Some good news for those of you looking to try one of the most impressive-looking new First and Business Class seats of 2019, with confirmation that ANA will fly its latest cabin fit from Tokyo to Frankfurt starting on 1st February 2020.
Timetables have already been updated to reflect the change, making the German financial capital the airline’s third route to boast the new seats.
ANA operates two Boeing 777-300ER flights between Tokyo Haneda and Frankfurt each day.
The new cabin products are being introduced on only one of those flights in each direction, the NH203 from Haneda to Frankfurt departing at close to 1am, and NH204 from Frankfurt to Haneda at 11.30am, with early morning arrival the following day.
If you’re flying on NH223/224, with daytime service from Japan and evening departure from Frankfurt, you’ll still have the older seats even after 1st February 2020.
The new cabin products are highlighted in the schedule below.
From 1st February 2020
|Flight||From / To||Aircraft||Days|
|NH203||HND0050 – FRA0520||77W||Daily|
|NH223||HND1120 – FRA1540||77W||Daily|
|NH204||FRA1130 – HND0655*||77W||Daily|
|NH224||FRA2045 – HND1615*||77W||Daily|
* Next day
Be careful to ensure you choose the correct flights on the Frankfurt route to avoid disappointment, as there is one new cabin and one old cabin programmed each day from February 2020.
ANA is already offering daily service from Tokyo Haneda to London, and from both Tokyo Haneda and Narita to New York with the new cabins, on a daily basis.
Here’s how the schedule looks for those services.
|Flight||From / To||Aircraft||Days|
|NH211||HND1140 – LHR1525||77W||Daily|
|NH212||LHR1900 – HND1550*||77W||Daily|
* Next day
|Flight||From / To||Aircraft||Dates|
|NH110||HND1020 – JFK0900||77W||Daily|
|NH109||JFK1655 – HND2110*||77W||Daily|
|NH10||NRT1640 – JFK1510||77W||Daily|
|NH9||JFK1045 – NRT1500*||77W||Daily|
* Next day
How to tell your flight has the new seats
ANA operates four different variants of the 777-300ER:
- 264 seats (8F / 52J / 24W / 180Y)
- 250 seats (8F / 52J / 24W / 166Y)
- 212 seats (8F / 68J / 24W / 112Y)
- New 212 seats (8F / 64J / 24W / 116Y)
It’s the “New 212 seats” configuration which has the latest cabin products.
The easiest way to check whether your flight will have the new seats is the seat map in Business Class. On the aircraft with the older seats the Business Class seat map goes up to row 17 or row 21. On the new aircraft it ends at row 20.
If you’re using a third-party function to view the seat map, rather than the ANA website, you’ll be able to spot the back of the cabin as row 20 quite easily.
Here’s how it looks on ExpertFlyer, comparing a 212 New configuration (left) with a standard 212 configuration (right).
If you are flying on NH203/204 (Frankfurt) or either of the JFK flights from 28th March 2020 onwards, the seat map for your flight will still reflect the older seats.
Don’t worry – that’s because ANA has not yet loaded the new aircraft configuration for the summer schedule, which they should do in the coming weeks.
Why is it so exciting?
ANA first announced these new cabins back in July 2019, and it’s safe to say they impressed from the outset.
In First Class, which ANA calls “The Suite”, an all-new design is inspired by luxury Japanese hotels. Here you’ll find fully enclosed seating, the most spacious the airline has ever installed on its aircraft, finished in a luxury dark wood.
New features include the addition of privacy-enhancing doors as well as a crystal-clear 43-inch in-flight entertainment screen. The airline claims this is the world’s first 4K personal monitor on a commercial airliner.
First Class suites also feature a movable partition, which can be adjusted upon request to ‘pair’ two middle seats together when travelling as a couple, or with friend or colleague.
A total of eight First Class ‘Suites’ are installed on the airline’s new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft, in an intimate two-row cabin with a 1-2-1 configuration.
In the Business Class cabin (called “The Room”) there are 64 seats across three separate sections in a 1-2-1 configuration, featuring direct aisle access for all passengers.
These seats alternate between forward-facing and rear-facing at each row, rather like the Qatar Airways Qsuite.
The design is inspired by modern, multifunctional Japanese living spaces, and includes doors at the seat side which can be used to create an enclosed suite.
The width of the Boeing 777-300ER cabin allows this to be a huge space, around twice as wide as existing ANA Business Class seats, including a large ‘sofa’.
The finish is in three different styles of wood, Rosewood, Light Japanese Ash and Dark Japanese Ash, complemented by ANA’s signature deep blue accent hues inside each compartment.
A redesigned self-service bar counter with a TV monitor and a fridge is also offered.
God Save The Points jumped on board one of the first Heathrow to Tokyo flights fitted with the new seats to try out “The Room” Business Class.
It’s safe to say the reality of the experience seems to have lived up to the hype, with Gilbert claiming it to be the “new world’s best”.
One major aspect we’ve covered from the outset regarding using your miles or points to fly in these new seats is that Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer programme is a horribly expensive way to try it.
|KrisFlyer Star Alliance Redemption Tokyo ⇄ Frankfurt|
Flying non-stop from Singapore to Frankfurt on SIA, assuming a saver award, costs 38,000 miles in Economy, 92,000 miles in Business and 125,000 miles in First Class.
That’s between 17% and 25% less than the Star Alliance award rate between Japan and Europe, with the Singapore – Frankfurt leg clocking in at around an hour longer than Tokyo – Frankfurt.
You’ll do much better on this city pair by using miles or points from another Star Alliance scheme, as shown below.
|Other FFP redemption rates Tokyo ⇄ Frankfurt|
A number of good options here if you hold (or can transfer) miles in the right ‘currency’, not least Turkish Miles&Smiles at just 45,000 one-way in Business Class.
Finally if you have miles in ANA’s own Mileage Club programme, even more competitive rates are possible in some cases.
Unfortunately you must redeem a round-trip ticket using ANA miles, with pricing based on season.
|ANA Mileage Club Redemption Tokyo ⇄ Frankfurt (return)|
As you can see for a round-trip itinerary you’re looking at 80,000 ANA miles in low season, 10,000 miles cheaper than the next best alternative (Turkish) and an incredible 142,000 miles cheaper than using KrisFlyer for the same itinerary.
The important message here is not to use KrisFlyer miles for ANA redemptions on the Tokyo – Frankfurt route. Pretty much every other programme gives you much better value.
These four daily return flights on the London (1), New York (2) and Frankfurt (1) routes occupy all six of ANA’s Boeing 777-300ERs newly delivered with the latest cabin products on a full time basis. For those interested, that’s registrations JA793A through JA798A.
The airline also plans to retrofit another six older aircraft with these new seats, for a total of 12 in service “between 2020 and 2021”.
We don’t have any information on when the refits are expected to start, but hopefully new destinations will be added to the portfolio from later in 2020.
These might include:
- Los Angeles
- San Francisco
- Washington D.C.
Once we have news of where’s next on the list, we’ll be sure to let you know.
We knew Frankfurt was set to be the next city to receive these new seats, but now we know exactly when. From February 2020, the daily NH203/204 flights will join London Heathrow and New York services with “The Suite” and “The Room” installed.
It’s worth being careful as the other Frankfurt service, NH223/224, does not have any new cabin products planned at the time of writing, so be sure to choose the right one.
If you’re lucky enough to find award availability (we found some seats in Business Class during November 2020), then do consider using one of the more efficient frequent flyer programmes to book if you can, since KrisFlyer offers poor value on the Tokyo – Frankfurt route.
Hat-tip to One Mile at a Time
(Cover Photo: ANA)