Today (January 17, 2020): Japan Airlines is giving away 50,000 free plane tickets!
It’s very rare these days that airlines hand out free tickets, but amazingly, that’s exactly what Japan Airlines (JAL) is doing! To encourage visitors to travel more widely within Japan, the airline is giving away 50,000 free round-trip air tickets – but there’s a catch.
- The flights need to be taken next summer, between July 1st and September 30th. The month of September might be the best time, because the weather in Japan will be a bit cooler and the visitor numbers will not be as high as in the summer peak.
- The free flights will depart from or return to Tokyo (Haneda) and Osaka (Itami / Kansai) only. That’s to encourage travelers to see less visited parts of Japan and to go outside of the typical Tokyo-Kyoto-Osaka tourist circuit, which will be especially overcrowded next summer as people flock to Tokyo for the Olympics.
- To be eligible for free tickets, travelers must be registered outside of Japan with the flag carrier’s Mileage Bank frequent flier program (joining that program is free of charge).
Applications for Japan Airlines’ giveaway will open in late February but the site is online already. So it’s best to set a reminder to check back in February. This is how it will work:
- First, you will have to select which airport you want to fly out of — either Haneda Airport in Tokyo, or Itami or Kansai Airports in Osaka.
- After selecting the preferred airport of departure, you will be shown four possible destinations within Japan.
- If you win – assuming you got your application in before they ran out of tickets – you’ll receive an email within three days notifying you of which of the four places you’ll be flying free to.
- Family and friends traveling together can apply as a group of up to four people.
- You need to have an international ticket to Japan booked for the period, and you’ll need to input the info for your arrival flight when you apply.
- Applications will be on a first-come, first-served basis.
In summary, for travelers with plans to be in Japan between July 1 and September 30, this could be well worth trying for. Chances are that you will be traveling to the country of the rising sun indeed as Japan expects a boost in tourist numbers because of the Olympics. The Games will be held from July 24 to August 9, 2020, and the subsequent Paralympics finish on September 6. Japan’s government expects the “Olympics effect” will bring approximately an extra 10 million visitors to the country in 2020.