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.

After months of anticipation, All Nippon Airways finally took delivery of its very first Airbus A380 in March, which will be used exclusively for flights between Tokyo and Honolulu. It was a bittersweet moment for the manufacturer — with no new orders on the books, as of now, it was the very last time Airbus delivered a superjumbo jet to a new customer.

And, in an unusual move, ANA didn’t welcome journalists onboard for a tour — in fact, the first time any member of the public has had a chance to share photographs of the interior appears to be this week, when my buddy Sam Chui got to explore the new double-decker jet in Japan.

Photo by Nicky Kelvin / The Points Guy.

Sam posted his photos on Twitter and Instagram, and generously agreed to share them with TPG readers as well.

The final aircraft matches the layout we’ve expected since last year, with four proper cabins, consisting of 8 seats in first class, 56 in business and 73 in premium economy, all on the upper deck, and 383 in economy below, including a special section called “ANA COUCHii” in the rear, with economy seats that transform into a three- or four-seat bed, similar to Air New Zealand’s Skycouch.

ANA completely redesigned its first-class cabin for the A380, with an entirely new product, complete with a sliding door and a 32-inch TV.

Like first class, business seats are arranged in a 1-2-1 configuration, so everyone gets direct access to the aisle. They’re staggered, though, so some seats offer more privacy than others.

Located behind business class, premium-economy seats offer 38 inches of pitch and 15.6-inch in-flight entertainment systems. And, since these seats are on the upper deck, passengers at the window have access to a special storage compartment — especially useful for flyers seated in the bulkhead row.

Arranged in a 3-4-3 configuration, economy seats offer 34 inches of pitch, along with seat-back entertainment, power outlets and USB charging ports.

Sam says the ANA COUCHii section is ideal for families — there’s even a special family powder room just behind.

Paid first-class fares are astronomically high, starting at a whopping $13,500 round-trip. Award tickets are a far better deal, but availability is incredibly limited — I only found seats to book near the end of the schedule, in February and March 2020, so you’ll need to plan far in advance. Business-class awards don’t appear to be available at all, though those fares are more reasonable, starting at $3,200 round-trip.

Hopefully more award space will open up over the weeks and months to come — we dig into all of your redemption options right here, including the following programs and round-trip rates:

Cabin ANA MileageClub
Avianca LifeMiles United MileagePlus
Aeroplan Singapore KrisFlyer Virgin Atlantic Flying Club
Economy 35,000 – 43,000 miles 55,000 miles 55,000 miles 80,000 miles 108,000 miles 45,000 miles
Premium Economy 53,000 – 61,000 miles N/A N/A 130,000 miles N/A N/A
Business  60,000 – 68,000 miles 96,000 miles 110,000 miles 160,000 miles 210,000 miles 70,000 miles
First 120,000 – 129,000 miles 132,000 miles 170,000 miles 200,000 miles 250,000 miles 90,000 miles

 

If you do manage to find availability, it may be possible to route through Honolulu from the mainland US to Asia, giving you an opportunity to experience the A380 for the same number of miles as a nonstop flight to Japan:

We’ll be back with many more photos after ANA’s A380 launch at the end of May, but head on over to Sam’s site for a closer look right now.

Featured photo courtesy of Sam Chui.

Know before you go.

News and deals straight to your inbox every day.

2018 TPG Award Winner: Mid-Tier Card of the Year
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

NEW INCREASED OFFER: 60,000 Points

TPG'S BONUS VALUATION: $1,200

CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred named "Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption" - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, June 2018
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
  • No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
18.24% - 25.24% Variable
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

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.