Many people think that flying to Japan entails a wildly long flight, and even more wild expenses, but that's not the case! Flights to Japan in recent years have become very reasonable, meaning that it's often cheaper to fly to Japan than many other popular destinations such as Thailand, Vietnam and nearby Asian countries.
A direct flight from the UK to Japan usually takes around 11-12 hours, which is the same time as it takes to get to Thailand. Average prices for these flights can be anywhere from £600 to £5,000 depending on whether you choose to fly Economy or Business class.
Indirect flight routes to Japan are becoming increasingly popular, as they are great value for money and do not take much longer than direct flights. Airlines such as Finnair, Air France and KLM fly from the UK to Japan in around 14 hours, with a short stop-over in their regional hubs in Helsinki, Paris or Amsterdam. Flight prices for these indirect routes can be as little as £409 return.
For details on the various Japan-bound airlines, please see below.
Carriers who fly to Japan
There are three airlines which currently operate direct flights from the UK to Japan. These are: ANA (All Nippon Airways), JAL (Japan Airlines) and BA (British Airways). Information about these carriers and their current flight prices can be found on their respective websites.
There are many different ways and routes to reach Japan from the UK. Some airlines that regularly offer incredibly economical prices on flights to Japan are listed below. Don't be fooled into thinking that flying indirect necessarily involves a lengthy wait - stop-overs are often very short, and sometimes as little as an hour, particularly when changing planes within Europe.
Japan has several hub or first-class airports that handle the bulk of its international flights. Japan’s busiest airports are its two international airports in Tokyo. These are: Haneda Airport (HND, also known as Tokyo International Airport or Tokyo Haneda Airport) and Narita International Airport (NRT, also known as Tokyo Narita Airport).
These are followed by Japan's three central international airports. Two of these are in Osaka: Kansai International Airport (KIX) and Osaka International Airport (ITM, also known as Itami Airport), while Chubu Centrair International Airport (NGO) is in Nagoya. If you are planning a trip focused on destinations in central Japan such as Kyoto, Osaka, Nara, Kobe, Nagoya and Hiroshima, then it may work out better for you to fly into one of these, rather than Tokyo.
Finally, Fukuoka Airport (FUK) is a regional or second-class international airport on Japan’s southern main island of Kyushu. It neatly links Japan by short-haul with many Asian destinations as well as with the UK on a limited number of routes.