japan airlines

Tokyo Trip Report Part One: The Initial Introduction

Part One: The Initial Introduction
Part Two: V Gates?
Part Three: The Hajj on Lufthansa First
Part Four: There’s No Place Like Home (When Home is the First Class Terminal)
Part Five: Axis to Axis, Busts to Busts
Part Six: The Rising Sun, The Setting Fun
Part Seven: Turning Japanese in JAL First
Part Eight: Mormon-ey, More Party (at the SkyClub)
Part Nine: What’s Next?

Despite having travelled around the world for more than twenty years, we don’t generally like to leave the comfort of our first class cabin, lounge or hotel suite. Having lost our parents to the dangers of the “outside world” at a very young age, we remain wary of taking too many risks with foreign cultures, particularly those that various IFE programs have shown to be threatening, namely Russians, Sicilians, Chinese, Iranians, Arabians, most types of Africans, Asians, the Welsh, Hindoos, North Vietnamese, Kali-worshippers, Colombians, Ukrainians, Mongols, Jews, Cubans, Eastern Germans, Mexicans/Aztecs, the French, Moslems, the Gypsies, Hispanics, Nazis, Palestinians, Catholics, the Romans, Egyptians, the Visigoths, people from certain parts of New Jersey, Vikings, the Polish, Algerian youths, 16th-century Dutchmen, most Christians, Persians, Martians, Apaches, Spaniards, (British) Columbians, the British, Israelis, Somalians, those assholes who killed Gandhi, and the North Irishmen. Also Greeks and Turks; almost forgot about them.

Our well-warranted fears notwithstanding, we decided after a recent incident that it was time to see more of the world. Not quite sure where to start, we settled on Japan, as in the past we have enjoyed said country’s delicious noodles, sushi, and pornographic movies with the nasty parts blurred out (as G-d intended). Like the Chinese of Old, we hoped the Land of the Rising Sun would serve as a stepping stone to further worldly conquests.

In terms of trip planning, we decided to do a classic “Axis of Greatness” tour, booking Lufthansa First Class from New York to Osaka (via Frankfurt), with a return flight from Tokyo to Chicago on Japan Airlines. We still aren’t quite sure how we got from Osaka to Tokyo; we initially thought they were the same place. Perhaps we will figure that out as we dive back into our pictures for this report.


Planes at JFK. Some people swear by DO&CO, but we’ve never tried that Business Class garbage.

Needless to say, we were a bit under the influence when we booked our trip and throughout its entirety, so we can’t remember much about the booking process, other than the surliness of several phone agents. In any case, we’ll assume we used 70,000 United miles for the outbound and 62,500 American miles for the return. So, a mere drop in the metaphorical champagne bucket that is our actual swimming pool full of miles, points and champagne.

Stay tuned for Part Two, in which we will detail the trials and tribulations faced and overcome while visiting Lufthansa’s “First Class” lounge at JFK. Auf Wiedersehen!