gusnyc
Posts: 139
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Traveling To Japan Via Kansai. What To Expect?

Sun Feb 26, 2006 1:48 pm

Hi Everybody,

I am very excited because as a birthday present I got a trip to Japan! I will take a flight from NYC to ORD and from there to Kansai.

I've never been in Japan, and this (believe it or not) will be my first time in a 777. I will be fliying United (economy plus).

I have a couple of questions:

1- What should I expect from the flight? This will be the longest trip ever for me. What about those 777, the service in United?

2- Any suggestions about things to do related to aviation in Japan? I am still organizing the trip (I have a month to do so) and I can go anywhere. If you have other suggestions (not related to aviation)... well, those are welcomed too.

Thanks for your answers!

Gus
 
satx
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RE: Traveling To Japan Via Kansai. What To Expect?

Sun Feb 26, 2006 2:00 pm

Quoting GusNYC (Thread starter):
1- What should I expect from the flight? This will be the longest trip ever for me. What about those 777, the service in United?

1. 777 is louder than 747 or 767 (hard to sleep)
2. UA has primitive PTV in 777 intl. Y
3. Free booze in Y on trans-pac intl. (still?)
4. Food is crap in Y (and Y+)
5. Seat pitch will be good in Y+

Quoting GusNYC (Thread starter):
2- Any suggestions about things to do related to aviation in Japan?

Japan still has observation decks at their major airports! There are many things to do in Japan, so long as you bring plenty of yen. Check out frommers.com to take a look and wait for a few expats to chime in on here.
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ikramerica
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RE: Traveling To Japan Via Kansai. What To Expect?

Sun Feb 26, 2006 2:16 pm

As an english speaker you should seriously consider booking a few day tours with an english speaking guide. I took some sunrise (company name) tours when there, and basically they collect you from where you are staying, take you to various historical sites for 1/2 or whole days on various buses, provide a meal, and give you lots of info in english you won't be able to get on your own. nights are still free, as are any days you don't book a tour.

I saw Nara/Kyoto on one tour (mostly temples and shrines + imperial palace), and Mt. Fuji and surrounding sites on another tour.
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FutureFO
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RE: Traveling To Japan Via Kansai. What To Expect?

Sun Feb 26, 2006 2:24 pm

Alcohol I believe is now being charged for on UA Y cabin. The 777 is not louder than the 767/747. I have no problem sleeping on the flight. KIX is an awesome airport. It is a bit of a bus ride to Osake CBD. ITM is awesome, great spotting deck and pretty much free roam over the top. Great to get the 744D,772/3 on Domestic runs.


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filejw
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RE: Traveling To Japan Via Kansai. What To Expect?

Sun Feb 26, 2006 2:36 pm

Seeing you have not done much long haul please remember to get up to walk around and stretch. . drink plenty of water and easy on the alcohol. You will feel better when you get there and reduce the risk of DVT
 
bmczech
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RE: Traveling To Japan Via Kansai. What To Expect?

Sun Feb 26, 2006 2:43 pm

I had 3 hours at Kansai this past monday returning on American 124 to DFW. The flight was great, but KIX is very weak on services such as food and bars (in fact I couldn't find a bar). I've done KIX 3 times now and its time to stick with NRT next time. Flew business on AA 124 and it was very nice.
 
spacecadet
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RE: Traveling To Japan Via Kansai. What To Expect?

Sun Feb 26, 2006 3:50 pm

Was your birthday present a pre-booked flight or did you choose United? If you can, I would seriously consider re-booking with ANA or JAL. Their service is far, far superior to any US airline (I've flown them all to Japan), and it will give you a little taste of Japan even before you get there.

I have never flown a 777, though - when I last flew UA and NWA to Japan, it was on 747's. ANA was also using 747's last time I went. JAL still uses 747's. My wife flew a 777 on AA last time she went, and she said it would be the last time she ever flew American - and part of that seemed to be the plane (she said the seats were narrower than what she remembers flying on ANA 747's). I suppose it depends on how UA has theirs configured. Economy plus shouldn't be too bad, though.

As for what to expect... expect a long, boring flight. You're somewhat lucky in that you're making a stop - personally, I'm a nervous flier so I prefer non-stops, but if I was a normal person I'd probably prefer a stop on a long trip like this. It won't seem like you're just hanging in the air forever. But still, I agree with the previous poster that said to make sure to get up and walk around whenever you can. Also, whenever you get the chance, make sure you accept whatever drinks UA offers you - even if you're not thirsty. They didn't do this on my last UA flight to Japan (one reason I no longer fly UA) but usually most airlines (including UA) will walk around the cabin every once in a while with water or tea or whatever. Always take whatever they offer. It's a health issue on a long flight like this (helps prevent deep vein thrombosis), which is why they do it - reduces their liability if you get a clot. It will also produce the side effect that you'll need to use the bathroom more often, which will force you to get up and walk around.

Ask for an aisle seat if you don't have your seating assignment already. You don't want to be stuck in a window seat for 12+ hours. On a trans-pacific flight, it's not about the view - it's about being able to stretch your legs out and get up whenever you want.

[Edited 2006-02-26 07:52:43]
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satx
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RE: Traveling To Japan Via Kansai. What To Expect?

Sun Feb 26, 2006 6:43 pm

Quoting FutureFO (Reply 3):
Alcohol I believe is now being charged for on UA Y cabin.

Still free on transpac flights in Y.

http://www.united.com/page/article/0,6722,51500,00.html

Quoting FutureFO (Reply 3):
The 777 is not louder than the 767/747.

