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Fares from California and Hawaii to Tokyo for as low as $550 economy and $1,525 business

Oct. 04, 2022
7 min read
Kabukicho red light district, Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan
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Tokyo, a bustling city known for its glimmering streets and rich history, has been closed off to much of the world for the duration of the pandemic.

However, Japan is set to reopen its borders for foreign tourism on Oct. 11, so you’ll want to book your flights to Tokyo as soon as possible.

Flying to Tokyo can be expensive, but this deal discounts economy and business-class fares by as much as 60%. Round-trip economy flights to Tokyo from California and Hawaii start at $550, and round-trip business-class flights from the two states are as low as $1,525. Both fares are a significant steal, so be sure to book quickly.


American Airlines and Zipair Tokyo are the two carriers offering these discounted fares. The deal applies to flights taking place from January through February, with limited availability this November.

A deal like this is rare and isn’t guaranteed to last more than 24 hours, so buy these flight tickets fast.

A 10-hour flight is a lot more snooze-able in first class – see how many points away you are from a cozy, 30,000 foot slumber with the free TPG App!

Deal basics

Airlines: American Airlines and Zipair Tokyo.
Routes: Los Angeles; San Jose, California; and Honolulu to Tokyo.
How to book: Search through Google Flights for your best available dates, then book directly with the airline of your choice.
Travel dates: January through February 2023, with some availability this November.
Book by: ASAP.

Major thanks to Scott’s Cheap Flights for finding this deal. The website's Premium membership costs $49 a year and offers a 14-day trial, along with discounts of up to 90%. Or, sign up for the Elite membership for Premium deals and premium economy, business-class and first-class deals.

Sample flights

While this deal is only for flights departing from California and Hawaii, these fares to Tokyo’s Narita International Airport (NRT) are uncommon and exceptionally low. Business-class fares to Tokyo from Los Angeles and San Jose are also slashed by as much as 60%. All flights are nonstop.

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Here is a short list of flights we’ve highlighted:

  • American: Departs from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), starting at $550.
  • Zipair Tokyo: Departs from Daniel K. Inouye International Airport (HNL), starting at $574.
  • Zipair Tokyo: Departs from Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International Airport (SJC), starting at $575.
  • Zipair Tokyo: Departs from Daniel K. Inouye International Airport (HNL), starting at $1,525 (business class).
  • Zipair Tokyo: Departs from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), starting at $1,589 (business class).
  • Zipair Tokyo: Departs from Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International Airport (SJC), starting at $1,719 (business class).

When booking your flights, we recommend using Google Flights to search for your ideal dates, then booking directly through the website of the airline you choose. Airlines are more dependable in the event of a cancellation, delay or booking change to your flight.

For flights leaving Los Angeles on Feb. 5, Google Flights shows Zipair Tokyo as the cheapest possible option of all available business-class flights. The Zipair Tokyo flight costs $1,589, and the next cheapest available business-class flight is a Singapore Airlines one priced at $4,680.


The only option for a returning flight a week later on Feb.12 is with Zipair Tokyo. It departs from Tokyo at 2:45 p.m.


Google Flights also shows that the $1,589 business-class fare to Tokyo is low, as the least expensive business-class flights to Tokyo are usually anywhere from $1,700 to $1,800. However, it is more typical for such fares to be upward of $4,000, underscoring how exceptional this deal is.


The seats for the outbound flight to Tokyo cost $875 and the returning flight to Los Angeles is $620, not including taxes. At the time of publication, Zipair’s website showed only one lie-flat seat left to and from Tokyo, so if you are interested in flying business class to Tokyo, we recommend booking these tickets ASAP.


This $1,589 price is only for your seats — you will pay extra for other amenities. Zipair offers bundles that provide seat selection, an inflight meal, a carry-on and checked baggage. These bundles can cost up to an extra $115.


If you’re not interested in purchasing a bundle, Zipair gives you the option to choose amenities individually. For example, the airline’s outbound flight offers small perks like a tote bag or a box of cookies. Zipair also charges an extra $11.28 to enter the Narita TraveLounge, where you can receive a complimentary alcoholic drink and a dessert.


Even after choosing a business-class fare, Zipair charges extra to select seats. These seats cost $18 each. Inflight meals also cost $10.58 each, with five options, including a vegetarian meal.


The cost of checked baggage largely depends on the weight and is not included in the business-class fare. A bag that weighs 14 kilograms, or approximately 30 pounds, will cost an extra $38.78.


Maximize your purchase

Be sure to use cards that earn bonus points on airfare purchases, like The Platinum Card® from American Express (5 points per dollar on airfare booked directly with the airline or through American Express Travel, on up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year), Citi Prestige® Card (5 points per dollar on airfare), Citi Premier® Card (see rates and fees), Chase Sapphire Reserve (3 points per dollar on airfare), American Express® Gold Card (3 points per dollar on airfare when booked directly with the airline or through Amex Travel) or the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (2 points per dollar on travel). See this post for more on maximizing airfare purchases.

The information for the Citi Prestige Card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Bottom line

These fares to Tokyo are not only cheap but also uncommon, so they're definitely worth acting on — even if you’ve had an inkling of interest in visiting the country.

Economy fares to Tokyo can be at least $1,000 and business class typically starts at $4,000. Given these discounts, these flights to Tokyo are sure to fill up quickly.

However, do note that the business-class fares (Zipair Tokyo is the only airline offering a business-class discount) do not include amenities you may pay extra for. This will increase the price of your flight tickets.

Despite the extra costs, paying for amenities and perks such as seat selection and airport lounge service will still be cheaper than business-class fares from other airlines.

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