After spending some time in the lounge at Jakarta airport I headed to gate D7 where there was a final security check point. I handed over my boarding pass and was directed to the priority boarding area.
Funny enough I bumped into a whole bunch of mileage runners, all of them from the US and all of them doing their end of year EXP runs. EXP stands for Executive Platinum, the highest elite status with American Airlines.
As we were walking to the plane I got asked if I was also doing the DFW-CGK-NRT-JFK run, euh no I’m on a 19 flight run… “WTF! You’re doing what?” “How many miles will you get?” “How much did you pay?”
First impression of the JAL crew, very humble. They will take a bow to you before even asking you a question. Shortly after take off I was greeted by my family name and was handed a 3 page evaluation form which they kindly asked to fill out. I checked around the cabin and it looked like I was the only one who got this, don’t know why though? Anyone knows?
Oh btw I got really lucky with my seat mate in the middle seat… Not! He was taking down an entire forest! Hooray for ear plugs!
This flight on JAL’s 777-300 was not full at all, people are scattered over both the business and economy cabins for the ride to Tokyo Narita. Everyone received some Japanese rice crackers, a small snack and a refreshing drink after which the cabin light were dimmed. I passed in and out of sleep for the next few hours, until breakfast service started at around 4.30am Tokyo time.
Now this has to have been the best quality of food I have ever been served in economy class. A fresh bun, fresh fruit, fresh salad, juice, tea and a very tasty omelet with tomatoes, potatoes and mushrooms. Seriously, best economy airplane food ever! And here the JAL staff shines again, the way they serve you, attend you… If this is economy service, it makes me curious about their business and first class products!
After landing at Narita airport we all gathered at the security checkpoint for connecting flights and decision was made to spend our time at the JAL First Class lounge. As we had enough Oneworld Emerald members in the group, they could take in the Sapphire members as a guest.
In the end it turned out there were 14 mileage runners in the lounge haha, the next couple hours were spend eating, talking, exchanging info, arranging seats for upcoming flights, taking a shower, getting a massage, oh and of course plenty of drinking with an open bar…
Now let me tell that a mix of apple juice, champagne and half a bottle of JD really knocks you out haha! I remember getting on the plane in Tokyo, but I sure have a black hole till about an hour and a half before landing at JFK… I slept solid, even in the back of this 777-300 on seat 48G I had plenty of space to stretch my legs. The seat is good too, but at the moment I can’t say it’s comfy cause my butt is sore from sitting on planes for close to a week!
Two more days and then I will be back in Belgium, but before that I will have another 8 flights… Yes I know, crazy!