I've only flown the 772, and only seven or eight times, but it was among the loudest jet aircraft I've ever flown (in Y at least).

Quoting Spacecadet (Reply 6):
Was your birthday present a pre-booked flight or did you choose United? If you can, I would seriously consider re-booking with ANA or JAL.

Although I would agree that JL and NH offer superior in-flight service to UA, it doesn't sound like the thread starter is still at the stage of picking an airline. On the plus side, UA probably gives out a real dosage of aspirin instead of those miniscule little child-strength doses you get on Japanese airlines.  Wink
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gusnyc
Posts: 139
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RE: Traveling To Japan Via Kansai. What To Expect?

Mon Feb 27, 2006 12:32 am

Hey! Thanks for your answers!

My longest fights so far were from Argentina/Chile to NYC. But those were during the night. I fall asleep a few hours and they don't seem to be that long.

On the other hand, I went to Paris from NYC and I had some trouble with jet lag. Is there anything I could do (during the flight) to minimize the effects?

The tickets are bought, I can't change them. The stop is in ORD (from JFK)

Any other suggestions?

Gus
 
boeingfanyyz
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RE: Traveling To Japan Via Kansai. What To Expect?

Mon Feb 27, 2006 1:25 am

Quoting GusNYC (Thread starter):
What should I expect from the flight?

You should expect it to be very long!  wink 

Quoting GusNYC (Thread starter):
I've never been in Japan, and this (believe it or not) will be my first time in a 777. I will be fliying United (economy plus).

It will be a good time, escpecially for the first time.

Perhaps you should consider a TR.

Cheers,
Boeingfanyyz  airplane 
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JayinKitsap
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RE: Traveling To Japan Via Kansai. What To Expect?

Mon Feb 27, 2006 2:12 am

My son got married in Osaka last November, so did a 2 week tour with a group of 10 around Osaka & Kyoto. Coupled with my previous trips, I recommend:

Your bag needs wheels and your carryon should be a daypack if you are changing spots often. I loved my hardside, it was big enough to put my carryon inside.

Jetlag was worse coming back, sleep as much as you can on the flight, drink lots of fluids, vitamins and aspirin help.

Most Japanese ATM's don't take US cards. In Osaka, the Post Office has good money exchange and ATM's. Outside of that there are like 6 ATM's in the city that take US cards. One is at Universal Studio, one is in the shopping area below Osaka Station. My card had the limit of $ 300 / day. Credit cards work well, but Japan is much more a cash society.

In Osaka, Osaka-Joe castle and their Peace Museum are both very cool. Not many other tourist things there. The Budda at Nara is a must see. The YMCA has english guides for both Nara and Kyoto.

Kyoto- so many temples - Kiyomizu - dera, Nanzenji, and the walk of philosophy is amazing on the east side, on the west Ryon-ji, the garden to the north, and the temple north of that were awesome. Don't bother with the imperial palace.

Down by Kobe is Himiji Castle, really cool. By Hiroshima - the island of Myojima is a cool national park type of area.

The food at the storefront restaurants is amazingly good. In Kyoto there was a conveyor sushi place that the bill per person for sushi & beer was like $12.

I was more amazed with the trains there than the airports. The Lonely Planet guide I thought was best.

[Edited 2006-02-26 18:13:43]
 
Door5Right
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RE: Traveling To Japan Via Kansai. What To Expect?

Mon Feb 27, 2006 2:32 am

Take plenty of time to explore KIX. It's a great airport. DO NOT miss going to the Observation Hall and open terrace. It's a great place to spot and has a cafe, restaurant, shop, open terrace and is only a few mins from the Terminal Building by bus (small charge for bus)

http://www2s.biglobe.ne.jp/~ito-nori/spot/spot_kix.htm
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MDorBust
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RE: Traveling To Japan Via Kansai. What To Expect?

Tue Feb 28, 2006 1:08 pm

The true secret to being a tourist in Japan... Get a JR rail pass!!!
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satx
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RE: Traveling To Japan Via Kansai. What To Expect?

Tue Feb 28, 2006 3:05 pm

Quoting GusNYC (Reply 8):
Is there anything I could do (during the flight) to minimize the effects?

I've taken back-to-back flights totaling thirty hours (and more) one way on multiple occasions, and so I have some ideas for how to handle this. They may not work for everyone, and some people say they're not healthy, but they've worked for me time and again.

On your first trip of such length it may not be possible to prevent jetlag entirely. It wasn't until my second long-haul trip that I started to get the hang of it.

1. Get on you destination's time the day before you leave
2. Keep to this time as much as possible during your flights
3. Use caffeine, alcohol, meds, plugs, & masks as necessary
4. Repeat on the return trip

Admittedly it's not easy to keep to your destination's time, but if you're truly serious about it you can spend thirty hours on planes and still arrive ready to tackle the day wherever and whenever you arrive. My first long-haul trip left me bewildered and exhausted, but these days it's much less of an issue.

Quoting MDorBust (Reply 12):
The true secret to being a tourist in Japan... Get a JR rail pass!

It's too bad the Japan Rail Pass is still not valid for any seats on the Nozomi trains. As the Nozomi is becoming more common while alternative services are being retired, the current rail pass seems to be losing some of its former shine.
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TimePilot
Posts: 290
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RE: Traveling To Japan Via Kansai. What To Expect?

Thu Mar 02, 2006 10:15 am

I second what Spacecadet said about looking into JAL or ANA. Far superior service.

Overall though, HAVE FUN!!  wave 

*ahem* Don't forget to post a Trip Report when you get back *ahem*

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