After flying-in with Virgin Australia and spending less than 48 hours in Japan, it was time to continue on to the next leg of this trip which would take me to United States. For this part of my trip, I flew Japan Airlines First Class from Tokyo to Dallas Fort Worth.
My flight was scheduled to depart Tokyo at 10:55 am, but I got to the airport by 7:45 so I could spend some time at Japan Airlines First Class Lounge.
JAL First Class Lounge Location
Japan Airlines First Class Lounge at Tokyo (Haneda) airport is located in Terminal 3. Once you have cleared security and immigration, turn left and follow the signs directing you to Airline Lounges. Hop on the escalator and as you come off the escalator on the top, the lounge is to your right.
A quick scan of my Boarding Pass and I was warmly welcomed in.
JAL First Class Lounge Access Rules
Unlike some of the other oneworld alliance members such as Qatar Airways and British Airways who heavily restrict access to their First Class Lounge, Japan Airlines access rules are far more generous.
The following passengers get complimentary access to JAL First Class Lounge :
- Passengers flying First Class with Japan Airlines or other oneworld carriers. They can also bring 1 guest into the lounge with them.
- Passengers with oneworld Emerald status flying any oneworld airline in any class. They can also bring 1 guest into the lounge with them.
- JAL elites such as JMB Diamond and JGC Premier members flying JAL in any class. They can also bring 1 guest into the lounge with them.
JAL First Class Lounge
JAL First Class Lounge is massive and the facility is spread over two levels. The main entrance is via Level 4 and then there is another section on Level 5.
As you enter and walk through the corridor to get to the main part of the lounge, the decorative Japanese folding screens on either side immediately catch your attention.
Just how gorgeous is that walkway 🤩
You will also notice a number of private booths marked Telephone on either side. This space is meant to minimise noise levels in the lounge, but at the same time allow patrons to make any phone calls if they needed to.
From this point on, the lounge splits into 2 sections. There is a section marked JAL’s Table to the right and another one called JAL’s Salon on the left which is on Level 5.
JAL’s Table is essentially one massive hall with end to end seating. There’s no physical separation between the dining and the sitting area.
Tucked on the left, there is a small area with some half a dozen individual pods. This is where you would want to park yourself if you were travelling for business and wanted a quite space to get work done.
The prized seats of-course are by the floor-to-ceiling glass windows offering uninterrupted views of the apron and the planes. I don’t consider myself an avgeek but there is something special about sitting and watching as some planes pull-up to the Gates while others depart.
Towards the right, and at the end of the hallway there is a separate area dubbed Red Suite.
Once inside, you will notice that this area has been further divided into four separate spaces. There’s the Library;
and the Retreat;
Away from the cacophony of the main section of the lounge, this area has been designed to be distinctively and purposely different, and to offer the discerning First Class traveller a premium and peaceful sanctuary before they jump on their flights.
The central section of JAL’s Table is also where you will find most of the dining. There are two long tables adjacent to the wall, one of them is akin to a kitchen where they prepare all the food while the other one has all sorts of drinks lined-up which patrons can help themselves too.
In terms of drinks, there was wine, vodka, whiskey, champagne and beer.
There’s no buffet which I was pleased about, but then I noticed that you had to order food via the QR codes menu stuck on each of the tables. Yikes…
Someone tell Japan Airlines it is 2023 and we no longer need to be reminded of the times we have left behind. Really, it’s annoying to see this relic from Covid-times being given an extended lease of life in a First Class Lounge.
As I had already had breakfast at the hotel, I wasn’t hungry. Besides, I also wanted to save my appetite for the onboard dining. But just to get an idea of the quality of the dishes on offer I ordered a sushi tasting plate, a chicken dish and granola which were delivered to the table within 5 minutes.
Everything I tasted was nice, but not exceptional. I then took the lift up to Level 5 to check out the JAL’ Salon.
As you get off the lift, you will see a number of office style cubicles with massage chairs. More on this a little later.
There’s a small sitting area next to the massage section, and then there is even more seating by the wall-windows looking out towards the runway. Lockers are available should lounge patrons wish to store any personal items.
JAL’s Salon is located past this point and to the right.
As you come in, there is a gorgeous looking bar to the left and a self-serve drinks stand a few metres down.
Apart from this, the rest of the area is dedicated to a bit of R & R. There’s all sorts of seating, from boardroom-style long table to rows of chairs, and semi-private booths by the wall. I will let the pictures speak for themselves.
While you get runway views from JAL’s Salon, I thought they weren’t as good as those from Lvl 4.
JAL First Class Lounge Amenities
As I alluded to earlier, patrons can help themselves to complimentary massage on Level 5. I didn’t notice any staff members here, so if you wanted to get a massage just jump on one of the chairs and play around with the controls.
There are six shower suites located on Level 4 near the entrance. However, you cannot just show-up expecting to take a shower. Bookings are essential and can be made via the QR code found on each table or with the reception staff.
There may be wait-times on occasions, although it didn’t look like there were too many people around when I visited the facility. The little reception desk outside the shower suites was unattended.
Male and Female Toilets can be found on both levels, and they were well maintained.
Lastly, free and fast wifi is available through out the lounge.
The JAL First Class Lounge at Tokyo (Haneda) is a large, well maintained facility. There are certain parts of the lounge such as the Red Suite which is tastefully done, I also loved the walkway framed by decorative Japanese folding screens leading to JAL’s Table. But on the whole, I didn’t find the facility to be too impressive.
There’s nothing particularly bad I can speak-off, and its a pleasant enough space to spend some time before you fly away. The food and drinks are good too.
All that said, the lounge doesn’t offer personalised service, it doesn’t generate the buzz like some of the other First Class Lounges such as the Qantas First Lounge in Sydney and Singapore, or the Al-Safwa First Lounge in Doha do.
When I visit a First Class Lounge, I want to experience that giddy feeling of stepping inside somewhere exciting, somewhere little out of the ordinary, somewhere slightly over the top. I didn’t get that at the JAL First Lounge at Tokyo (Haneda).
Have you visited the JAL First Class Lounge at Tokyo (Haneda) Airport? Leave a comment below.