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Earlier this year, ANA pledged to lower fuel surcharges in response to reduced oil prices, and it began implementing these changes back in March. As TPG Points & Miles Contributor Richard Kerr explains, things are looking even better now.

In March we looked at the level of carrier-imposed surcharges on ANA award tickets. It was interesting to see that taxes and fees appeared to be lower, even prior to ANA’s self-imposed April 1 deadline for lowering fuel surcharges based on the price of oil from December through January.

A month has passed since the implementation date, so I went back to ANA’s award search tool to try and determine if the surcharges have been lowered even further. Today, let’s look at the current cost in miles and the carrier-imposed surcharges of several ANA award ticket routings.

Flights on ANA Metal

The award chart for ANA-operated flights is dependent on the dates you fly and whether they fall into low, regular or high season. From my searches, I found the season you fly in only impacts the miles required, not a change in the carrier-imposed surcharges. However, it now looks like departing from a region other than Japan doesn’t change the amount of surcharges, either — when I searched in March, I found lower charges for flights originating outside of this country.

Here’s a chart showing samplings of taxes and fees for ANA-operated flights between all regions where the airline flies. All prices shown are for round-trip redemptions.

Origin-Destination Economy Business First Taxes and Fees
Japan-North America 40,000-55,000 75,000-90,000 150,000-165,000 $85.01
Japan-Hawaii 35,000-43,000 60,000-68,000 $85.01
Japan-Asia 1 17,000-23,000 35,000-43,000 $40.84
Japan – Asia 2 30,000-38,000 55,000-63,000 105,000-114,000 $44.99
Japan-South Korea 12,000-18,000 25,000-33,000 $51.35
Japan-Europe 45,000-60,000 80,000-95,000 165,000-180,000 $86.60 (LHR $192)
Japan-Oceania 37,000-50,000 65,000-80,000 $115.33

Prices are consistent with most itineraries in the same regions, with the UK’s passenger service charge being the most obvious increase in pricing when looking at Japan-Europe routings.

ANA only charges $4 for a fuel surcharge on NRT-LHR routings.
ANA only asks $4 for a fuel surcharge on NRT-LHR routings.

Flights on Star Alliance/Other Partners

The award chart for ANA partners is region-based, with fixed prices regardless of the flying dates. For regions in which ANA operates, surcharges can be less or more than flying ANA metal depending on the route and the partner you fly.

Here’s a chart with samplings of current taxes and fees and the miles required for flights on ANA partners. Again, all prices are for round-trip redemptions.

Origin-Destination Economy Business First Taxes and Fees
Japan-North America 50,000 85,000 150,000 $65.21
Hawaii-Japan 40,000 65,000 120,000 $45.41
Japan-Asia 1 20,000 40,000 60,000 $45.20
Japan-Europe 55,000 90,000 165,000 $131.74
Japan-Oceania 40,000 75,000 135,000 $70.37
North America-Africa/Middle East 65,000 104,000 195,000 $65-$660
North America-Europe 55,000 88,000 165,000 $400-$661
North America – South America 55,000 88,000 165,000 $93.88
Intra-North America 30,000 55,000 90,000 $11.20
Intra-Asia 1 20,000 40,000 60,000 $35.32
Intra-Europe 30,000 55,000 90,000 $184.65
Intra-Africa/Middle East 30,000 55,000 90,000 $174-$321

The region worth noting is Africa/Middle East. Depending on the partner you fly, the amount of carrier-imposed surcharges varies wildly. Stick with Etihad, which does not pass along any fuel surcharges to ANA award tickets, though these flights are not bookable on ANA.co.jp.

A mid haul DXB-CAI nonstop incurs significant fuel surcharges on Air Egypt.
A medium-haul DXB-CAI nonstop incurs significant fuel surcharges on Air Egypt.

There are some excellent deals as far as miles required for award tickets — e.g., North America to Europe round-trip in business for just 88,000 miles, but the surcharges required are pretty steep. It appears the fuel surcharges for Star Alliance-operated flights have not been lowered to the same degree as ANA-operated flights.

The Verdict Is Clear

I believe ANA has honored its commitment to the fullest extent and has based fuel surcharges on the average cost of oil. The charges for ANA-operated flights are now much more tolerable compared to what the program offered even in March. For Star Alliance-operated flights, the surcharges can still be out of hand in some regions and with some partners. Non-Star Alliance partners Etihad, TAM and Hawaiian still do not incur fuel surcharges on award tickets, while Virgin Atlantic and Garuda Indonesia do incur significant carrier-imposed surcharges.

The redemptions for many ANA long-haul routes represent great value and should make you strongly consider the program when trying to utilize your Amex Membership Reward points or Starpoints, as they’re both transfer partners of ANA’s Mileage Club Program.

Are you more likely to book an ANA award now that fuel surcharges are lower?

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