet for its first class passengers with amazing lounge access. Dubbed The Suite Lounge, these spaces are your serene haven before takeoff. You’ll find personalized service, shower suites to freshen up, and workstations if you need to catch up on emails. My favorite aspect of the lounge is the airline’s famous noodle bar, alongside a variety of buffet options. It’s worth noting, though, that unlike some other top-tier lounges, sit-down a la carte dining isn’t on the menu here.

For international flights departing from other locations, ANA ensures you have access to Star Alliance or partner airline lounges. At every airport it serves, ANA provides dedicated First Class check-in counters. You’ll find a special ANA Suite check-in at Tokyo Narita.

The first step in this airline's first-class journey begins on the ground.
The first step in this airline’s first-class journey begins on the ground. | Image Credit: One Mile at a Time

In-flight comfort & amenities on ANA first class

When flying first class with ANA, there’s a clear distinction between the new “The Suite” and the older product.

ANA’s Suite offers an unparalleled level of privacy and luxury, featuring just 8 seats. These seats are spacious, self-contained units with sliding doors to ensure privacy. The highlight is the fully flat seat complemented by a large 43-inch 4K monitor. For those seated in the center, a movable partition allows for privacy or interaction. I’d recommend these seats if you’re traveling as a couple.

Across all ANA first class products, including the A380, the commitment to passenger comfort is evident. Upon boarding, each suite is prepared with an amenity kit, noise-canceling headphones, and slippers. Additionally, passengers are offered a set of pajamas for maximum comfort during the flight. A basket filled with extra amenities, including eye masks, moisturizing masks, combs, and more, is also available.

All passengers in ANA first class receive a voucher for full-flight Wi-Fi access. This generous offering is consistent across both the new Suite and the older first class products. In short, you’re guaranteed a comfortable flight, whichever aircraft you’re flying on. This makes ANA one of the best airlines in Asia.

Food & drink in ANA first class

In ANA first class, the dining experience is top-notch. You can choose from a Western or a Japanese menu, the latter being a highlight if you enjoy seafood. Dining at 35,000 feet, especially with the Japanese set meal, is an experience in itself. ANA’s first class meals also feature a caviar course, a luxurious touch not to be missed.

For drinks, passengers are treated to premium options like Krug Grande Cuvee Champagne and Billecart Salmon from the start. Throughout the flight, there’s a wide selection of wine, sake, and spirits such as Johnnie Walker Blue Label and Suntory Whisky Hibiki. You’ll also find a variety of non-alcoholic choices including Japanese teas, coffees, juices, and soft drinks.

When flying with this airline, the food is great.
When flying with this airline, the food is great. | Image Credit: One Mile at a Time

Tips for booking ANA first class tickets

If you’re looking for cheap first class flights to ANA, I’ve got some tips on how to make that dream flight a reality.

  • Use points wisely: Whether it’s through Aeroplan or Virgin Atlantic Flying Club, leveraging your points effectively can open the door to ANA’s First Class. A round trip can often be secured for significantly less than you might expect. Expect to spend 110,000 points for a one-way first class ticket to Japan.
  • Plan ahead: My biggest tip for finding cheap flights to Japan is to start your search early, ideally 9–12 months in advance. Availability for one is easier to come by. If you’re planning for two, flexibility and early planning are key.
  • Subscribe to Cheap Flight Alerts: Again, if you want to find the best possible deals on business class airfare, I highly recommend signing up for Scott’s Cheap Flights (Going.com). While the free version is great for finding discounted economy flights, the Elite version is what you’ll need to find cheap business and first class deals.
  • Keep an eye on promotions: To book ANA first class with points, watch out for transfer bonuses from credit cards to airline programs like Virgin Atlantic. For example, transferring points during a 30% bonus period means you get more miles for the same number of credit card points.
  • Stay flexible: Flexibility in your travel dates and being open to departing from different cities can dramatically increase your chances of finding available seats.

ANA first class vs. rival products

When you’re looking for the best first class flights, ANA holds its own against some serious luxury heavyweights. Having flown ANA first class myself, I’ve also had the chance to experience what other top-tier airlines offer. Here’s how ANA stacks up against its lavish competitors:

ANA vs. Emirates

Emirates dazzles with its shower spa and the A380 onboard bar, setting the bar high for opulence. ANA’s “The Suite” offers understated elegance, focusing more on privacy and comfort with its fully flat beds and sliding doors. If you’re after high-tech and tranquil luxury, ANA is your match. Emirates wins if you’re chasing unmatched extravagance and a social vibe.

