This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Japan bids farewell to United’s Boeing 747 fleet as the airline operated its last scheduled 747 flight from Tokyo Narita (NRT) to San Francisco (SFO) yesterday afternoon. Flight 838, operated by one of the carrier’s 15 747-400 aircraft, took to the Japanese skies for one last time at 4:55pm JST (Japan Standard Time) and arrived in San Francisco at 9:35am PST.

United last 747 Japan

This marks the end of 34 years of United flying the jumbo jet to the Land of the Rising Sun — the majority of the carrier’s flights between US and Japan were operated by the 747 fleet since the inaugural flight between Seattle (SEA) and NRT. As the aircraft prepared for departure, ground crew gathered around with placards and signs in hand to say goodbye to the Queen of the Skies.

United 747 Japan Farewell

United 837, departing daily from San Francisco at 11:45am and arriving at Narita Airport in Tokyo at 2:35pm the next day, will now be served by the airline’s flagship Boeing 777-300ER, which features the latest Polaris Business class seats. The return flight, numbered as United 838, departs Narita at 5:10pm and arrives back in San Francisco at 10:55am.

United 777-300ER 77W Inaugural

For now, United 747s are still flying between San Francisco and Taipei (TPE), Beijing (PEK), Shanghai (PVG), Seoul Incheon (ICN), Frankfurt (FRA) and London Heathrow (LHR). Taipei will transition to 777-300ER service from August 1, with the other routes slowly transitioning to other aircraft types by the end of this year. United just took delivery of its 10th 777-300ER, so the airline appears to be on track to retire all 747s by the end of the year.

The aging 747 fleet burns up to 20% more fuel per seat than the 777-300ERs, and incurs higher maintenance cost. As aircraft technology improves, it’s no doubt that the airline is turning to the Boeing 787 Dreamliner and 777-300ER to improve overall fleet efficiency and reliability.

Images courtesy of United.

The Business Platinum® Card from American Express

Aside from the 75,000 points welcome bonus, Amex recently made huge improvements to the Business Platinum Card, including the fact that you will now earn 50% more points on purchases of $5,000 or more, earn 5x on flights and eligible hotels at and cardholders will receive a $200 airline fee credit each year.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Welcome Offer: Earn up to 75,000 Membership Rewards® points.
  • Earn 50,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $10,000 and an extra 25,000 points after you spend an additional $10,000 all on qualifying purchases within your first 3 months of Card Membership.
  • Get 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights and prepaid hotels on
  • Get 50% more Membership Rewards® points. That's 1.5 points per dollar, on each eligible purchase of $5,000 or more. You can get up to 1 million additional points per year.
  • 35% Airline Bonus: Use Membership Rewards® Pay with Points for all or part of a flight with your selected qualifying airline, and you can get 35% of the points back, up to 500,000 bonus points per calendar year.
  • Enroll to get up to $200 in statement credits annually by getting up to $100 semi-annually for U.S. purchases with Dell. Terms apply.
  • Get one year of Platinum Global Access from WeWork. With this membership, you can access 300+ premium, inspiring workspaces in 75+ cities. To get this exclusive offer, enroll between 2/15/2019 and 12/31/2019.
  • Terms Apply
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
See Terms
Recommended Credit
Excellent Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.