I have not been paid by any entity in any way (financially, benefits) to write the following post. This is from a trip that occurred in December 2019. Any airline, lounge, and/or loyalty program policies may have changed since then. All travel occurred prior to COVID-19; wear your mask, stay safe, and consult your national health authority for guidance on traveling.
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HRL-IAH | United Club IAH Terminal C North | United Polaris Lounge IAH | IAH-NRT | United Club NRT | NRT-PEK | Air China Transit Lounge PEK Terminal C | PEK-PVG | Air China Premium Lounge PVG | PVG-SFO | SFO-IAH
After a stop at the United Club NRT, we start off with a lengthy visit to the ANA Lounge, where I got some late night bites to keep me fueled for the last segment of my trip for the day.
I also took some quick snaps of the restroom, but unfortunately all my other pictures of the lounge have disappeared… Very disappointing 🙁
After having my flight delayed, they finally called us up and I made my way to the gate, where I would board a bus during a cold Tokyo night to board ANA’s A320neo that would carry us to Beijing.
Airline: ANA Air Nippon Airways
Aircraft: Airbus A320neo
Route: Tokyo (NRT) – Beijing (PEK)
Flight Time: 4h25m
When I booked this ticket with United, I had no idea what to expect on a narrow-body ANA. I had previously flown their B787s, but never had a chance to fly on their narrow-body fleet. Well that all changed when we rolled up to the plane, and then I noticed the abnormally large A320 engines – and then it hit me: we were flying a new A320neo! Just my luck!
I will say, I airstairs provide the opportunity to get some amazing pictures of your plane, but also are a pain to board through, especially if you are injured or have a disability. I appreciate the new boarding ramps that United has implemented for their regional jets in Houston, which definitely beat any airstairs.
As I finally got inside the cabin, I managed to snap a pic of the first class cabin. This version of ANA’s A320neo has 8 recliner-style first class seats, which provide 127 cm of pitch or about 50 inches, with footrests and adjustable headrests, which must make it a very comfortable ride on these short to medium-haul flights.
Boarding was slow and chaotic, with no order or process; it was just get on the plane and go! Which, considering the temperature outside, I was fine with, so long as I was inside the plane!
I finally got to my seat: 5k. I was unable to snap a pic, but I did get to photograph the amazing view!
ANA’s A320neo is powered by Pratt & Whitney’s PurePower PW1100G-JM engines, with about 27,000 pounds of thrust each! I then took a few pics of the seating area, to check out everything on offer.
First thing’s first: the legroom; it was tight. I am 6’1, and could not stretch my legs at all, so I had to keep one folded over the other throughout most of the flight. I would have appreciated a cutout if possible, but you work with what you got, and in this case I didn’t get to choose my seat.
Below the seats, you could find an outlet to charge your electronic devices, and even better was the USB outlet. This was a very welcome surprise since my phone was dying.
Up next is the entertainment center, which comes in the form of a sleek looking touchscreen monitor. Here you can find not only entertainment options, but also a flight attendant call button and reading light button. However, the entertainment on offer was disappointing, so I recommend downloading your own media before taking this flight!
After boarding completed, we pushed back and taxied out to the runway for takeoff. The only strange thing I noticed was that the cabin lights remained on during takeoff, which is not done in the US. Even stranger, and more frustratingly, the lights were kept on the whole flight. Which occurred at night. I was unhappy with that.
After takeoff, the flight attendants began a wet towel wipe, drink service, and a near inedible snack mix (for my palette), followed by a meal service.
What I will always appreciate about some foreign airlines: even in coach, they’ll provide a decent meal.
The meal looked horrendous, but was actually better than it’s presentation.
The options were either chicken or beef, and I went with the stewed beef with rice omelet. This was served with two starters: smoked salmon with cream cheese and crackers, as well as an iceberg lettuce salad, with a dinner roll.
What really shocked me was actual silverware being provided! Seemed like a very nice touch for an economy dinner service. I’m not complaining by any means, I’m just impressed.
Dessert was a rock solid cup of Haagen-Dazs ice cream that must’ve been pulled out of the very back of the freezer. It was absolutely frozen solid. Still delicious!
Following the service, I was sure that the cabin crew would turn off the lights, allowing the passengers an opportunity to sleep, right? WRONG. Those lights stayed on. the. whole. flight. I’m sure I was more unhappy about it because I had just flown 13 hours across the Pacific, which you can read all about here!
Anyways, following more hours of trying to play the pointless games on the entertainment center, we finally began our descent into Beijing,
This was a very nice flight, and I am very glad I get to add another ANA experience to my belt, however there were a few things I believe could’ve been better…ok maybe just one: the lights.
Quite frankly, it was a very nice flight with a friendly cabin crew, a nice dinner, and no major issues. If you are a taller and/or wider individual, I would recommend selecting seats that are not in the bulkhead; these seats are narrower due to the tray-table and video monitor being in the sides, and well there is limited legroom due to the bulkhead.
What are your thoughts? Let me know in the comment section below! Thanks for reading! Hope you enjoyed it, follow us on our social media accounts located in the sidebar, and please share share share!
As always, remember to keep living life one trip at a time!