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November 2019

Feature Article

2020 Expansion of International Air Networks in Tokyo’s Haneda Airport

by Hiroki Sakamoto

While air passenger transport in the world has been steadily growing, Japan hopes to achieve even greater targets of 40 million foreign visitors in 2020 and 60 million in 2030, and is implementing policies in order to address these increasing aviation demands. One major policy is to enhance the functions of Tokyo metropolitan airports (Tokyo International Airport (Haneda Airport) and Narita International Airport (Narita Airport)).

Efforts are now underway for the two airports to jointly achieve take-offs/landings at the world’s top rates (approximately 1 million per year), roughly the same as those for New York or London. Specifically, efforts are being made to increase the airport capacity by such measures as reviewing the flight paths to and from Haneda Airport and developing a third runway in Narita Airport.

In August 2019, the United States and Japanese Government officials in charge of aviation negotiations reached an agreement to increase daytime services (6:00-22:55) between Haneda Airport and U.S. destinations. Among the 50 new international slot pairs created at the airport, they allocate 12 new slot pairs (12 arrivals and 12 departures daily) for U.S. air carriers, and 12 new slot pairs for Japanese air carriers. The new flight services are expected to be available from March 29th, 2020, at the beginning of the Summer 2020 season, and in time for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games.

A control tower at Haneda Airport

In September 2019, after considerations on how to expand the number of foreign visitors and strengthen Japan’s international competitiveness, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism of Japan announced the allocation of slots for 50 flights. For the first time, Russia, Australia, India, Italy, Turkey, Finland, Scandinavia (Denmark, Sweden or Norway) acquired daytime slots into the country.

The allocations of slots for the 50 flights are as follows by country:

USA: 24 flights

China: 8 flights

Russia: 4 flights

Australia: 4 flights

India: 2 flights

Italy: 2 flights

Turkey: 2 flights

Finland: 2 flights

Scandinavia (Denmark, Sweden or Norway): 2 flights

Among the 50 flights, 25 flights were allocated to Japanese air carriers (ANA: 13.5 flights, JAL: 11.5 flights in total).

USA: ANA 6 flights, JAL 6 flights

China: ANA 2 flights, JAL 2 flights

Russia: ANA 1 flight, JAL 1 flight

Australia: ANA 1 flight, JAL 1 flight

India: ANA 0.5 flights, JAL 0.5 flights

Italy: ANA 1 flight

Turkey: ANA 1 flight

Finland: JAL 1 flight

Scandinavia (Denmark, Sweden, or Norway) : ANA 1 flight

An aerial view of Haneda airport, which is close to downtown Tokyo

The details of slot allocations for each international region are as follows:

1) North America :

Currently, both the U.S. and Canada have daytime slots, but for this most recent change, only the slots for the U.S. were expanded.

Regarding U.S. air carriers, Delta Air Lines will have flights from Seattle, Detroit, Atlanta, Portland and Honolulu; United Airlines will have flights from Newark (N.J.), Chicago O’Hare, Washington-Dulles and Los Angeles; American Airlines will have flights from Dallas/Fort Worth and Los Angeles; and Hawaiian Airlines will have a flight from Honolulu. Delta Air Lines decided that it will fully transfer its U.S.-Tokyo flights from Narita Airport to Haneda Airport, bringing its operations closer to central Tokyo.

Regarding Japanese airline routes to the United States, ANA and JAL are each allocated 6 flights.

Currently, ANA operates from Narita Airport to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, San Jose, Chicago, Houston, Washington D.C., New York, and Honolulu, and from Haneda Airport to Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, and Honolulu. From March 29, 2020, ANA is planning to offer new non-stop services from Haneda Airport to Houston, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle and Washington D.C. Also, ANA will be increasing the frequency of the Haneda - Los Angeles route in 2020. In addition, all routes from Narita Airport to Houston, San Jose, Seattle and Washington D.C., and some routes to Los Angeles, will be relocated to Haneda Airport.

JAL operates from Narita Airport to Los Angeles, San Diego, Seattle, Chicago, New York, Dallas, Boston, Honolulu, Kona and Guam, and from Haneda Airport to San Francisco and New York. From March 29, 2020, JAL is planning to establish new services between Haneda Airport and Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles and Honolulu. Also, JAL will be increasing the frequency of the Haneda - New York route in 2020. Furthermore, all routes from Narita Airport to New York and Dallas, and some routes to Chicago and Honolulu, will be relocated to Haneda Airport.

2) Asia:

China has acquired eight new flights, making it the country with the second most slots after the United States. Currently, both Japanese and Chinese airlines fly to Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou during the daytime. India has newly been awarded daytime slots for the first time. There were no additional slots for South Korea.

3) Europe:

Currently, there are landing slots during the day time for the United Kingdom, France and Germany. However, no additional slots for these countries were awarded. Slots for Russia, Italy, Finland, Scandinavia (Denmark, Sweden or Norway) are newly being applied.

From March 2020, daytime services between U.S. cities and Haneda Airport will be drastically increased. That means that US citizens will easily able to travel to local areas in Japan such as Hokkaido, Shikoku, Kyushu and Okinawa by using the numerous and various domestic connecting flights at Haneda Airport. Why don’t you plan your next journey to Japan by utilizing the expanded and advanced aviation transport networks at Haneda Airport?

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