AA says worry, JAL says don't

Old May 25th, 2004, 05:43 PM
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AA says worry, JAL says don't

Thought my flight itinerary for tomorrow was set, but had phone messages from both AA and JAL waiting for me when I got home tonight.

Tomorrow's flight JL 5 from JFK to NRT is delayed three hours, departing at 4:40 PM and it doesn't arrive until an hour after my connecting flight to Sapporo (CTS). The NRT - CTS flight was a second FF award, the first leg of an open jaw with return from CTS to Hiroshima.

Good thing I booked both tickets on the same itinerary. Because if the missed connection, JAL is going to put me up in a hotel overnight in Tokyo and put me on the first flight from Haneda to Sapporo.

AA doesn't know about the Haneda flight that JAL has promised but they saw that the connection in Tokyo on the 27th would be missed. They rescheduled it for the 28th but warned me that if I don't show up for it (at 6:30 PM) that I would lose my reservation from CTS to Hiroshima.

JAL tells me not to worry about it that they will take care of me. I think I actually believe that, the way the agent said it. I called AA four times and JL three times. The first JAL agent was such a sweetypie it was hard to stay pxxsed off.

AA wanted to send me to ORD to connect to JAL. Was originally going to fly into JFK from D.C., but will now go to LGA three hours later and then change airports. I now realize that the ORD to NRT flight would get me there earlier than the original schedule from JFK and would easily make the Sapporo connection on the 27th. But, I have been looking forward to that Skysleeper Solo seat for a couple of months now and will be hitch hiking to JFK if I have to.

So, the fun has already started and I haven't begun packing.
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Old May 25th, 2004, 07:41 PM
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As I have been reading about Japan hotels and sights tonight I wondered about your trip- thought you'd be packing and humming a song (Bye Bye Cicadas, or something along those lines). All your intricate planning, and now this, right? Can't it just go according to plan for once? How dare they go and change it all and mess it up- don't they know the modified serenity parayer? Well, now you have to make a new plan. I would also want to do the same thing re keeping the same JAL flight which is now 3 hrs later. I'd want that bed w/the pajamas and the goggles too. But one thing is confusing to me- if you take the JAL early flight from Haneda to Sapporo and hence miss the AA flight that AA has rebooked for you at 6 p.m. (and the start of your open jaw), how is JAL going to "take care of you" if AA is going to cancel your flight from CTS to Hiroshima as a result? Has JAL committed to getting you from CTS to Hiroshima as well? And will AA cancel any more of your flights if you don't show for those? Is it worth it to take that JAL flight to Sapporo and get there earlier, or can you stand to wait around til 6 p.m. for AA. I'd want to be sure I had a flight to Hiroshima- you have one on AA, and I don't see a firm commitment from JAL to give you that. Will you give up the time waiting for the AA flight to CTS or just pay for you rown extra flight to CTS AND Hiroshima? Maybe that expense is worth the time saved? I dunno.
Sorry this is happening. But you can stay even, keep your cool, and figure it out. Once you get past this little kink, I hope the rest of the trip will go without another huge hitch. But I wouldn't bet on it really. If we wanted an easy three weeks, we'd be going to some all inclusive beach resort (god, i can't stand those places, and I've never even been to one- same thing for cruises for me) or something else that is easy w/very little potential for hassles (but not as rewarding), right? You are an excellent traveler from what I can see, willing to take the time to plan and execute. For me, a big part of the reward is getting through these little hassles and coming out on the other side (I keep telling myself that as I am planning for my own trip and wonder 10 different ways every day how I'll be able to do it without stressing, and just enjoy myself in the process). I'd just make sure I have that flight to Hiroshima-- I think that is the concern unless I am reading your message incorrectly.
It's never perfect, is it. But it can and will be very very good anyway.
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Old May 25th, 2004, 08:48 PM
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The flights from NRT to CTS to HIJ are an AA FF award ticketed by AA but on JAL. HND to CTS is a make-up ticket issued by JAL. AA says if I don't fly with the NRT - CTS ticket or get it reissued by AA then CTS-HIJ res gets cancelled. So, yes you did understand: the concern is the flight to Hiroshima flight. JAL says not to worry. Thing is, my ticket says CTS to Matsumoto but res is for HIJ. Anyway, it will work out.