ANA vs. Qatar Airways

Qatar’s Al Safwa First Lounge and spacious suites set it apart for those who prioritize service and calm luxury. ANA, with its meticulous Japanese hospitality, ensures a serene and pampered journey. Honestly, it’s a close contest in terms of service quality. If you lean towards an experience enriched with cultural finesse, ANA won’t disappoint.

ANA vs. Singapore Airlines

Singapore Airlines steals the show with its ‘Book the Cook’ service and the option for a double bed in the sky. ANA, while not offering beds for two, impresses with its fine dining and attention to detail. For solo travelers seeking peace and privacy, ANA is incredibly appealing. In my opinion, Singapore takes the cake for couples or those who make cuisine a priority.

This airline can compete with some top names in luxury travel when it comes to first class flights.
This airline can compete with some top names in luxury travel when it comes to first class flights. | Image Credit: One Mile at a Time

Pros & cons of ANA first class

Having flown ANA first class, I’ve noticed some clear pros and cons that might help you decide if it’s the right choice for your travels.

Pros

  • Unmatched comfort: The moment you sink into ANA’s First Class seat, which effortlessly becomes a fully flat bed, you know you’re in for a good night’s sleep. Paired with top-notch bedding, comfort is simply unparalleled.
  • Lounge access: ANA’s exclusive lounges, especially in Tokyo, are sanctuaries of peace and luxury. From delicious dining options to serene workspaces, they set the tone for the journey ahead.
  • On-board dining: With options to choose from a Western or Japanese set menu, dining is a highlight.
  • Privacy: In “The Suite,” personal space is redefined with sliding doors and secluded suites.
  • Generous baggage allowance: Being able to check up to three bags at 70 lbs each takes the stress out of packing. It’s a small but significant touch that adds to the luxury.
  • Service: The meticulous attention and personalized service in First Class are reflective of Japan’s renowned hospitality. It’s attentive without being intrusive.

Cons

  • The price tag: Excellence comes at a price, and ANA First Class is no exception. It’s a significant investment compared to other classes.
  • No showers up high: While not a deal-breaker for most, the absence of shower facilities onboard might be a miss for some, especially when comparing with airlines like Emirates.
  • Experience may vary: Depending on the aircraft, the experience can slightly differ. While always luxurious, the newer Suite product is in a league of its own.
  • Surcharges on award tickets: When redeeming points, be prepared for surcharges. It’s a small gripe in the grand scheme but worth noting for points enthusiasts.
You can tell you're going to get a restful night's sleep as soon as you settle into their First Class seat.
You can tell you’re going to get a restful night’s sleep as soon as you settle into their First Class seat. | Image Credit: One Mile at a Time

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about ANA first class

Are you still curious about which airline is the best to fly to Japan? Here are some popular questions (and answers) I get that will help decide whether ANA is the right option for you.

What is the difference between business and first on ANA?

On ANA, the leap from business to first class is like going from a premium experience to an ultra-luxurious one. In business class, you’re treated to fantastic lie-flat seats, excellent service, and quality dining. But stepping into First Class, the difference is palpable. Here, you get even more space with seats that feel like private rooms, thanks to sliding doors in “The Suite” on newer aircraft. The personal attention is ramped up with nearly one-on-one service from the flight crew. Plus, the dining experience is elevated with even finer meals and exclusive offerings like caviar.

Does ANA have lie flat seats?

Yes, ANA has lie flat seats. Whether you’re flying business or first, you can stretch out completely. The seats fold down into fully flat beds.

It's like winning the lottery when it comes to flying when you book with this airline.
It’s like winning the lottery when it comes to flying when you book first class with this airline.

Does ANA first class serve caviar?

Oh, absolutely! Caviar makes its grand appearance on ANA first class, among other luxurious dining options. It’s part of their top-tier menu.

What is better: ANA or Japan Airlines?

Tough call! Both airlines offer stellar services. However, if we’re splitting hairs, ANA takes the lead in terms of credit card partners and loyalty program perks, especially for those deep into the points game. JAL, though, might edge out with fewer extra fees and a top-notch economy experience. Personally, I lean towards ANA for those amazing first class experiences and the solid value of their Mileage Club.

ANA First Class to try right now.
Enjoyed reading about the Guide to ANA First Class? Pin it!

You may also like

Leave a Comment