Actually, I thought my CTS to HIJ reservation was on the 1st at 9AM, not the 31st. Lost track of the last plan! I got that res (with a 35 minute connection at HND!) because the nonstop was not available. Now it is.

Thanks for all the kind words. You are right, it will be very good.

Have a good trip with your daughter!
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Old May 25th, 2004, 11:09 PM
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Skysleeper Solo seats are installed on the ORD planes. JAL is installing the seats on all their long haul planes. I believe that LAX is next.

Have a great trip!
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Old May 26th, 2004, 01:22 AM
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Could the solution be that easy? But why wouldn't AA have told him that the ORD flights also have the bedseats. Maybe it just didn't come out in the conversation.
Now I wonder how it will turn out. Will he rush to change the seat this a.m. to AA ORD to connect w/JAL, or will he cont. w/the plan as above. I haven't watched that show "Airline" but this sounds like what I imagine it is like.
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Old May 26th, 2004, 02:34 AM
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No changes, no worries. Arrigato gozaimasu, sayonara!
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Old May 26th, 2004, 02:55 AM
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I could understand his concern. The Skysleeper suites are fabulous, and you want to make sure you get them when spending all the money/miles, but it's never a guarantee till the entire fleet gets the change over. There have been reports of flights out of New York that did not have the suites because of equipment change at the last minute.

Anyway, JAL is saying that flights to/from NRT - ORD or JFK are suppose to have the new suites at this time. LAX is next in line.
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Old May 26th, 2004, 03:30 AM
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He's off to the races. Guess we have to wait for the trip report to find out what happens and (hopefully) hear about the bedseats.
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Old May 26th, 2004, 04:22 PM
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BTW, I just realized you used gazaimasu after the arrigato. Not neccessary to use the formality w/me, but it's a nice touch. See, I am learning- those non-stop Learn Japanese CDs in the car must be working.
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Old May 26th, 2004, 09:21 PM
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Hai.....Domo..
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Old May 30th, 2004, 05:32 PM
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Basically,?@JAL was right, I think. I am in Hakodate this rainy Monday morning about to catch the Super Hokuto Lex to the Sapporo airport.

The flight over was wonderful. The meal (Japanese) was excellent. JAL gave me a ticket on the hotel bus to the New Takanawa Hotel in Shinagawa, a night at the hotel, 4000 yen voucher for dinner 2000 yen voucher for breakfast, night at the hotel, 400 yen for the train from Shinagawa to Haneda.
Saturday, because it was convenient, I confirmed my res for today with JAL at the airport. Left my main bag at the JR station at the airport and went to Noboribetsu. Got confused at Toyako and just went on to Hakodate.

The answer to a question I posted here or on the asia board - yes you can connect from a JAL flight into CTS to the JR train in less than 23 minutes (more like 15 minutes).

Missing the flight from Narita was a big pain, but it was an experience. May 27 will be rememered as a day that I ate Japanese food almost continuously and for free. Oh yeah, and a voucher for $8.50 at JFK which I used to buy sushi. The flight was delayed on the 25th by a sick passenger. Three hours into the flight they had to turn around. That caused the 3 hour delay on the 26th. JAL FC Lounge at JFK was no great shakes, but very good food.

I slept 4 or 5 hours on the flight over, better sleep than in Shinagawa. On my first trip to Japan, the jet lag got me on the 2nd day after arrival. Like a hammer on the head. Not so, this time. Waking up at 330 AM first couple of days. Probably the FC flight, but I also think that I adjust better since I quit smoking a year or so ago.
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Old May 31st, 2004, 04:42 PM
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Hello mrwunrfl, good to hear from you. I am finding it hard to follow your email route (probably because i am tired form my own travel this weekend, too tired to get the maps out) but it sounds like it has all worked out and you had a good full stomach on top of it all. Who knows, maybe you will cross paths w/Bigfeat over there- if you see anyone asking if vegetarian food is served, ask if it is him. I crossed paths w/a fodorite who was on the same tour at the Tenement Museum w/mydaughter and me this weekend. We had not planned it at all but I saw a man w/a Houston sweatshirt and I knew they were from Houston and were going to NY from her posts, so I chanced it and went up to them, and by golly it was them. Small world.
Keep those notes going for the trip report.
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